EFT 2016: Specific Question Discussion

Old college threads.
User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

EFT 2016: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Mon Sep 19, 2016 4:47 pm

Nitpick/discuss specific questions here.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

User avatar
Irreligion in Bangladesh
Auron
Posts: 2058
Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2004 1:18 am
Location: Winnebago, IL

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Mon Sep 19, 2016 9:17 pm

(Caveat: this is the nitpick thread, so I'm doing the "critique a couple questions, don't talk about broad themes of what went well" thing. I've got other feedback, too!)

Could you post the tossup on menstruation? I had a sentence-two buzz with pregnancy on a clue that seemed applicable to either (or, better yet, to ovulation, which is what I would have said if given 30 seconds to think instead of 5), so it's probably worth it to check the specifics of that for future mirrors. (We protested in-game, but it didn't affect the outcome and I don't know if you guys took care of it as a result.)

That, plus the tossup on (whichever of Triassic/Jurassic/Cretaceous was in the answer line instead of the clues) where the chronology seemed mistaken, are the only two questions I remember specific problems with; I think I'm forgetting one or two others, but everything else was a blast.

While playing, Noah and I critiqued the continuum hypothesis/Hilbert/infinity bonus as being way too easy; we're both math people, so continuum hypothesis didn't strike us as "a hard part" for what the set was around it, and we called the bonus a HS bonus when it wrapped up with the easy part. I stand by the "this is a HS bonus" call, but only grounds of "there are high schoolers writing misguided housewrites where they think that's what a good middle part is;" i.e., it's a HS question, but it shouldn't be and we have other sets to blame. This was solid and well-written.
Brad Fischer
Head Editor, IHSA State Series

Winnebago HS ('06)
Northern Illinois University ('10)
Assistant Coach, IMSA (2010-12)
Coach, Keith Country Day School (2012-16)

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Mon Sep 19, 2016 9:46 pm

Irreligion in Bangladesh wrote:While playing, Noah and I critiqued the continuum hypothesis/Hilbert/infinity bonus as being way too easy; we're both math people, so continuum hypothesis didn't strike us as "a hard part" for what the set was around it, and we called the bonus a HS bonus when it wrapped up with the easy part. I stand by the "this is a HS bonus" call, but only grounds of "there are high schoolers writing misguided housewrites where they think that's what a good middle part is;" i.e., it's a HS question, but it shouldn't be and we have other sets to blame. This was solid and well-written.
We made this observation internally as well and plan on changing the bonus accordingly.

The Triassic error was caught earlier, but somehow managed to escape into the set. We apologize; the question is now fixed.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Mon Sep 19, 2016 10:14 pm

Irreligion in Bangladesh wrote:
Could you post the tossup on menstruation? I had a sentence-two buzz with pregnancy on a clue that seemed applicable to either (or, better yet, to ovulation, which is what I would have said if given 30 seconds to think instead of 5), so it's probably worth it to check the specifics of that for future mirrors. (We protested in-game, but it didn't affect the outcome and I don't know if you guys took care of it as a result.)
I'm on my phone and can't post the tossup right now, but I thought about it and if you buzzed on the prolactin inhibition thing I guess you're technically right since the mechanism is to prevent nursing mothers from getting pregnant again (but by inhibiting that step of the menstrual cycle). The answer line accepts every phase of the menstrual cycle so ovulation would've been correct. I think this is a systematic issue of the answer cutting too wide of a swath--I'll be fixing that.
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Irreligion in Bangladesh
Auron
Posts: 2058
Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2004 1:18 am
Location: Winnebago, IL

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:47 am

I was on the basal temperature increase clue. Good to hear that ovulation is in the answer line.
Brad Fischer
Head Editor, IHSA State Series

Winnebago HS ('06)
Northern Illinois University ('10)
Assistant Coach, IMSA (2010-12)
Coach, Keith Country Day School (2012-16)

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Tue Sep 20, 2016 7:54 am

Irreligion in Bangladesh wrote:I was on the basal temperature increase clue. Good to hear that ovulation is in the answer line.

