Question-specific discussion

Old college threads.
User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:15 am

This is the thread for discussion of specific questions!
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
1992 in spaceflight
Auron
Posts: 1250
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:11 pm
Location: St. Louis-area, MO

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Sun Sep 30, 2012 12:34 pm

The bonus in round 3 on heat capacity really should be better worded to state what it's asking for. The second line of that bonus part caused Tulsa to answer Specific Heat instead, which was denied in a protest.

Also, the Oedipus Complex is also Oedipal, as I found out yesterday (I gave the team answering the points, but I know very little about psychology. Was I right to do this?).
Jacob O'Rourke
Washington (MO) HS Assistant Coach (2014-Present); MOQBA Secretary (2015-Present); HSAPQ Host Contact; NASAT Outreach Coordinator (2016 and 2017)
Formerly: Kirksville HS Assistant Coach (2012-2014); Truman State '14; and Pacific High (MO) '10


"And here we are as on a darkling plain, Swept by confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night."
Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach.

User avatar
Mewto55555
Tidus
Posts: 708
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 9:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Mewto55555 » Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:13 pm

What was the first line of the Fibonacci number tossup talking about? I thought I heard one too many variables, but maybe I just couldn't parse something right on the fly.
Max
formerly of Ladue, Chicago

Ringil
Rikku
Posts: 412
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Ringil » Sun Sep 30, 2012 5:04 pm

Mewto55555 wrote:What was the first line of the Fibonacci number tossup talking about? I thought I heard one too many variables, but maybe I just couldn't parse something right on the fly.
Here's the tossup:

Code: Select all

4. The fact that the n-th element of this is divisible by the square of the i-th element of this if and only if k is divisible by the i-th element of this gave a solution to the Julia Robinson Hypothesis. The divisibility properties of this allowed the proof that recursively enumerable sets are equivalent to Diophantine sets by Yuri Matiyasevich and thus solve Hilbert’s tenth problem. When modular arithmetic is applied to it, (*) Pisano periods can be observed. Its closed-form solution is known as Binet’s formula, and it was introduced in the West in the book Liber Abaci. The numbers comprising this sequence, which is a type of Lucas sequence, are the sums of successive “shallow” diagonals of Pascal’s Triangle. Originally devised to study the growth of an hypothetical rabbit population, for 10 points, name this sequence, beginning 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, in which each term is the sum of the two before it.
ANSWER: Fibonacci sequence
<RC>
http://www.fq.math.ca/Scanned/15-1/hoggatt2.pdf

You're correct, I messed up when I was typing this and converting it from equations into words. I'm sorry if this caused anyone to neg or be confused :(
Libo
Washington '14, Michigan '13, Troy High School '09

User avatar
The Bold Ideas of Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
Tidus
Posts: 708
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:43 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by The Bold Ideas of Bernie Sanders (I-VT) » Sun Sep 30, 2012 5:08 pm

From what I've gathered, there were a lot of negs on the Mexico TU on the clue for that Buñuel dinner party movie. Was it placed to reward those who knew it was filmed in Mexico or just an arbitrary clue placement?
Adam Sperber
Hickman '10, Northwestern B '14

" 'Yay, more Adam Sperber' --Nobody " --Cody Voight

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Sun Sep 30, 2012 5:26 pm

merv1618 wrote:From what I've gathered, there were a lot of negs on the Mexico TU on the clue for that Buñuel dinner party movie. Was it placed to reward those who knew it was filmed in Mexico or just an arbitrary clue placement?
That particular clue was included because that film was made in Mexico and is very associated with Mexican cinema, as opposed to other Buñuel films whose nationality is more ambiguous. It's unfortunate that people negged, but the clue did specifically say "One film made in this country."
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:45 pm

I feel like these types of threads don't often have praise for questions, but I want to commend Michigan for the bonus on snarks. Combinatorics is probably somewhat underrepresented in quizbowl, and it'd be fantastic if this were the impetus for people to write more graph theory questions, even if they end up being mostly bonuses. But in terms of question-writing, it was also excellent -- it dealt with a genuinely important topic in the field in such a way that people who had no idea what a snark is can still get points.

On to the stuff I didn't like as much: There was a bonus part on some philosopher (I don't remember who) that started, like, "His epistemological thinking dealt with the questions 'What do we know?' and 'What qualities characterize knowledge?'", which is about the least useful clue ever, since that's basically the definition of epistemology. I assume this was supposed to convey some real information (maybe those are chapter titles from a book or something?), but either I heard it wrong or it should be rewritten.

There was also a tossup about Detroit (it mentions a race riot if I need to disambiguate) that Jake and Dargan thought had a clue that was neg-bait; can you post that question?

To end on a lighter note: There was a bonus part that mentioned someone recording, I think, "Let's Do It" with Bing Crosby, but when read aloud, it sounds like "Let's Do It With Bing Crosby." I personally think it's hilarious enough that you should leave it as is, but you might want to reword it.
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

Ringil
Rikku
Posts: 412
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Ringil » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:53 pm

Fond du lac operon wrote: There was also a tossup about Detroit (it mentions a race riot if I need to disambiguate) that Jake and Dargan thought had a clue that was neg-bait; can you post that question?
Here's the tossup on Detroit:

Code: Select all

18. This city’s Advertiser and Tribune newspaper blamed its rival, led by William Quinby, for inciting its 1863 race riot by printing stories charged against African-Americans. The book Arc of Justice discusses a black man who was tried for defending his own home from a racially charged mob in this city, but that man, Ossian Sweet, was successfully defended in court by Clarence Darrow. William Cunningham founded the Focus: HOPE movement in this city in response to civil unrest that included the (*) Algiers Motel Incident. That civil unrest caused governor George Romney to call on Lyndon Johnson to send in the National Guard, and it was centered on this city’s 12th Street. It had earlier seen an economic boom with the expansion of General Motors and Ford. For 10 points, name this city home to the corrupt mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, the most populous in Michigan.
ANSWER: Detroit
<KD>
Libo
Washington '14, Michigan '13, Troy High School '09

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:29 pm

Ringil wrote:

Code: Select all

18. This city’s Advertiser and Tribune newspaper blamed its rival, led by William Quinby, for inciting its 1863 race riot by printing stories charged against African-Americans. The book Arc of Justice discusses a black man who was tried for defending his own home from a racially charged mob in this city, but that man, Ossian Sweet, was successfully defended in court by Clarence Darrow. William Cunningham founded the Focus: HOPE movement in this city in response to civil unrest that included the (*) Algiers Motel Incident. That civil unrest caused governor George Romney to call on Lyndon Johnson to send in the National Guard, and it was centered on this city’s 12th Street. It had earlier seen an economic boom with the expansion of General Motors and Ford. For 10 points, name this city home to the corrupt mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, the most populous in Michigan.
ANSWER: Detroit
<KD>
Right, so the issue as far as I understand is that there's a section of New Orleans called Algiers, and since a lot of American cities had race riots in the 1860s, incl. Nawlins, and have had other incidents of racial unrest at various times from the 17th century to, oh, today, Dargan negged with New Orleans as soon as he heard "Algiers" (and Jake might have been buzzing too). But looking at the question as written, I don't really see much to complain about, and Jake agrees. So I guess consider the objection withdrawn?
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:44 pm

Fond du lac operon wrote:There was a bonus part on some philosopher (I don't remember who) that started, like, "His epistemological thinking dealt with the questions 'What do we know?' and 'What qualities characterize knowledge?'", which is about the least useful clue ever, since that's basically the definition of epistemology. I assume this was supposed to convey some real information (maybe those are chapter titles from a book or something?), but either I heard it wrong or it should be rewritten.
QUARK wrote:This thinker’s epistemological views led him to ask “What do we know” and “What are the criteria of knowledge,” of which he believed it was hard to answer either one without first having solved the other. For 10 points each:
[10] Name this author of Theory of Knowledge and Person and Object whose namesake paradox is about the swapping of all the properties of Adam and Noah in some possible world.
ANSWER: Roderick Chisholm
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:31 am

So looking at the Chisholm entry on the SEP, it seems like that clue came from this section? I'm a big fan of the SEP, but obviously not every sentence from it makes a good clue, just like, say, "Sharp contrasts and elements of the grotesque characterize much of his music" would be a bad clue for Shostakovich. And I think that's just such a bad clue -- if you want to talk about Chisholm's epistemology, you might as well dive into the technical summary of Theory of Knowledge in the preceding section and do your best to compress it to like a sentence and a half -- it's harder work, but you'll learn more, and you'll probably produce a clue that's closer to uniquely identifying than "This epistemologist asked what the criteria for knowledge are, and something else vague."
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

User avatar
The Ununtiable Twine
Yuna
Posts: 989
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 11:09 pm
Location: Lafayette, LA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:42 pm

Can you post the ECSC tossup? I'm curious as to whether a prompt could have been granted in the middle of the question or not.
Jake Sundberg
Louisiana '04-'10, '14-'16
Alabama '10-'14
Associate Director, Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Mon Oct 01, 2012 1:13 pm

