Is the Glass Half Full, or Half Empty?

So, to have an excuse to post this anywhere besides Community Lounge I made some art for this example

I have finally created an answer to the question of “Is the Glass ‘Half Full’ or ‘Half Empty’?”

Here I have an empty cup. You would call it empty.
pixil-frame-0 (5)

Now if I added 50% liquid to it, most people would now call it Half Full


However, if I have a Full Cup, and remove 50% of the liquid, most people would say it is half empty

pixil-gif-drawing (1)

So now we have a problem.

  • If it was drained to 50%, it’s half empty
  • If it’s filled to 50%, it’s half full.

So if there is a cup on the table, and you know nothing of how its state came to be 50% liquid, which do you say?
To solve this, the natural state of a cup is empty, so adding any amount of liquid is an addition. In this case, you must think of it as filling the cup to 50% because you do not know the prior events to bring it to that amount, all you know is that 50% is inside a cup.

However, if it was a Water Bottle, its natural state is full of liquid. Meaning if that was at 50%, I would call it half empty because its initial state is full of liquid.

One can go as far as saying if someone drained a cup with 100% water to 50%, it would still be half full because it’s still an addition to the initial state of an empty cup. I say it’s half-empty in that case because the point in time we are talking about is the period between a 100% cup and 50% cup, the initial state of the cup isn’t being referenced.


Like I stated before. We know not if it was ever entirely full. It could have accumulated water or have been filled only about halfway.

What we do know is that the cup at one point in its lifetime that it was empty. Cups aren’t premade full of liquid.

So it’s safe to assume it’s half full. Considering the water had been put in there to begin with.

Now if I found a cup half filled laying around. I would accuse my brother. But that’s not the case here.


it’s basically impossible to have the cup be exactly 50% filled, so it’s neither

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Actually, The PixelArt cup is perfectly halfway. And it is technically possible to have it perfectly 50% filled cup irl.


Found this now I gotta share it. Which one are you?


Optimist because my point can only be argued against by a physicist


my outlook on life is that the glass is 1/2 full of diy ice, ALL WATER ON EARTH MUST BE FROZEN, THE WORLD WILL BECOME A WINTER WONDERLAND ETERNALLY!

I don’t think the world will ever freeze over, mostly since we keep contributing to greenhouse gasses that trap heat into the atmosphere. So we are more likely to burn up before Earth strays too far form the sun and becomes the next mars. In theory.


Unsure of the state in which caused the liquid to reach it’s current capacity in the container, I personally would say half full.


Hmm, let’s add another perspective, I’ll take the grammar approach to the argument.

Full and empty are defined terms of a state of a container, in other words it’s also a tool for measurement. Empty is a state in which no objects are in the container, while full is the max number of the object type that can fit inside the container. Terms like Half Full or Half empty is mixing together measurement terms that work but isn’t the correct result of the product. The correct use of measurement would be closer to a Half a Cup to represent a drinking container.

For example, you would say “I have a half a cup of soda”, not “my cup is half full of soda”. Or for example, “I have a half a tank of gas”, instead of “my gas tank is half empty”.


What if the volume of both the liquid and glass are constantly changing, while remaining the same ratio to half filled.

Therefore you wouldn’t know what unit of measure to base it on,


My answer is half a cup, no matter the container or object used to fill it.
I have a half a large sonic cup of tea with me right now.
I don’t know the measurements of a large sonic cup, or the amount of ice that is in it.


Ok, I finally have my answer, after all these months.

A cup that is 50% drained is still half full of water, although half of it was just emptied.
A cup that is 50% drained is also half empty, even though half of it was just poured out.

In the case of this cup:
The correct answer is both Half Full and Half empty.
Both mean the same thing, in this case. If it is half drained, then it still has half of the contents.

I am quite sure that this is the correct answer.

@CodeAlpaca, are you ever going to announce the correct answer? Or was this topic…dead… oops.


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There wasn’t really meant to be a correct answer, just seeing what people thought.
Technically I guess you could say the topic is dead, but I don’t mind having my old topics revived


There’s no correct answer and there never will be