Oh yeah, I didn't realize that; poor wording on my part. Thanks for the catch!
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Sam
Rikku
Posts: 263
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 2:35 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Sam » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:35 am

Two nitpicks:
1) I may be misremembering and disregard if that is the case, but it sounded like the first clue of the "demand" tossups said an Engel curve was more or less a rotated demand curve. I'm not sure if that's true; the independent variable for demand curves is price, compared to income for Engel curves. There's obviously some relation but they're not identical. (On a more positive note, I thought the clue about a monopolist's marginal revenue when demand is linear was a good example of a fact that isn't obvious but which you can be confident everyone who has taken an introductory class in the subject has seen, so kudos for that [to that?].)

2) In addition to "technology" and "technical change," I'd accept "total factor productivity" or "multifactor productivity" for the last part of the growth bonus.
Sam Bailey
Minnesota 'xx
Chicago '13

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:50 am

Thanks for catching the total productivity factor thing. As for the Engel curve clue, I think I added that lead-in fairly lazily (the rest are mainly drawn from introductory curricula) and see why it might be suboptimal, but (EDIT here) the clue states that the Engel curve looks like a demand curve but with a different independent variable:
Packet 4 wrote:10. Except for the fact that Engel curves plot income [emphasize] on the y-axis, graphic representations of this value are nearly identical to Engel curves. If a function for this value is linear, then in a monopolistic market, the marginal revenue function has a slope twice that of the function representing this quantity. Functions for this value can be derived by plotting quantities from bundles along the price-consumption curve against the (*) prices determining the budget constraints on those bundles. Functions for this value have positive slopes in the case of Giffen goods. The Slutsky equation relates changes in uncompensated and compensated varieties of this value, describing the substitution and income effects. For 10 points, identify this economic function paired with supply.
ANSWER: demand (function) [accept Marshallian demand or Hicksian demand] <SocSci, WA>
I'm not sure I'll keep this clue, but if it works then I wonder if there's a way I can word it better.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

User avatar
Sam
Rikku
Posts: 263
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 2:35 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Sam » Sun Sep 25, 2016 2:28 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote: I'm not sure I'll keep this clue, but if it works then I wonder if there's a way I can word it better.
I worry "nearly identical" is filling in for a phrase like "associated with" here. Graphically, the curves don't look all that similar (they frequently go in opposite directions), so it feels like the clue is mostly just there to prime players to think of "stuff related to Engel curves." If you want to keep an Engel curve clue I'd just describe how it shows up in that setting, or even something about the empirical results Engel found, rather than try to make a connection between the two graphs.

Questions in this tournament were good about not just spewing proper nouns, and that includes most of the parts of this tossup. The lead-in was a rare exception.
Sam Bailey
Minnesota 'xx
Chicago '13

User avatar
Bloodwych
Wakka
Posts: 144
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 3:12 pm
Location: not College Park anymore

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Bloodwych » Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:07 pm

Irreligion in Bangladesh wrote:Could you post the tossup on menstruation?
Can you still post this? I think I hesitated on this too because it confused me a bit as well. Thanks!
🚿
Quince Orchard HS '11
Maryland - College Park '15

I've got a tight grip on reality,
But I can't let go of what's in front of me here.
I know you're leaving in the morning when you wake up.
Leave me with some kind of proof it's not a dream.

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Sat Oct 01, 2016 10:04 pm

I've edited this question pretty heavily since the time of discussion, but here it is in its current form:
Packet 10 wrote:12. In one stage of this event, high levels of inhibin lead to selection of a single structure known as its Graafian type. High levels of prolactin production suppresses a hypothalamic hormone responsible for this event. This cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in (*) estrous cycles. During this event, theca and granulosa cells cooperate to form the corpus luteum. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to this event’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
ANSWER: menstrual cycle [accept ovarian or uterine cycle; accept follicular phase or ovulation or early or late luteal phase; accept menstruation or proliferative or secretory phase] <Bio, JC>
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

Eddie
Rikku
Posts: 442
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2012 6:59 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Eddie » Sun Oct 02, 2016 3:08 pm

Hi everyone,

To those who played this set, what is everyone negging Adonis with and are there any misleading or incorrect clues? It's had an abnormally high neg rate at every single site so far.
Eddie Kim
he/him/his
local lad, no major affiliations

User avatar
Pablo Picasso 2
Lulu
Posts: 61
Joined: Wed May 25, 2016 3:43 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Pablo Picasso 2 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:20 pm

Can you post the Hawaiian food/etc tossup?