QUARK wrote:Key principles of this organization were stated in a declaration that espoused the creation of “de facto solidarity” to make war between two countries “not merely unthinkable, but materially impossible.” The first leader of this organization also created the Pleven Plan, which Clement Attlee opposed along with this organization. That first leader was Jean Monnet, who helped write the (*) Schuman Declaration. One founder of this organization saw it as allowing them to remove “fetters” imposed in areas such as Saar and the Ruhr. This supranational organization was created by the Treaty of Paris and its creation was followed 6 years later by the Treaty of Rome, which created the European Economic Community. For 10 points, name this organization that aimed to create a common market for its namesake commodities.
ANSWER: European Coal and Steel Community [accept ECSC]
<Libo>
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
The Ununtiable Twine
Yuna
Posts: 989
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 11:09 pm
Location: Lafayette, LA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:58 pm

It seems there should have at least been a prompt on EU there, but maybe I'm mistaken.
Jake Sundberg
Louisiana '04-'10, '14-'16
Alabama '10-'14
Associate Director, Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:24 pm

The Ununtiable Twine wrote:It seems there should have at least been a prompt on EU there, but maybe I'm mistaken.
I don't think that's right. Those things really all refer to the ECSC and not the EU.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

Ringil
Rikku
Posts: 412
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Ringil » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:32 pm

grapesmoker wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:It seems there should have at least been a prompt on EU there, but maybe I'm mistaken.
I don't think that's right. Those things really all refer to the ECSC and not the EU.
I agree with this. I'm not sure which part would apply for EU besides that it's like some European organization?? I mean Jean Monnet wasn't the first leader of the EU and the first quote is from the Schumann Declaration.
Libo
Washington '14, Michigan '13, Troy High School '09

User avatar
The Ununtiable Twine
Yuna
Posts: 989
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 11:09 pm
Location: Lafayette, LA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:50 pm

Ringil wrote:
grapesmoker wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:It seems there should have at least been a prompt on EU there, but maybe I'm mistaken.
I don't think that's right. Those things really all refer to the ECSC and not the EU.
I agree with this. I'm not sure which part would apply for EU besides that it's like some European organization?? I mean Jean Monnet wasn't the first leader of the EU and the first quote is from the Schumann Declaration.
OK, cool.
Jake Sundberg
Louisiana '04-'10, '14-'16
Alabama '10-'14
Associate Director, Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:25 pm

It's entirely possible that I'm remembering a round that we read in practice, or making it up altogether, but was there a round in which there was a tossup on cytokines and a bonus that dealt with cytokinesis? And one of the clues for the cytokine tossup had to do with cytokinesis? If so, that should probably be fixed.
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:47 pm

Fond du lac operon wrote:So looking at the Chisholm entry on the SEP, it seems like that clue came from this section? I'm a big fan of the SEP, but obviously not every sentence from it makes a good clue, just like, say, "Sharp contrasts and elements of the grotesque characterize much of his music" would be a bad clue for Shostakovich. And I think that's just such a bad clue -- if you want to talk about Chisholm's epistemology, you might as well dive into the technical summary of Theory of Knowledge in the preceding section and do your best to compress it to like a sentence and a half -- it's harder work, but you'll learn more, and you'll probably produce a clue that's closer to uniquely identifying than "This epistemologist asked what the criteria for knowledge are, and something else vague."
I do think this is actually a useful clue - probably not the most useful clue, but it's saying that he thought that neither question was prior to the other, which is a contentful clue, and far from just a description of what epistemology is.
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
Auroni
Auron
Posts: 2955
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:23 pm
Location: Brooklyn

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Auroni » Mon Oct 01, 2012 8:59 pm

I think the "halogenation" question should accept "free radical reaction" before free radicals are mentioned, or at least move the mention of "free radicals" to the beginning of that sentence, because radical reactions are as much of a thing as halogenation reactions are.
Auroni Gupta
UIUC

User avatar
Unicolored Jay
Forums Staff: Administrator
Posts: 770
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:28 pm
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Unicolored Jay » Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:36 pm

Tokyo Sex Whale wrote:I think the "halogenation" question should accept "free radical reaction" before free radicals are mentioned, or at least move the mention of "free radicals" to the beginning of that sentence, because radical reactions are as much of a thing as halogenation reactions are.
I'd like to see this tossup, too.
Jasper Lee
University of Tennessee
The Ohio State University '14
Solon High School '10

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:07 pm

QUARK wrote:This type of reaction can be used to test for the presence of a methyl ketone, with a positive result giving a pale yellow substance. The Wohl-Ziegler reaction is an example of the radical allylic type of this reaction. When this type of reaction is performed on alkanes, it is typically initiated by UV radiation or heat and proceeds via a free-radical chain mechanism. One example of this type of reaction has a variation named for Simonini; that reaction operates on silver salts of carboxylic acids and is named for (*) Hunsdiecker. This type of reaction is particularly easy to perform when the element being added is the most electronegative element on the periodic table. For 10 points, name this process of reacting a compound with an element like fluorine or chlorine.
ANSWER: halogenation [accept haloform reaction or iodoform reaction before “Wohl-Ziegler,” and prompt after]
<WN>
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
Gautam
Auron
Posts: 1412
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:28 pm
Location: Zone of Avoidance
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Gautam » Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:09 pm

Fond du lac operon wrote:It's entirely possible that I'm remembering a round that we read in practice, or making it up altogether, but was there a round in which there was a tossup on cytokines and a bonus that dealt with cytokinesis? And one of the clues for the cytokine tossup had to do with cytokinesis? If so, that should probably be fixed.
You probably mean "cytokinins" rather than "cytokines" (which are completely different things.) They did happen somewhat close together although I'm not sure that it was a big issue, really. If there was overlap, then yeah, it should be removed.
Gautam - ACF
Currently tending to the 'quizbowl hobo' persuasion.

touchpack
Rikku
Posts: 279
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:25 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by touchpack » Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:55 pm

Alliance in the Alps wrote:
Tokyo Sex Whale wrote:I think the "halogenation" question should accept "free radical reaction" before free radicals are mentioned, or at least move the mention of "free radicals" to the beginning of that sentence, because radical reactions are as much of a thing as halogenation reactions are.
I'd like to see this tossup, too.
I'd like to make 2 comments on this one:

1) The question should rule out "decarboxylation," since I negged on the description of the Hunsdiecker with that
2) The tossup doesn't mention halogenation of alkenes, which is by FAR the most important form of halogenation (which is taught even in basic to intermediate level orgo)--it just asks about a bunch of random named things that I only know about through quizbowl and Wikipedia.
Billy Busse
Illinois '14
Member, ACF
Writer/Subject Editor/Set Editor, NAQT

User avatar
Auroni
Auron
Posts: 2955
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:23 pm
Location: Brooklyn

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Auroni » Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:57 pm

Well, you use the iodoform test in ochem lab and you learn about free radical halogenation when learning about alkanes, so I think the clue content is largely fine. The only problem with the question is that it didn't do a great job of ruling out alternate reaction types that could be the answer.
Auroni Gupta
UIUC

User avatar
Muriel Axon
Tidus
Posts: 689
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:19 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Muriel Axon » Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:00 pm

The "royal domain" bonus part had an acceptable alternate answer that was mentioned in the question.

Could you please post the "electrode" question? I think that one is a good example of the "What does this question actually want?" thing that kept recurring.

I'm sure I made this amply clear at the Michigan site, but I loved the Yanomamo question, and it seems like an excellent example of rewarding things that anthropologists actually learn about in class, as opposed to yet another question on Argonauts of the Western Pacific or some other thing nobody reads anymore. (I feel like the social science was pretty good overall.) Speaking of things nobody reads any more, Mythologies was an ill-conceived answer line.
Shan Kothari

Plymouth High School '10
Michigan State University '14
University of Minnesota '20

User avatar
women, fire and dangerous things
Tidus
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:34 pm
Location: Örkko, Cimmeria

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:42 pm

QUARK wrote:Frumkin’s correction only considers the potential from the compact layer and not the diffuse layer around these devices. The Chang-Jaffe boundary conditions are applied to the Stern plane of these devices to get the Gouy-Chapman limit, where the double layer around these devices will act like an ideal diode. Although not related to plasmas, the double layer acts like a Debye screen for these devices whose potential, along with the equilibrium potential, is related to current in the (*) Butler-Volmer equation. These devices are electrical conductors that come in contact with non-metallic portions of a circuit such as an ionic solution or electrolyte. For 10 points, name these devices in an electrochemical cell, including anodes and cathodes.
ANSWER: electrodes [anti-prompt on anode or cathode]
<Libo>
Will Nediger
-Proud member of the cult of Urcuchillay-
University of Western Ontario 2011, University of Michigan 2017
Emeritus member, ACF
Writer, NAQT

User avatar
Muriel Axon
Tidus
Posts: 689
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:19 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Muriel Axon » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:07 am

women, fire and dangerous things wrote:
QUARK wrote:Frumkin’s correction only considers the potential from the compact layer and not the diffuse layer around these devices. The Chang-Jaffe boundary conditions are applied to the Stern plane of these devices to get the Gouy-Chapman limit, where the double layer around these devices will act like an ideal diode. Although not related to plasmas, the double layer acts like a Debye screen for these devices whose potential, along with the equilibrium potential, is related to current in the (*) Butler-Volmer equation. These devices are electrical conductors that come in contact with non-metallic portions of a circuit such as an ionic solution or electrolyte. For 10 points, name these devices in an electrochemical cell, including anodes and cathodes.
ANSWER: electrodes [anti-prompt on anode or cathode]
<Libo>
Thanks. I recall that in my room, Jerry negged this with "terminal," and none of us on MSU could pick it up because that was also what we were thinking. I'm not familiar with the early clues, so is there any reason why terminal should not be accepted?
Shan Kothari

Plymouth High School '10
Michigan State University '14
University of Minnesota '20

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Tue Oct 02, 2012 2:17 am

Gautam wrote:
Fond du lac operon wrote:It's entirely possible that I'm remembering a round that we read in practice, or making it up altogether, but was there a round in which there was a tossup on cytokines and a bonus that dealt with cytokinesis? And one of the clues for the cytokine tossup had to do with cytokinesis? If so, that should probably be fixed.
You probably mean "cytokinins" rather than "cytokines" (which are completely different things.) They did happen somewhat close together although I'm not sure that it was a big issue, really. If there was overlap, then yeah, it should be removed.
Yep, I meant cytokinins. I don't know from biology. Do any of the set writers know what we're talking about, and if so can they post the questions?
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

Ringil
Rikku
Posts: 412
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Ringil » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:25 am

Fond du lac operon wrote: Yep, I meant cytokinins. I don't know from biology. Do any of the set writers know what we're talking about, and if so can they post the questions?
QUARK Round 7 wrote:1. In 1997, M. A. Holland proposed, by Occam’s Razor, a hypothesis that these hormones were produced only by microbial symbionts such as the endophytic Methylobacterium. The most common naturally-found version of these hormones can either be produced as a recycled product of the tRNA pathway or through a pathway involving AMP. Activating the tmr gene to produce enzymes that degrade this hormone results in (*) crown galls that are root-like. These hormones were first obtained from herring sperm DNA and their effects were first discovered using coconut milk. In the cambium, expression of the receptor genes for these hormones peaks in the cells that are actively dividing. Corn kernels were where one of these called zeatin was discovered. Auxins act in conjunction with, for 10 points, what hormones named after the cell cycle step following mitosis?
ANSWER: cytokinins
<BF>
QUARK Round 7 wrote:6. This process typically occurs along with cytokinesis. For 10 points each:
[10] Name this process of cell division, divided into prophase, prometaphase, metaphase, anaphase, and telophase.
ANSWER: mitosis
[10] In highly vacuolated plant cells, one of these sheets of cytoplasm is formed before mitosis, allowing the nucleus to move to the center of the cell.
ANSWER: phragmosome
[10] The mitotic phase alternates with interphase, which is itself divided into three phases: the S-phase, and two phases named after this letter, which are also called the pre-mitotic and post-mitotic phases.
ANSWER: G
<WN>
They seem to have a bit of overlap, so I have moved them apart.
The Eighth Viscount of Waaaah wrote: Thanks. I recall that in my room, Jerry negged this with "terminal," and none of us on MSU could pick it up because that was also what we were thinking. I'm not familiar with the early clues, so is there any reason why terminal should not be accepted?
Well... I think the main reason terminal is not acceptable is because that is never the term used to talk about said things when looking up stuff about this. More specifically, terminals are just like funny metal things that are part of the casing to make it easier to plug stuff to the electrodes (which are internal). Electrodes are the essential thing here. For example here: http://books.google.com/books?id=BMVR37 ... de&f=false

I felt like the giveaway was reasonable, but empirically, it seems to have resulted in many problems. :( Suggestions would be appreciated.
Libo
Washington '14, Michigan '13, Troy High School '09

User avatar
Unicolored Jay
Forums Staff: Administrator
Posts: 770
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:28 pm
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Unicolored Jay » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:05 pm

Tokyo Sex Whale wrote:Well, you use the iodoform test in ochem lab and you learn about free radical halogenation when learning about alkanes, so I think the clue content is largely fine. The only problem with the question is that it didn't do a great job of ruling out alternate reaction types that could be the answer.
Yeah, I agree with this. The free radical halogenation reaction was the very first reaction I was taught in my first ochem class. I would have buzzed on that clue if I had not blanked on the name.
Jasper Lee
University of Tennessee
The Ohio State University '14
Solon High School '10

User avatar
Auroni
Auron
Posts: 2955
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:23 pm
Location: Brooklyn

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Auroni » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:54 pm

Ringil wrote: I felt like the giveaway was reasonable, but empirically, it seems to have resulted in many problems. :( Suggestions would be appreciated.
That is straight up the easiest possible definition of electrodes, it's absolutely fine.
Auroni Gupta
UIUC

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:22 am

women, fire and dangerous things wrote:
QUARK wrote:Frumkin’s correction only considers the potential from the compact layer and not the diffuse layer around these devices. The Chang-Jaffe boundary conditions are applied to the Stern plane of these devices to get the Gouy-Chapman limit, where the double layer around these devices will act like an ideal diode. Although not related to plasmas, the double layer acts like a Debye screen for these devices whose potential, along with the equilibrium potential, is related to current in the (*) Butler-Volmer equation. These devices are electrical conductors that come in contact with non-metallic portions of a circuit such as an ionic solution or electrolyte. For 10 points, name these devices in an electrochemical cell, including anodes and cathodes.
ANSWER: electrodes [anti-prompt on anode or cathode]
<Libo>
I have literally zero idea of what most of this means; the first words in this question which carry any useful information at all are "Debye screen." I am happy to accept that given the word "anode" which is where I buzzed, I ought to have said "electrode" rather than "terminal" (which is the external part of the electrode), but I personally have absolutely no way to make use of anything that comes before "electrical conductors" to even figure out what world we're in. Maybe getting through 10 years of a physics education without encountering half of this word salad is some kind of deficiency on my part, but I suspect not.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

Ringil
Rikku
Posts: 412
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Ringil » Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:08 am

grapesmoker wrote:
women, fire and dangerous things wrote:
QUARK wrote:Frumkin’s correction only considers the potential from the compact layer and not the diffuse layer around these devices. The Chang-Jaffe boundary conditions are applied to the Stern plane of these devices to get the Gouy-Chapman limit, where the double layer around these devices will act like an ideal diode. Although not related to plasmas, the double layer acts like a Debye screen for these devices whose potential, along with the equilibrium potential, is related to current in the (*) Butler-Volmer equation. These devices are electrical conductors that come in contact with non-metallic portions of a circuit such as an ionic solution or electrolyte. For 10 points, name these devices in an electrochemical cell, including anodes and cathodes.
ANSWER: electrodes [anti-prompt on anode or cathode]
<Libo>
I have literally zero idea of what most of this means; the first words in this question which carry any useful information at all are "Debye screen." I am happy to accept that given the word "anode" which is where I buzzed, I ought to have said "electrode" rather than "terminal" (which is the external part of the electrode), but I personally have absolutely no way to make use of anything that comes before "electrical conductors" to even figure out what world we're in. Maybe getting through 10 years of a physics education without encountering half of this word salad is some kind of deficiency on my part, but I suspect not.
I wrote that tossup mainly based off of: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/chemical-eng ... ring-2011/
It was intended to be a chemistry question. In my physics education, we also pretty much ignored electrochemistry and other things like that, so I don't think it's strange that you might also not have learned about them. However, I think that electrodes are systems that are talked about a decent amount by chemists and engineers: http://www.chem.uidaho.edu/faculty/ifch ... em_558.htm, http://www.che.sc.edu/faculty/popov/drb ... netics.pdf, http://www.engr.uconn.edu/~jmfent/, etc.
Libo
Washington '14, Michigan '13, Troy High School '09