I'm fairly certain it never mentioned it's a state until late in the TU, which makes sense if you're trying to hide "US state+vaguely Polynesian stuff", but I really don't remember what pronoun was used that lead me to neg. I thought it said "country" somewhere but that might have been me remembering wrongly.
Jeremy "JJ" Tsai
Rutgers 2018
President

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:45 pm

geremy wrote:Can you post the Hawaiian food/etc tossup?

I'm fairly certain it never mentioned it's a state until late in the TU, which makes sense if you're trying to hide "US state+vaguely Polynesian stuff", but I really don't remember what pronoun was used that lead me to neg. I thought it said "country" somewhere but that might have been me remembering wrongly.
The tossup doesn't say "country" anywhere.
Packet 2 wrote:17. A jerky-like substance whose name means “beef rope” was eaten by the cowboys of this region. Those cowboys were called paniolo, a name which may come from the word “Español” since this region’s language does not have an “s” sound. Food is commonly served with two scoops of rice and macaroni salad in this region in a meal simply called a “plate lunch.” This region created a dish consisting of a hamburger patty, fried egg, and gravy on top of rice called a (*) loco moco. Dishes from this place include a mashed taro paste called poi, as well as pork wrapped in banana leaves and cooked in an underground oven. A marinated ahi tuna salad from this region is called poke [POH-kay]. A food found in this state is effectively a piece of onigiri with a piece of grilled spam on top of it. For 10 points, name this U.S. state home to kalua pork, which may be eaten at a luau.
ANSWER: Hawaii [or Hawaiian islands; prompt on Polynesia] <Other, AW>
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Mon Oct 03, 2016 12:47 am

Spheal With It wrote: To those who played this set, what is everyone negging Adonis with and are there any misleading or incorrect clues? It's had an abnormally high neg rate at every single site so far.
I can't speak for anyone else, but one of my teammates negged this question with Perseus on the clue about being locked in a chest (yes, we all realize that that makes no sense in the context of the previous clue).
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:52 am

A question and a comment about the Finals 1 packet:

1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.

2/ The Ferdinand VII bonus part should accept Ferdinand the Desired (One) or Ferdinand el Deseado, since that's another nickname of his. It should also include a Spanish version of his "Felon King" nickname.

For that matter, based on the existing answer line, "Ferdinand the Felon King" seems only promptable; shouldn't that be acceptable as a uniquely identifying answer? At least, that's my interpretation of the existing answer line (accept Ferdinand VII, prompt on "Felon King" without Ferdinand), which seems to be ambiguous in that it ignores "Ferdinand the Felon King" as a potential answer.
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:28 am

Also, in Packet 8, stoßtruppen should be acceptable (or at least promptable) for "stormtroopers."
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:06 am

I'll let Andrew speak to the alchemy question. Thanks for noticing the misses on alternative answers; a lot of those questions were written later in production so we didn't go over them as much. We'll put those in.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

User avatar
Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode
Tidus
Posts: 653
Joined: Sun May 23, 2010 10:03 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode » Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:16 am

Charbroil wrote: 1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.
Possibly, but the clue lists the three wisdoms of Hermes Trismegistus which seem to alwasy be listed as alchemy/astrology/theurgy and also mentions theurgy (also considered a subset of magic) so if I'm listing some other subset of magic and saying there's more things there's not really a way to justify magic as being right imo
Andrew Wang
Illinois 2016

User avatar
Pablo Picasso 2
Lulu
Posts: 61
Joined: Wed May 25, 2016 3:43 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Pablo Picasso 2 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 12:18 pm

Can you post the history bonus that mentions the self-strengthening movement, which I think has the easy part with Cixi? (these might have been two different bonuses, not completely sure) I think the hard part wasn't very specific on naming the person involved.

And can you post the East Timor tossup, and the philosophy India tossup (which I loved btw)?
Last edited by Pablo Picasso 2 on Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Jeremy "JJ" Tsai
Rutgers 2018
President

User avatar
Ike
Yuna
Posts: 878
Joined: Sat Jul 26, 2008 5:01 pm
Contact:

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Ike » Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:53 pm