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 10:45 am

So I've had some time to look at the packets now, and can offer some specific feedback.
packet 1 wrote:This artist’s painting of St. James Led to His Execution has an extremely low viewpoint, and was destroyed in 1944. In his depiction of Judith, the only part of Holofernes’ body that can be seen other than his head is his foot. He was also known as an engraver, creating such works as a depiction of a bacchanal and the Battle of the Sea Gods. His frescoes in the Camera degli (*) Sposi were originally created for a Ducal Palace, like a series of nine paintings now housed at Hampton Court which depict people parading slaves, vases, and other spoils from Caesar’s victory in Gaul. He painted three versions of the martyrdom of a certain saint, which are located in Vienna, Venice, and the Louvre. His most famous painting shows two people on the left weeping over an extremely foreshortened body lying on a marble slab. For 10 points, name this Mantuan painter of St. Sebastian and The Dead Christ.
ANSWER: Andrea Mantegna
St. James Led to His Execution is a really famous Mantegna (even though it was destroyed), so this is a really misplaced clue. I had to wait until "Camera degli Sposi" to buzz to make sure I wasn't being fooled.
packet 1 wrote:This character paints over images supporting “such laudable ideals as Courage, Might, Justice, Truth, Liberty, Love, Honor, and Patriotism.” In his last appearance, this character abandons his friend’s quest to find the twelve-year-old sister of a prostitute in order to find some illegal tobacco. This man defends himself at a hearing, saying, “If we pay the government everything we owe it, we’ll only … discourage other individuals from (*) bombing their own men and planes.” That comes after he orders a strafing run on his own camp. This man gives a note bearing the words “A Share” to a man who demands his share of the syndicate run by this man. The first known activity of that syndicate is buying eggs for seven cents and selling them to the kitchen for five cents. For 10 points, name this profiteering mess hall officer in Catch-22 who runs a namesake M & M Enterprise.
ANSWER: Milo Minderbinder [accept either name]
This question kind of sucks. I've read Catch-22 several times, and I don't think any of those clues are from any really memorable scenes. Also, if I recall the second clue correctly, it refers to the end of Catch-22 but that would make it incorrect to refer to it as Milo's "last" appearance, as he also appears in Closing Time. But that's really neither here nor there; my main complaint here is that it's very hard to buzz on anything before "bombing their own planes," after which it's trivially easy to buzz, because that's a major incident in the book.
packet 1 wrote:In a medieval romance, this figure is the recipient of a gift of Christmas cherries. In some texts, this figure is the grandfather of Eliwlod, who is the son of Madoc. In Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parzival, he is the son of Brickus. Welsh texts describe him as the brother of Emrys and Custennin, but in a more famous appearance, his brother Constans is murdered and he is forced into exile with his other brother (*) Aurelius, until he returns to take vengeance on Vortigern. With Merlin’s help, this man, who is best known from Geoffrey of Monmouth’s History of the Kings of Britain, disguises himself as his enemy Gorlois in order to sleep with the latter’s wife Igraine, siring his most famous son. For 10 points, name this father of King Arthur.
ANSWER: Uther Pendragon
This whole question is a huge "Uther or Arthur?" gamble.
packet 1 wrote:This philosopher’s final book divides the first title concept into “open” and “closed” forms, which correspond to “dynamic” and “static” forms of the second title concept. He argued that memory is not localized in a specific part of the brain in a work written as a response to Théodule Ribot. He illustrated a major concept with the image of two (*) spools with a tape running between them. This author of three essays on laughter also wrote The Two Sources of Morality and Religion and Matter and Memory. His major work introduced a subjective experience of time called “duration,” which was further developed in a book that proposed that evolution is guided by élan vital, Creative Evolution. For 10 points, name this Nobel-winning French philosopher who wrote Time and Free Will.
ANSWER: Henri Bergson
I think the second sentence here isn't very informative unless you know exactly who Theodule Ribot is. I think maybe this question could have benefited more from using that space to talk about central concepts from Time and Free Will.
packet 1 wrote:One of these geographic features contains an endpoint near a town whose name literally translates as “burning water,” Ai-Ais, and is most often viewed from Hobas. Another of these geographical features contains the archaeological site of Buffalo Eddy and is home to a town named Pittsburg Landing. A different example of this feature is traversed by the Chihuahua al Pacifico railroad and is home to the Tarahumara people, who were driven there from the more fertile land around it by the Spanish. One of the largest ones in the world is found in Namibia and named after the (*) Fish River. Kaibab National Forest is located near the most notable one in the U. S., which can be seen from the Lipan and Guano Points. For 10 points, name these features that include the Copper one in Mexico, the Hells one, carved by the Snake River, and the Grand one, carved by the Colorado River.
ANSWER: canyons [accept synonyms such as gorges; accept more specific answers]
I'm a geographic imbecile, so maybe I'm wrong here, but I feel like this basically has no gradation whatsoever. Most of the early clues seem downright unhelpful and I'm not sure "Tarahumara" is going to get anyone to say "canyons" any more than, say, "Buffalo Eddy" is.
packet 1 wrote:Whether a task is completed or uncompleted affects this phenomenon, according to an effect named for a student of Kurt Lewin, Bluma Zeigarnik. One model of this phenomenon was originally a two-stage model, but later incorporated the “sensory” type of this phenomenon; that model was developed by Atkinson and Shiffrin. The experimental study of this phenomenon was pioneered by Hermann (*) Ebbinghaus, who studied it using nonsense syllables and came up with an exponential curve representing its decline. The misinformation effect retroactively interferes with this phenomenon, and has been extensively studied by Elizabeth Loftus. One form of it is aided by chunking, and a paper by George Miller cites “seven plus or minus two” as the “magic number” for its “working” variety. For 10 points, name this phenomenon which comes in long-term and short-term varieties.
ANSWER: memory
This question has basically the same problem as the Minderbinder tossup; the early clue is interesting and something I didn't know, the second clue isn't much easier, and then it goes downhill to "Ebbinghaus" very quickly. I think you should at least describe what the Ebbinghaus experiment was about, because if you know the name at all you're going to associate it with memory.
packet 1 wrote:Early in this novel’s last chapter, there is a digression about Roman archeology. A major character in this novel has two brothers who died at the Battle of Verdun. A butcher shop in this novel is run by the Gretz family, while a snack bar is run by Erika, whose brother Ferdi is executed for trying to kill one of his teachers. One character in this novel, Marianne, was nearly killed by her mother after her father committed suicide, but she was saved by the arrival of some strangers. One character in this novel adopts a (*) bellhop who is often compared to the lamb of God. In this novel, Johanna plans to shoot a gym teacher and Nazi nicknamed Old Wobbly, but fails and shoots a politician instead. The main character of this novel, who destroyed St. Anthony’s Abbey, plays the title game every morning in Prince Heinrich Hotel. For 10 points, name this novel about the Faehmel family by Heinrich Böll.
ANSWER: Billiards at Half-Past Nine [or Billard um halb zehn]
It's been a while since I've read Billiards, but again, this seems lacking in most of the interesting things about the book. The first sentence is especially vague; I suppose it's true of the answer, but I bet there are other things it could be true of as well.
packet 2 wrote:This ruler’s sister Anna Amalia secretly married Friedrich von der Trenck, leading this ruler to send her to the monastery of Quedlinburg. This ruler asked Johann Gotzkowsky to promote the porcelain industry in his polity. This ruler built St. Hedwig’s Cathedral, the first Catholic cathedral in this ruler’s capital since the Reformation. This ruler’s sister Wilhelmine was an important confidante of this ruler, who owned the rococo palace of Sanssouci. Following the capture of (*) Dresden’s mints, this ruler created debased Polish money, earning the kingdom some 25 million taler. He supported the Jesuits in the territories he gained in the First Partition of Poland. The Miracle of the House of Brandenburg saved this ruler from utter defeat in the Seven Years’ War. For 10 points, name this “great” Prussian king.
ANSWER: Frederick the Great [accept Frederick II; prompt on partial answers]
I guess this is supposed to be a tossup on Frederick's domestic achievements? Again, gradation matters; unless you are intimately familiar with the history of Porcelain or Frederick's various construction projects, it seems to me that you're not going to get a great deal of information from most of these clues other than "this is a Prussian ruler."
packet 2 wrote:After beheading Brahma, Shiva is cursed to undergo this process, which later causes havoc until sages are taught how to worship the linga. In Hurrian myth, Kumarbi performs this action on his father Anu before spitting on the ground. Skadi refuses to laugh until Loki makes a goat perform this action on him. The Galli underwent this action because they are the priests of a (*) shepherd who performed this action on himself, Attis. The priests of Attis’s consort, Cybele, also dressed up as women before they performed this action. Probably the most well known example of this action was performed with a sickle and resulted in the birth of Aphrodite from some white foam. For 10 points, name this painful action that Cronus performed on Uranus.
ANSWER: castration [be generous; accept obvious equivalents like genital mutilation, especially since Loki didn’t actually lose the function of his testicles]
Again, a huge game of chicken here. "Lingam" means phallus, so here we are sitting around and wondering if it's really the obvious thing. Oh look, it's something that various gods did to their progenitors and which sounds bad!
packet 2 wrote:This character first becomes the leader of his clan by discovering a cave behind a waterfall in which he makes his home. At one point, he frees the priests who are enslaved in the Cart Slow kingdom. He takes the Jingu Bang, which can shrink to fit in his ear, from the King of the East Sea. In one of his escapades, he is locked in a flaming cauldron, but escapes and defeats Er (*) Lang with a weapon that once supported the sea. After crashing a party, he attains immortality by eating the Heavenly Peaches. He embarks on his most famous adventure after being imprisoned for 500 years under a mountain by the Buddha, before being rescued by Xuanzang, whom he accompanies to retrieve sacred texts from India. For 10 points, name this primate character from Journey to the West.
ANSWER: Sun Wukong [accept Monkey King; accept Songokou]
A magical character from a Chinese novel? You don't say!
packet 2 wrote:This city was home to one of the first Civil Rights sit-ins at its Read’s Drug Store. Isaac Myers founded a shipping company as part of this city’s Fells Point shipping district, which was known for its employment of free blacks before the Civil War. One enslaved man who worked there was Frederick Douglass, who escaped from slavery on a boat that embarked from here. A pro-Confederate mob attacked a contingent of Union militia in its (*) Pratt Street Riot. This city’s 1904 great fire started at a building owned by John Hurst and led to the destruction of newspaper offices under the direction of H. L. Mencken, who was known as this city’s sage. It was founded around Locust Point by Cecil Calvert, and Francis Scott Key was imprisoned in Fort McHenry, near this city. For 10 points, name this city plagued by recent high crime rates, the most populous in Maryland.
ANSWER: Baltimore
It seems to me that Frederick Douglass being from Baltimore is a very well known thing.
packet 2 wrote:The Aramaic phrase “anathema marana tha” appears in the final section of this book. This book’s first section quotes Isaiah 29 and says that “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise.” This book says that the “last Adam” will be a “life-giving spirit.” This book’s 11th chapter states that while praying, women must have their head (*) covered. One section of this book states that “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child” and later goes on to state that “For now we see through a glass, darkly.” This book ends a discussion on the qualities that define love with the lines “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” For 10 points, name this Pauline epistle addressed to a Greek city.
ANSWER: First Epistle to the Corinthians [require both parts; prompt on partial answers]
I only post this question because the very first words almost made me buzz with The Jewish Cemetery at Newport (see stanza 11). I would not have been wrong.

More as I get around to it.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 10:49 am

On bonus variability, these two bonuses appeared in the same packet (2):
Ibis, Pip, and Nympha Negra are a few of this author’s many, many heteronyms. For 10 points each:
[10] This Portuguese author wrote of the “cold in Hadrian’s soul” in the poem “Antinous,” but is indubitably better known for his monumental Book of Disquiet.
ANSWER: Fernando Pessoa
[10] Pessoa was perhaps influenced by this “Portuguese Plautus,” who penned the line “the pursuit of love / is like falconry” back in the 1500s.
ANSWER: Gil Vicente
[10] This more recent Portuguese author wrote The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis, about another of Pessoa’s heteronyms. In another novel, he wrote of a woman who remains healthy as everyone else around her succumbs to blindness.
ANSWER: Jose Saramago
During one episode in this state, tax assessors ran out of town to cries of “Schlaget! Schlaget!” For 10 points each:
[10] Name this U.S. state, the site of the aforementioned Fries’s Rebellion.
ANSWER: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
[10] An earlier, better-known insurrection in Pennsylvania was this one, sparked by a tax placed on the namesake beverage.
ANSWER: Whiskey Rebellion
[10] Pennsylvania was also home to Dr. George Logan, the namesake of the Logan Act, which prohibits overly sensitive communications between U. S. citizens and a foreign government. Dr. Logan had committed such an act during this undeclared, primarily naval conflict.
ANSWER: Quasi-War with France
Apparently we're at the point now where Fernando Pessoa is so easy that we need to dig for a 16th century Portuguese writer. At the same time, here's a bonus that you can 30 with basic knowledge from high school American history.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
1992 in spaceflight
Auron
Posts: 1250
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:11 pm
Location: St. Louis-area, MO

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Wed Oct 03, 2012 10:57 am

I agree with Jerry on the Baltimore thing. I'm not familiar with the Pratt Street Riot, but it seems to me that the Pratt Street and even the Mencken clues are harder than Douglass.
Jacob O'Rourke
Washington (MO) HS Assistant Coach (2014-Present); MOQBA Secretary (2015-Present); HSAPQ Host Contact; NASAT Outreach Coordinator (2016 and 2017)
Formerly: Kirksville HS Assistant Coach (2012-2014); Truman State '14; and Pacific High (MO) '10


"And here we are as on a darkling plain, Swept by confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night."
Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach.

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:11 am

packet 3 wrote:In one by-election, all the candidates endorsed by this man had to sign a pledge to vote with his party, except for one man, who ran for office in Galway. Earlier, during the 1885 parliamentary elections, this man issued a manifesto ordering his followers to vote Tory, but realigned with the Liberals after a fallout with Salisbury’s government. The Times published fake letters allegedly signed by this man condoning the (*) Phoenix Park murders; those letters were actually written by Richard Pigott. From jail, this man negotiated an agreement with William Gladstone that included concessions for land tenants called the Kilmainham Treaty. He was declared morally unfit for leadership and removed from power after a divorce suit by William O’Shea, the husband of this man’s long-time mistress Katherine. For 10 points, name this man who was the first leader of the National Land League and a leader of the Irish Home Rule Party.
ANSWER: Charles Stewart Parnell
Where can this question possibly go after "Phoenix Park?" Again, a problem common to a lot of question in this set: the precipitous difficulty drop. Oh, so you say this is someone from the British Isles at the turn of the 19th century and IRELAND.
packet 3 wrote:This polarizability of this system is derived using first order perturbation of the eigenfunctions and is proportional to the third power of the characteristic length scale. The position of one of the components of this system is smeared out due to self-interaction in the Lamb shift. This (*) exactly solvable system has wavefunctions that are a product of generalized Laguerre polynomials and the spherical harmonics. Its excited states have energies that fall off like n squared and its ground state energy is 13.6eV. This system has a Coulomb potential and the Bohr model assumes that the negatively charged particle in this system travels in a circular orbit. For 10 points, name this quantum mechanical system that has a single proton orbited by a single electron.
ANSWER: hydrogen atom [accept hydrogen-like atom; prompt on H]
I'm not sure how unique the initial clue on the polarizability is; the second clue would have done better to actually describe the Lamb shift before mentioning it.
packet 3 wrote:A poet who wrote in this language who died in 2010 is known for collections such as The Candle, The String, and Fever. A long poem in this language ends with the image of a Christ figure in a snowstorm, who leads the march of twelve soldiers. One poem in this language repeats the refrain “Snow is falling,” while another says of the title figure that “his thick (*) fingers are bulky and fat like live-weights.” The first twenty years of the 20th century are referred to as the Silver Age of poetry in this language, and were marked by the flourishing of schools such as Acmeism, whose most noted adherent published Requiem and Poem Without a Hero. For 10 points, name this language used to write the poetry of Osip Mandelstam and Anna Akhmatova.
ANSWER: Russian [or russki]
This question is baffling. So, you're expecting that people might know individual poems by Bella Akhmadulina (!!!) but you're not going to give us her name, ever. The next line is one of the most famous Symbolist poems, although the poet is again not mentioned, ever, for some reason. "Stalin Epigram" seems to me a more famous thing than mentioning "Silver Age," (which would have done nothing for me had I gotten that far in the question), nor does it seem that either Requiem or Poem Without a Hero are quoted.

I think when writing questions like this for a regular audience, there's nothing wrong with throwing a few more famous lines in there (Pushkin, Pasternak, Yevtushenko) and progressing downward. The problem with this question is that it's simultaneously very easy to power and also pretty difficult.
packet 3 wrote:ANSWER: Philippe Pétain
It's a good practice to include full names. Although Wikipedia informs me that Petain is usually known as "Philippe Petain," he is better known to me as "Henri Petain" which happens to be his first name. Not a big deal, but useful for completeness' sake.