Bubalus Period wrote:
Charbroil wrote: 1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.
Possibly, but the clue lists the three wisdoms of Hermes Trismegistus which seem to alwasy be listed as alchemy/astrology/theurgy and also mentions theurgy (also considered a subset of magic) so if I'm listing some other subset of magic and saying there's more things there's not really a way to justify magic as being right imo
No, that's wrong.
6. The oldest texts regarding this practice were written by Zosimos of Panopolis, who wrote of Mary the Jewess, the namesake of the Axiom of Maria. An aspect of this practice was described as occurring through twelve keys by Basil Valentine. The line “Tis true without error, certain and most true” begins Isaac Newton’s translation of a text used in this field. Hermes Trismegistus’s three wisdoms were theurgy, (*) astrology, and this field, which is explored in his Emerald Tablet. This field’s magnum opus was represented with an ouroboros and was called chrysopoeia. This practice was influenced by Geber’s attempts to apply the qualities of hot, cold, dry, and moist to metals, which resulted in him theorizing that all metals were formed from mercury and sulfur. For 10 points, name this practice whose goals included the philosopher’s stone.
This is a bad tossup because no one really thought they were doing "alchemy," it's a term of convenience that describes a set of traditions that were only formalized much later. For example, in this translation of Basil Valentine, there is no mention of the word alchemy, and if you asked Basil Valentine what he was doing, he'd probably say something like "divine arts" rather than "alchemy." I negged this tossup with divination when Will read it to me, and I feel that none of these clues are remotely pinned down, saying stuff like "the oldest texts regarding this practice were written by Zosimos of Panopolis" is dubious at best, and the idea that the Emerald Tablet is uniquely used for alchemy is wrong.
Ike
UIUC 13

rehg98
Kimahri
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:00 pm
Location: Princeton, NJ

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by rehg98 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:56 pm

For the art tossup on "skulls", I buzzed on the first clue about Dali's "The Face of War" and said 'masks'. I don't think it's clear in that painting that the nested figures are skulls--I feel like both 'masks' and 'faces' could be acceptable answers. Regardless, I really liked the visual art in this set, especially the art bonuses; it was cool to hear people like Childe Hassam, Arshile Gorky, and Odilon Redon come up, who I've seen come up very rarely in my Quizbowl playing experience.

Also, to answer Eddie's question above about the high number of negs on the "Adonis" question, I'm pretty sure mostly everyone who negged that was tripped up by the chest clue. I reflex buzzed on the mention of the chest thinking Perseus, realized that was a stupid answer, then said Erichthonius, even though that was also a stupid answer. I feel like this type of thing also could've happened on the "Telemachus" question with the bow stringing clue; for what it's worth, I negged at that point with Odysseus, not realizing that the clue said he failed to string the bow. In general, I liked the myth in this set, though for some reason it felt a bit Greek and South Asian heavy.
Ryan Golant
Princeton '20
TJHSST '16

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:25 pm

rehg98 wrote:Regardless, I really liked the visual art in this set, especially the art bonuses; it was cool to hear people like Childe Hassam, Arshile Gorky, and Odilon Redon come up, who I've seen come up very rarely in my Quizbowl playing experience.
Welcome to the world of college quizbowl! Glad to hear that you enjoyed it - it was PC's first time writing and he did a good job balancing questions on easier and more challenging artists, I feel.

I think the South Asian heavy perception is influenced by quizbowl tournaments rarely asking more than one or two questions on South Asian myth, which seems odd to me given that:

1) South Asia is home to over 1.5 billion people
2) A lot of quizbowl players have real-world exposure to South Asian mythology

So we actively decided to incorporate more South Asian religion and mythology into this tournament on these grounds. Eddie can speak more to his distribution choices, but I think there are a number of good reasons to do this at this level. We actively avoided a lot of over-asked topics like the more common Shinto myth tales, the Kalevala, or a lot of Central and South America, and I think one factor was that you just need to go for more classical myth if you're going to do that.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:49 pm

I think the perception of "South Asia-heavy" might also have to do with the decent amount of East Asian religion in the set, which might easily be mixed up with myth on the day of a tournament by any number of players--in any case, I definitely agree with Will and Eddie on their subdistributional points, if only because it makes it easier (and more interesting!) to fill out a myth distribution without asking a hypothetical "standard EFT team" about things sourced from a single line in the Mabinogion or something in the arms race for fresh myth clues.
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Kasper Kaijanen
Lulu
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 7:00 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Kasper Kaijanen » Mon Oct 03, 2016 5:02 pm

Tossup 20 of round 8 was a jazz tossup on New York City, and then in the very next round, bonus 6 was a jazz bonus that recycled almost all of the same clues.

For what its worth, I also negged Adonis with Perseus.
Last edited by Kasper Kaijanen on Mon Oct 03, 2016 7:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Finn Bender
Edmond Memorial '15
OU '19

Eddie
Rikku
Posts: 442
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2012 6:59 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Eddie » Mon Oct 03, 2016 6:58 pm

The Adonis / Perseus confusion makes sense - that's definitely a glaring issue that I failed to catch, but it's been fixed for future mirrors. My sincerest apologies.

As for the two jazz bonuses, what happened was that there was initially a blues-themed TU and a swing-themed bonus, but after one of the mirrors we decided to swap them (i.e. turn the blues TU into a bonus and the swing bonus into a TU). During packetisation, I failed to delete the original swing-themed bonus, which resulted in both bonuses staying in that packet. This issue has also been rectified, thank you for bringing it to our attention.
Eddie Kim
he/him/his
local lad, no major affiliations

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:25 pm

Bubalus Period wrote:
Charbroil wrote: 1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.
Possibly, but the clue lists the three wisdoms of Hermes Trismegistus which seem to alwasy be listed as alchemy/astrology/theurgy and also mentions theurgy (also considered a subset of magic) so if I'm listing some other subset of magic and saying there's more things there's not really a way to justify magic as being right imo
My teammate buzzed in on the literal words "Hermes Trismegistus," which come before theurgy is mentioned.
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Mon Oct 03, 2016 10:34 pm

Charbroil wrote:
Bubalus Period wrote:
Charbroil wrote: 1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.
Possibly, but the clue lists the three wisdoms of Hermes Trismegistus which seem to alwasy be listed as alchemy/astrology/theurgy and also mentions theurgy (also considered a subset of magic) so if I'm listing some other subset of magic and saying there's more things there's not really a way to justify magic as being right imo
My teammate buzzed in on the literal words "Hermes Trismegistus," which come before theurgy is mentioned.
To me, that's like automatically buzzing with "special relativity" when you hear "theory" and "Einstein." There are other theories that Einstein worked on, so the fact that you didn't listen to the whole clue doesn't mean that the clue in and of itself is bad. I think magic should be a prompt.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Mon Oct 03, 2016 11:02 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:
Charbroil wrote:
Bubalus Period wrote:
Charbroil wrote: 1/ One of my teammates buzzed in with "magic" for the alchemy tossup at the Hermes Trismegistus clue; should the tossup have a prompt on that? Obviously, all of the previous clues point unambiguously to alchemy, but I was wondering if alchemy should be considered a subset of magic.
Possibly, but the clue lists the three wisdoms of Hermes Trismegistus which seem to alwasy be listed as alchemy/astrology/theurgy and also mentions theurgy (also considered a subset of magic) so if I'm listing some other subset of magic and saying there's more things there's not really a way to justify magic as being right imo
My teammate buzzed in on the literal words "Hermes Trismegistus," which come before theurgy is mentioned.
To me, that's like automatically buzzing with "special relativity" when you hear "theory" and "Einstein." There are other theories that Einstein worked on, so the fact that you didn't listen to the whole clue doesn't mean that the clue in and of itself is bad. I think magic should be a prompt.
I agree that it was a bad buzz; I was just responding to Andrew's argument that magic doesn't make sense as a buzz because theurgy was mentioned.
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

Charbroil
Auron
Posts: 1135
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:52 am
Location: St. Charles, MO

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Tue Oct 04, 2016 1:56 am

Jason Cheng wrote:I've edited this question pretty heavily since the time of discussion, but here it is in its current form:
Packet 10 wrote:12. In one stage of this event, high levels of inhibin lead to selection of a single structure known as its Graafian type. High levels of prolactin production suppresses a hypothalamic hormone responsible for this event. This cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in (*) estrous cycles. During this event, theca and granulosa cells cooperate to form the corpus luteum. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to this event’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
ANSWER: menstrual cycle [accept ovarian or uterine cycle; accept follicular phase or ovulation or early or late luteal phase; accept menstruation or proliferative or secretory phase] <Bio, JC>
I also found this tossup pretty confusing since I interpreted "event" as something that happens in a fairly brief period of time. Thus, I knew what was going on from the second clue but wasn't sure if you were going for menstruation or ovulation or some other discrete component of the menstrual cycle.

Maybe that's just me, but it seems like a better noun here might be "process"* or something else indicating that the answer line is something that continuously happens in the body rather than something that happens, stops completely for a period of time, and then might happen again depending on circumstances.