More bonus variability:
For 10 points each, name some things related to everyone’s favorite medieval manuscript, the Liber feudorum maior.
[10] The Liber feudorum maior was commissioned by Alfonso II from this state. Under Ferdinand II of this state, it combined with Castile, which was led by Isabella.
ANSWER: Kingdom of Aragon
[10] The Liber feudorum maior was notably this type of manuscript, which was decorated by gold or silver. They often featured colored miniature drawings, borders, and ornate decoration of certain letters.
ANSWER: illuminated manuscripts [accept word forms]
[10] The Liber feudorum maior contains charters granting castles to lords in this first major region to be added to Aragon. This maritime region and part of Charlemagne’s Spanish March is now a historical nationality within Spain.
ANSWER: Catalonia [accept Catalunya; accept Cataluna; accept Catalonha]
You can get 30 on this with a modicum of knowledge about European history (gee, what's maritime and notably hates being part of Spain?). On the other hand,
For 10 points each, name some cornerstones of Icelandic literature.
[10] This man told the story of Ormarr Örlygsson and his family in Guest the One-Eyed, and wrote about an infamous double murder committed on the farm of Sjöundá in The Black Cliffs.
ANSWER: Gunnar Gunnarsson
[10] This work, written by Halldór Laxness, recounts the struggles of the farmer Guðbjartur Jónsson, also known as Bjartur of Summerhouses.
ANSWWER: Independent People
[10] Gunnar Gunnarsson translated one of these long narratives named after Gretti into Danish. Another of them is named after Burnt Njal, and the one named after Egill is attributed to Snorri Sturluson.
ANSWER: sagas
EVERYONE KNOWS HALDOR LAXNESS. Ugh.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:12 am

The Two Hearts of Kwasi Boachi wrote:I agree with Jerry on the Baltimore thing. I'm not familiar with the Pratt Street Riot, but it seems to me that the Pratt Street and even the Mencken clues are harder than Douglass.
As it happens, I sat there thinking "can this really be Baltimore?" and then I heard "Pratt Street." It so happens that I was just in Baltimore a few weeks ago and walked down Pratt Street.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
Fond du lac operon
Wakka
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Fond du lac operon » Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:53 pm

grapesmoker wrote:
packet 1 wrote:Whether a task is completed or uncompleted affects this phenomenon, according to an effect named for a student of Kurt Lewin, Bluma Zeigarnik. One model of this phenomenon was originally a two-stage model, but later incorporated the “sensory” type of this phenomenon; that model was developed by Atkinson and Shiffrin. The experimental study of this phenomenon was pioneered by Hermann (*) Ebbinghaus, who studied it using nonsense syllables and came up with an exponential curve representing its decline. The misinformation effect retroactively interferes with this phenomenon, and has been extensively studied by Elizabeth Loftus. One form of it is aided by chunking, and a paper by George Miller cites “seven plus or minus two” as the “magic number” for its “working” variety. For 10 points, name this phenomenon which comes in long-term and short-term varieties.
ANSWER: memory
This question has basically the same problem as the Minderbinder tossup; the early clue is interesting and something I didn't know, the second clue isn't much easier, and then it goes downhill to "Ebbinghaus" very quickly. I think you should at least describe what the Ebbinghaus experiment was about, because if you know the name at all you're going to associate it with memory.
There's some gradation in this question for sure; I buzzed off the Atkinson-Shifrin model, which is quite well-known, although Ebbinghaus may well be placed too early.
Harrison Brown
Centennial '08, Alabama '13

"No idea what [he's] talking about."

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:16 pm

Fond du lac operon wrote:There's some gradation in this question for sure; I buzzed off the Atkinson-Shifrin model, which is quite well-known, although Ebbinghaus may well be placed too early.
I don't know if it's "well-known" at all; I actually work in a field that heavily leverages research on memory and memory-related topics, and I've only seen tangential references to it. Perhaps this is a thing that is covered in classes owing to historical interest, but from the standpoint of applications, the model is quite dated and much more sophisticated models exist. I'm happy to believe that the A-S model is a marginally easier clue than the one preceding it, but that doesn't really change the fundamental problem of the question, which is two rather hard clues followed by a substantially easier one.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:06 pm

Oh, one thing that really got my goat:
packet 10 wrote:The core of this man’s thought was critiqued in a Richard Posner article...
ANSWER: Robert Bork
This is a pretty terrible way of starting this question; only a few weeks ago, Posner published a pretty major article in The New Republic laying out his criticism of Antonin Scalia. It is entirely fair to say that the article represented a critique of the "core" of Scalia's thought. So of course I buzzed there and was negged. I realize that not everyone is going to know the intricacies of judiciary inside baseball, but I think it's not unreasonable to at least consider looking up what other people Richard Posner, a notably popular (for a judge) writer, has or has not critiqued, and when and in what works.

This question is emblematic of many questions in the tournament as a whole in that it contains a salient clue that's just too vague (in this case, it's the first clue and matches multiple people) to do the work that it needs to do. It's extremely frustrating to sit there knowing multiple things about Robert Bork and watch the tossup run to the end because you were basically hosed by a lousy first clue. As it happens, I lost this game to Illinois quite handily so no protest would have saved me anyway. More frustrating still because all of this could be changed with a little judicious rearrangement of words to indicate that the Posner article is titled after "this man and Beethoven" first, then go on to talk about the substance. That was a common problem throughout the set with clues just being dropped in with zero context or explanation.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
Beast Mode
Lulu
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 12:47 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by Beast Mode » Thu Oct 04, 2012 12:10 am

grapesmoker wrote:
packet 3 wrote:In one by-election, all the candidates endorsed by this man had to sign a pledge to vote with his party, except for one man, who ran for office in Galway. Earlier, during the 1885 parliamentary elections, this man issued a manifesto ordering his followers to vote Tory, but realigned with the Liberals after a fallout with Salisbury’s government. The Times published fake letters allegedly signed by this man condoning the (*) Phoenix Park murders; those letters were actually written by Richard Pigott. From jail, this man negotiated an agreement with William Gladstone that included concessions for land tenants called the Kilmainham Treaty. He was declared morally unfit for leadership and removed from power after a divorce suit by William O’Shea, the husband of this man’s long-time mistress Katherine. For 10 points, name this man who was the first leader of the National Land League and a leader of the Irish Home Rule Party.
ANSWER: Charles Stewart Parnell
Where can this question possibly go after "Phoenix Park?" Again, a problem common to a lot of question in this set: the precipitous difficulty drop. Oh, so you say this is someone from the British Isles at the turn of the 19th century and IRELAND.
grapesmoker wrote:
During one episode in this state, tax assessors ran out of town to cries of “Schlaget! Schlaget!” For 10 points each:
[10] Name this U.S. state, the site of the aforementioned Fries’s Rebellion.
ANSWER: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
[10] An earlier, better-known insurrection in Pennsylvania was this one, sparked by a tax placed on the namesake beverage.
ANSWER: Whiskey Rebellion
[10] Pennsylvania was also home to Dr. George Logan, the namesake of the Logan Act, which prohibits overly sensitive communications between U. S. citizens and a foreign government. Dr. Logan had committed such an act during this undeclared, primarily naval conflict.
ANSWER: Quasi-War with France
Apparently we're at the point now where Fernando Pessoa is so easy that we need to dig for a 16th century Portuguese writer. At the same time, here's a bonus that you can 30 with basic knowledge from high school American history.
Concerning these questions, you’re absolutely right, as I learned reading them to players. I’d never heard of Fries’s Rebellion and knew little about Parnell before writing these questions, but after writing them I should’ve at least done an hsquizbowl or NAQT search to evaluate them. I apologize.
grapesmoker wrote:
packet 1 wrote:This character paints over images supporting “such laudable ideals as Courage, Might, Justice, Truth, Liberty, Love, Honor, and Patriotism.” In his last appearance, this character abandons his friend’s quest to find the twelve-year-old sister of a prostitute in order to find some illegal tobacco. This man defends himself at a hearing, saying, “If we pay the government everything we owe it, we’ll only … discourage other individuals from (*) bombing their own men and planes.” That comes after he orders a strafing run on his own camp. This man gives a note bearing the words “A Share” to a man who demands his share of the syndicate run by this man. The first known activity of that syndicate is buying eggs for seven cents and selling them to the kitchen for five cents. For 10 points, name this profiteering mess hall officer in Catch-22 who runs a namesake M & M Enterprise.
ANSWER: Milo Minderbinder [accept either name]
This question kind of sucks. I've read Catch-22 several times, and I don't think any of those clues are from any really memorable scenes. Also, if I recall the second clue correctly, it refers to the end of Catch-22 but that would make it incorrect to refer to it as Milo's "last" appearance, as he also appears in Closing Time. But that's really neither here nor there; my main complaint here is that it's very hard to buzz on anything before "bombing their own planes," after which it's trivially easy to buzz, because that's a major incident in the book.
I disagree about this tossup, though. Since Milo’s syndicate activities pervade the book I put stuff about that toward the end of the question. Having the strafing run clue in the middle of the tossup doesn’t strike me as bad because the words “strafing run” are out of power, and if you’ve read the book or read enough about it then I think you deserve a buzz in the middle of a tossup, since it was your reading that made it “trivially easy.” For the beginning, then, I wanted to use clues that didn’t refer to the syndicate. The first clue isn’t mine, so I’ll leave that alone, but the illegal tobacco scene is memorable for me because Yosarian is showing an uncharacteristic amount of concern for another human being and Milo just ditches him because he’s the same old Milo. I’m curious what other Catch-22 scenes you’d consider more “memorable” and more worthy of being in the tossup. (I do apologize for not specifying “in his last appearance in one novel.” Dumb of me to forget that Catch-22 has a sequel.)
Saul Hankin
Michigan '13, '18
Yiddish Book Center '13-'14, Columbia '16