*The easiest way to deal with this issue would be to use "cycle," but that would probably cause new problems in terms of transparency.
Charles Hang
Francis Howell Central '09
St. Charles Community College '14
Washington University in St. Louis '19 (President, 2017-19)

Owner, Olympia Academic Competition Questions, LLC
Question Writer, National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC and National History Bee and Bowl

User avatar
Amizda Calyx
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 250
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Amizda Calyx » Tue Oct 04, 2016 4:17 pm

Oh boy. So I buzzed on "In one stage of this event, high levels of inhibin lead to selection of a single structure known as its Graafian type" with "folliculogenesis" because a) wtf is "Graafian menstruation"; b) this is exactly what happens in folliculogenesis: the antral follicle (aka Graafian follicle) is selected in the late tertiary phase of folliculogenesis (which coincides with the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle); c) FSH levels contribute to selection of the dominant follicle, not inhibin; d) menstruation is just a bad, bad idea for a biology tossup.

My other critiques/frustrations:
Round 1: "Ghosts"
I buzzed on "Jacob" with "the inhabitants of the apartment in the dream world" and was negged. I gave that answer because Jacob is described as a vampire, not a ghost, and I didn't' know that not all the clues would be about Ghost Sonata. I don't remember if the clue actually referred to him as "one of these beings" or whatever because I was mainly buzzing on the hyacinth clue and was just waiting until I heard something to confirm it was Ghost Sonata, so if it actually does say that he "isn't one of these title beings" then my bad.

Round 3: "Deposition/descent from the cross"
My answer off the Pontormo clue was approximately "there's no consensus on whether Jesus is being removed from the cross or being carried away for entombment in that painting, there isn't even a fucking cross in it, but I'll say 'taking Jesus down from the cross'". This was negged. Please stop using ambiguous Pontormo clues for deposition common links!!! Also the whole time the answer was referred to as "this scene", which I guess in the art world means something super specific and precludes descriptive answers?

Round 5: "islands"
I would like to see this tossup first since I may have just missed a disambiguating clue, but I buzzed in on "single large" with "fragmented habitats" and was negged. It is my understanding that the "rescue effect" can refer to any type of isolated community, not just literal water-surrounded islands, and I suspect the "single large" clue expanded into a description of the SLOSS debate, which was specifically about fragmented habitats.

Round 13: "kin"
I'm probably in the wrong here, but I buzzed in with "family" on "consanguinity", was prompted, said "clan", and was negged. Was that not a promptable answer?

I'd also like to see the Round 5 "Drosophila" tossup, since I'm curious what the unique clue in the leadin is.
Joelle Smart
Ellensburg High School, 2006–10
University of Washington, 2010–14
Rutgers University, 2015–20??
PACE
HSAPQ biology editor, 2014–2017

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: Falls Church, VA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:10 pm

Speaking to questions I wrote/edited:

"Taking Jesus down from the cross" is literally a definition of what the Deposition means, so that shouldn't have been negged. That said, you're right that the painting isn't always called a Deposition and I forgot that - it's probably better to replace the clue entirely.

The second clue in the Ghosts tossup says "At the start of the play those characters are in, one of these beings is asked for a drink by a student sitting by the wheelchair-bound Jacob." That's a bit confusing and I should reword it to clarify, but it's referring to the milkmaid whom the student speaks with at the beginning of the play.

There should probably be a prompt on "clan" if there's a prompt on "family" as well. I'll fix that.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16
"...should be treated as the non-stakeholding troll he is" -Matt Weiner

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Tue Oct 04, 2016 9:13 pm

Re: Menstrual cycle--

1) Hilariously, I realized process was a much better pronoun immediately after pasting it up thread and made that edit
2) The tossup is on every phase of the menstrual cycle, not just menstruation--I should've caught the folliculogenesis thing and added it to the answer line instead of just _follicular phase_, that's my mistake