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:35 am

For one, I think the clue about the men being asked to eat the surplus cotton is quite memorable, to me anyway. Obviously you don't want to drop the syndicate early, and I'm not saying that the second clue is terrible, but when you put it all together in the question you've got, it doesn't go very well. Here, let me walk through this{
This character paints over images supporting “such laudable ideals as Courage, Might, Justice, Truth, Liberty, Love, Honor, and Patriotism.”
Searching my electronic copy of the book, I see that this is a reference to what Milo does to the planes given to him by General Dreedle. But I think it's hardly disputable that this is not even a plot point in the book; it's just a minor anecdote, and you'd really have to dig deep to remember that. You might say, ok, that's fine as a first clue, but the second clue is:
In his last appearance, this character abandons his friend’s quest to find the twelve-year-old sister of a prostitute in order to find some illegal tobacco.
I think that would actually be a good first clue here, for the reasons you describe. What I would have done was describe the scene a little bit more, mention the Italian who talks about the illegal tobacco. Something to stimulate some associative recall; it's possible to work backward from "twelve year old sister of a prostitute" and "illegal tobacco" to remembering that incident, but I think it's very hard. If you don't use the first sentence to pull a very minor, context-free quote from the book, you can use the space to expand on this clue. Next:
This man defends himself at a hearing, saying, “If we pay the government everything we owe it, we’ll only … discourage other individuals from (*) bombing their own men and planes.”
I just don't see anything in this sentence until the power mark that would really help me even identify what book we're in. And then you drop the "bombing their own men" and that's bad because that's literally one of the major incidents in the book, which it keeps coming back to again and again. Yeah, the "syndicate" thing and the egg-buying are marginally more famous, but this isn't an obscure work of literature, it's a major novel that a great number of people read. And that's why putting a major incident from the novel in the middle of the question, when preceded by clues that make it very hard to even figure out what's happening, is a problem. It's not that every individual clue is terrible, it's that when put together in the way that they are in this question, they are likely to result in blank stares up to the middle followed by immediate buzzes as people recognize the famous bit.

Maybe this isn't quizbowl orthodoxy (I know that Ryan Westbrook disagrees with me on this, for example), but I happen to think that contextual clues are really useful. Even if I can't name the exact incident that every clue describes, I should have some shot at narrowing down the world of possible answers as the question progresses. With that question as it stands, I don't think there's a really viable way for anyone to do that; if you don't remember that exact incident, you can't do anything. The problem with that is that general words like "prostitute" and "hearing" and "government" don't help you there at all. The nature of the game is such that you're invariably going to wind up retelling a lot of decontextualized anecdotes from a literary work in a tossup, and that's fine; however, I think it's good practice to pack in as much information as you can into those clues, especially information that helps you figure out things like what era the book is from and so on. I actually thought the "Ishmael" tossup in this same set was a decent example of that (well, semi-decent, because once you get to sermons about Jonah, it seems like there aren't too many whale-inspired literary works around); you've got a clue in there about a character who is thought to represent the Barnburners (or something like that?) so already I'm thinking, hey, this is a work of 19th century American literature, likely set sometime around the 1830s. That's a good clue because it helps me narrow down what kinds of things are plausible answers even though I don't in fact know whether Ishmael represents the Barnburners or whatever.

I hope what I'm saying here makes sense. I'm trying to walk through a process of thinking about the question and claiming that the better questions are ones which facilitate this process without giving the game away (c.f. those tossups on "tobacco" and "slaves"). That's a fine line to walk, and even the best question writers sometimes wind up too far to one or the other side of it, but I think those are the questions that are most enjoyable to play because they are the kinds of questions that allow you to think through them.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

kdroge
Wakka
Posts: 141
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2006 9:22 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by kdroge » Thu Oct 04, 2012 12:54 pm

Edit: Double Post
Last edited by kdroge on Thu Oct 04, 2012 1:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Kurtis Droge
East Lansing 08, Michigan 12, Louisville 17

kdroge
Wakka
Posts: 141
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2006 9:22 am

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by kdroge » Thu Oct 04, 2012 12:56 pm

grapesmoker wrote:Oh, one thing that really got my goat:
packet 10 wrote:The core of this man’s thought was critiqued in a Richard Posner article...
ANSWER: Robert Bork
This is a pretty terrible way of starting this question; only a few weeks ago, Posner published a pretty major article in The New Republic laying out his criticism of Antonin Scalia. It is entirely fair to say that the article represented a critique of the "core" of Scalia's thought. So of course I buzzed there and was negged. I realize that not everyone is going to know the intricacies of judiciary inside baseball, but I think it's not unreasonable to at least consider looking up what other people Richard Posner, a notably popular (for a judge) writer, has or has not critiqued, and when and in what works.
I was completely unaware of Posner's attack of Scalia; if I had known that was particularly notable (or if it is, even), I would have switched the ordering, but I'm sure plenty have people have had their thought compared to Beethoven or been attacked by Posner, so I think that it's a little absurd to expect to be right when buzzing there anyways no matter what the clue ordering is.
grapesmoker wrote:
packet 3 wrote: More bonus variability:For 10 points each, name some things related to everyone’s favorite medieval manuscript, the Liber feudorum maior.
[10] The Liber feudorum maior was commissioned by Alfonso II from this state. Under Ferdinand II of this state, it combined with Castile, which was led by Isabella.
ANSWER: Kingdom of Aragon
[10] The Liber feudorum maior was notably this type of manuscript, which was decorated by gold or silver. They often featured colored miniature drawings, borders, and ornate decoration of certain letters.
ANSWER: illuminated manuscripts [accept word forms]
[10] The Liber feudorum maior contains charters granting castles to lords in this first major region to be added to Aragon. This maritime region and part of Charlemagne’s Spanish March is now a historical nationality within Spain.
ANSWER: Catalonia [accept Catalunya; accept Cataluna; accept Catalonha]
I actually think thought that this bonus was one of the hardest in the whole tournament, and I pushed hard to have the Catalonia clues include the historical nationality for the middle part. The easy part is actually pretty tough (if you don't remember Ferdinand of Aragon, it's pretty much a crapshoot as to what to guess) and illuminated manuscripts is something that really doesn't show up in qb ever. Even with the historical nationality, the last part could very easily be Basque unless you know the Charlemagne clue (which I think is pretty hard also).
grapesmoker wrote:
During one episode in this state, tax assessors ran out of town to cries of “Schlaget! Schlaget!” For 10 points each:
[10] Name this U.S. state, the site of the aforementioned Fries’s Rebellion.
ANSWER: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
[10] An earlier, better-known insurrection in Pennsylvania was this one, sparked by a tax placed on the namesake beverage.
ANSWER: Whiskey Rebellion
[10] Pennsylvania was also home to Dr. George Logan, the namesake of the Logan Act, which prohibits overly sensitive communications between U. S. citizens and a foreign government. Dr. Logan had committed such an act during this undeclared, primarily naval conflict.
ANSWER: Quasi-War with France
I agree this was too easy. When I was editing, I figured that the first part would be about as hard as having a bonus part on Fries' Rebellion, which it was not.
grapesmoker wrote:
packet 1 wrote:One of these geographic features contains an endpoint near a town whose name literally translates as “burning water,” Ai-Ais, and is most often viewed from Hobas. Another of these geographical features contains the archaeological site of Buffalo Eddy and is home to a town named Pittsburg Landing. A different example of this feature is traversed by the Chihuahua al Pacifico railroad and is home to the Tarahumara people, who were driven there from the more fertile land around it by the Spanish. One of the largest ones in the world is found in Namibia and named after the (*) Fish River. Kaibab National Forest is located near the most notable one in the U. S., which can be seen from the Lipan and Guano Points. For 10 points, name these features that include the Copper one in Mexico, the Hells one, carved by the Snake River, and the Grand one, carved by the Colorado River.
ANSWER: canyons [accept synonyms such as gorges; accept more specific answers]
I'm a geographic imbecile, so maybe I'm wrong here, but I feel like this basically has no gradation whatsoever. Most of the early clues seem downright unhelpful and I'm not sure "Tarahumara" is going to get anyone to say "canyons" any more than, say, "Buffalo Eddy" is.
I get that this is a little gimmicky, and I would say that the whole "this can't be a tossup on canyons" may have been more of a problem than the clue ordering. If you have looked up / been to Hells or Copper Canyons, the second and third sentences should be helpful, and the existence of the Fish River Canyon has shown up before in questions on Namibia.
grapesmoker wrote:
packet 1 wrote:Whether a task is completed or uncompleted affects this phenomenon, according to an effect named for a student of Kurt Lewin, Bluma Zeigarnik. One model of this phenomenon was originally a two-stage model, but later incorporated the “sensory” type of this phenomenon; that model was developed by Atkinson and Shiffrin. The experimental study of this phenomenon was pioneered by Hermann (*) Ebbinghaus, who studied it using nonsense syllables and came up with an exponential curve representing its decline. The misinformation effect retroactively interferes with this phenomenon, and has been extensively studied by Elizabeth Loftus. One form of it is aided by chunking, and a paper by George Miller cites “seven plus or minus two” as the “magic number” for its “working” variety. For 10 points, name this phenomenon which comes in long-term and short-term varieties.
ANSWER: memory
This question has basically the same problem as the Minderbinder tossup; the early clue is interesting and something I didn't know, the second clue isn't much easier, and then it goes downhill to "Ebbinghaus" very quickly. I think you should at least describe what the Ebbinghaus experiment was about, because if you know the name at all you're going to associate it with memory.
I really liked this tossup. The first sentence is pretty hard, but I don't think that's too much of a problem; all of the other clues strike me as notable. I do agree that description of Ebbinghaus's experiment and the description of the forgetting curve should probably be dropped before Ebbinghaus's name.
grapesmoker wrote:
packet 2 wrote:This city was home to one of the first Civil Rights sit-ins at its Read’s Drug Store. Isaac Myers founded a shipping company as part of this city’s Fells Point shipping district, which was known for its employment of free blacks before the Civil War. One enslaved man who worked there was Frederick Douglass, who escaped from slavery on a boat that embarked from here. A pro-Confederate mob attacked a contingent of Union militia in its (*) Pratt Street Riot. This city’s 1904 great fire started at a building owned by John Hurst and led to the destruction of newspaper offices under the direction of H. L. Mencken, who was known as this city’s sage. It was founded around Locust Point by Cecil Calvert, and Francis Scott Key was imprisoned in Fort McHenry, near this city. For 10 points, name this city plagued by recent high crime rates, the most populous in Maryland.
ANSWER: Baltimore
It seems to me that Frederick Douglass being from Baltimore is a very well known thing.
Yeah, I definitely underestimated people's knowledge about Douglass. I think that moving the Douglass clue after the Pratt Street Riot clue is a good idea, and maybe even after the Mencken clue (though I think Mencken being the sage of Baltimore is pretty notable too). I don't think the Pratt Street clue needs to go just because you can get the tossup from having been there, though.

EDIT(s): Me not being able to quote properly.
Kurtis Droge
East Lansing 08, Michigan 12, Louisville 17

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Thu Oct 04, 2012 1:59 pm

kdroge wrote:I was completely unaware of Posner's attack of Scalia; if I had known that was particularly notable (or if it is, even), I would have switched the ordering, but I'm sure plenty have people have had their thought compared to Beethoven or been attacked by Posner, so I think that it's a little absurd to expect to be right when buzzing there anyways no matter what the clue ordering is.
I'm not saying you have to be aware of everything Posner writes; I'm saying that the way you phrased this question makes me buzzing at "The core of this man's thought was critiqued in a Richard Posner article" with "Antonin Scalia" indisputably correct. You cannot dodge this by pointing out that Posner is likely to have criticized many people, because that is exactly the point. I should be able to buzz there, given the information provided, and give the name of literally any person whose core thought has ever been criticized in a Posner article because that is the way the question is phrased.

There's a trivially simple fix for this problem! You need merely write "In an article titled for this man and Beethoven, Richard Posner noted the inconsistency between Commentary's praise of this man's 1990 book and Samuel Lipman's music criticism." Not only does this definitively point to "Bork" as the answer, but it gives you a wealth of contextual clues to work with. Who was writing books in 1990? What kind of magazine is Commentary and what sorts of things might it be praising? Who is Samuel Lipman? These are deep nuggets of information that give you a lot to think about, and eliminate alternative answers besides. That's the point of my response above to Saul, and it applies equally to this question as well.
grapesmoker wrote:spain
I actually think thought that this bonus was one of the hardest in the whole tournament
You cannot be serious. Again, this question is 30able with basic European history knowledge. "If you don't remember" the state that united with Castille to form modern Spain, then you don't know anything about European history! I mean, this is high school level stuff. Also, illuminated manuscripts are things that, while I have no idea how much they "show up in qb" (why is that even a criterion?) are a thing that is totally known by, again, people with a basic grounding in European history, i.e. people who went to a reasonably decent high school. You don't even need to know the Charlemagne clue to get Catalonia, you just need to know that it borders France.

None of these parts are bad in and of themselves, but you've got one damn easy bonus here. By contrast, this tournament included a number of much harder bonuses, including some I've posted here. The Ivanhoe bonus asked you to recall a Spanish word which appears (I checked) a total of 4 times in the book, which I think is much harder than getting "Catalonia" from "this Spanish maritime region with a notable independent streak." I really don't think those are commensurably difficult bonus parts (to say nothing of our friend Gunnar Gunnarson).
I don't think the Pratt Street clue needs to go just because you can get the tossup from having been there, though.
Sorry, didn't mean to imply that. I just meant that it helped me buzz when I was already leaning in that direction. I think that clue was fine where it was.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
1992 in spaceflight
Auron
Posts: 1250
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:11 pm
Location: St. Louis-area, MO

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Thu Oct 04, 2012 2:07 pm

Yeah, I was saying (rather poorly) that I thought the Douglass clue should go after the Pratt Street clue, and maybe the Mencken clue. Sorry if I sounded like I was saying something else.

Also, the tossup on slaves looked really awesome, since that was stuff we learned about in class recently.
Jacob O'Rourke
Washington (MO) HS Assistant Coach (2014-Present); MOQBA Secretary (2015-Present); HSAPQ Host Contact; NASAT Outreach Coordinator (2016 and 2017)
Formerly: Kirksville HS Assistant Coach (2012-2014); Truman State '14; and Pacific High (MO) '10


"And here we are as on a darkling plain, Swept by confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night."
Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach.

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Thu Oct 04, 2012 2:14 pm

These bonuses are two questions apart in the same packet, and were written by the same person:
You are a citizen of Austria-Hungary in the early 20th century. Answer these questions about your country’s last days, for 10 points each:
[10] Doubtless you were shocked and distraught when Gavrilo Princip assassinated this Archduke of yours while he visited Sarajevo.
ANSWER: Archduke Franz Ferdinand
[10] Lucky for your soldiers, the Germans decided to help out in this battle on the Italian Front that began October 24, 1917. Too bad your victory here led the Allies to create the Supreme War Council and get their act together.
ANSWER: Battle of Caporetto or 12th Battle of the Isonzo River or Schlacht von Karfreit [prompt on “Isonzo River”]
[10] Your belief in Central Power unity was probably shattered following this affair late in the war. In this affair, Clemenceau published Emperor Charles I’s correspondence with the namesake person asking for peace with the Allies.
ANSWER: Sixtus Affair
In this case, the Supreme Court ruled that the Contract Clause of the Constitution prohibits states from altering the obligations of a contract. For 10 points each:
[10] Name this 1819 case brought before the Supreme Court after the New Hampshire legislature tried to amend a 1769 charter issued by King George III.
ANSWER: Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward
[10] This then-lawyer argued on behalf of the Dartmouth trustees before the Supreme Court. Later, as secretary of state, he negotiated an 1842 treaty establishing the border between Maine and New Brunswick with Ashburton.
ANSWER: Daniel Webster
[10] The plaintiff in this 1837 Supreme Court case tried to cite the Dartmouth case in complaining that the state of Massachusetts violated a 1785 charter concerning the namesake architectural feature.
ANSWER: Charles River Bridge v. Warren Bridge
There's nothing wrong with either bonus on their own. They're perfectly fine, but I would suggest that they really don't belong in the same set. I think the Sixtus affair is quite hard, and the battle of Caporetto is not that much easier. I think this bonus is actually about the right level of difficulty for what I understood this tournament to be. On the other hand, the American history bonus is very, very easy because it touches on things that are covered in any reasonably decent high school history class. Dartmouth v. Woodward and Webster are just flat out basic, and Charles River Bridge isn't much harder, even if you know nothing about the actual details; I certainly didn't, but I know what "architectural features" means and I know such a case exists, so it's probably that.

I really don't think these are comparable. One of them draws on reasonably deep knowledge of the details behind WWI diplomacy and military actions; the other draws on things that are covered in most high school history classes (certainly covered in my AP US History class way back in the day). For the record, I think the difficulty level of the tournament as a whole is probably closer to the first bonus. And I also understand that there's going to be some inherent variability due to people knowing different things; I'm generally not going to convert hard (or even probably medium) parts of music bonuses but that doesn't mean they're inappropriate. But I think there's a real variance here that goes beyond just "you know this so it's easy" and that's rooted in some measure of objective difficulty regarding the material being asked and the contexts in which it's covered.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6360
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Question-specific discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Thu Oct 04, 2012 2:22 pm

The Two Hearts of Kwasi Boachi wrote:Also, the tossup on slaves looked really awesome, since that was stuff we learned about in class recently.
The problem with that question is that afte the first clues, it was basically "This good notably extracted from Africa by the Portuguese." I guess there are other options than "slaves" here, but "slaves" is definitely the most obvious one. The same with the "tobacco" tossup: the whole question is "this North American cash crop that grows in the mid-Atlantic." Ok, it might be something else, but what are you going to go with?

This is the inverse of "give contextual clues." If you give so many clues so early that you've basically eliminated other plausible options, you don't have anything left.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

Locked