And here I'll get to the defense, although I still agree that this tossup needs a lot more work and improvement:
3) I don't believe Graafian actually names any process other than "selection" in any case, menstrual cycle or folliculogenesis or otherwise--in that case, the complaint about "wtf is a Graafian menstrua"l cycle isn't anything I think I can work with--I've made the "process" pronoun swap-out, and I'm open to any more suggestions. Folliculogenesis is a process contained within the menstrual cycle and (again, I agree that this answer line may be too broad, so I may just replace this with another endocrinology question) I'm not convinced that the majority of that complaint isn't solved by just including information that folliculogenesis is acceptable alongside the already existing _follicular phase_ in the answer line. (I do dislike having such a complicated answer line though, so that's another strike against keeping this tossup)
4) You're wrong about the FSH leading to selection (or I would hope so since I pulled that part of the clue out of the answer key to one of my finals two quarters ago). Follicle Stimulating Hormone leads to growth of the follicles, sure, but selection of Graafian follicles is induced by inhibin in the sense that high levels of it reduces levels of FSH until only the follicle with the highest numbers of surface receptors survives, which then becomes the dominant Graafian follicle. That being said, I believe I did make it more clear by describing that (relatively well-elucidated) mechanism, but either I or Wang recommended that it be taken out to prevent transparency issues.

That being said, I get the complaint that this is kind of a long chain of reasoning, so as a relatively new bio writer (I spent most of my time on the warm clean humanities while writing the set), I wasn't sure where to draw the line on generosity. I decided on this current form because the mechanism seemed to me a pretty well-defined process with names and all. I apologize for your neg and confusion because this just seems like how endocrinology works in general, with everything affecting everything in vivo (and it's part of the reason I regretted telling Wang I would write an endo question!).

My phone is almost out of power so I'll respond to the islands tossup later tonight.
Last edited by Jason Cheng on Wed Oct 05, 2016 12:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode
Tidus
Posts: 653
Joined: Sun May 23, 2010 10:03 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode » Tue Oct 04, 2016 10:27 pm

Amizda Calyx wrote: I'd also like to see the Round 5 "Drosophila" tossup, since I'm curious what the unique clue in the leadin is.
Looks like at some point I switched the word discovered for the word found. OOPS
Andrew Wang
Illinois 2016

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Wed Oct 05, 2016 12:37 am

Packet 10 wrote:12. In one stage of this process, high levels of inhibin lead to selection of a single Graafian structure as the “dominant” type. High levels of prolactin production suppresses a hypothalamic hormone responsible for this process. This cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in (*) estrous cycles. During this event, theca and granulosa cells cooperate to form the corpus luteum. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to this event’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
ANSWER: menstrual cycle [accept ovarian or uterine cycle; accept folliculogenesis before “prolactin production”; accept follicular phase or ovulation or early or late luteal phase; accept menstruation or proliferative or secretory phase; prompt on pregnancy or fertilization before “This cycle sees...” in the third sentence] <Bio, JC>
I've rewritten the leadin as per your concerns to make it less hairy; I'm still not sure what to say about the "wtf is Graafian menstruation" complaint since the original iteration and every subsequent iteration (including this one) of this tossup made it clear that it was the structure that was Graafian, not the process being described (because there also isn't a "Graafian folliculogenesis" as far as I can tell), and that the tossup was on the _menstrual_ cycle.

RE: _islands_, I realized the issue wherein most things you can say about islands in ecology are applicable to basically any other isolated ecosystem, and I tried to be careful about that--looks like I wasn't careful enough to include that prompt though, so it's been added. Here is the new tossup:
Packet 4 wrote:11. The likelihood of a species native to these ecosystems to go extinct is termed the “rescue effect,” while a similar tendency to lack fear of natural predators is known as these ecosystems’ “tameness.” A theory originally applied to these ecosystems led to the SLOSS debate over whether single large or several small reserves were superior. Foster’s Rule states that based on the resources of these ecosystems, organisms’ sizes in them (*) tend towards extremes. Adaptive radiation tends to occur in these ecosystems, which are insular. Robert MacArthur and E. O. Wilson developed a “biogeography” for these ecosystems, in which uniquely isolated species, such as species of finches, were studied by Darwin on the Galapagos. For 10 points, name these ecological regions of subcontinental land surrounded by water.
ANSWER: islands [accept archipelagos; prompt on fragmented ecosystems] <Bio, JC>
I actually got the rescue effect clue from some source on island biogeography, which led me to believe that it was originally a phrase coined for that specific purpose. I'm open to any suggestions other than adding the prompt.
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Amizda Calyx
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 250
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Amizda Calyx » Wed Oct 05, 2016 3:10 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:"Taking Jesus down from the cross" is literally a definition of what the Deposition means, so that shouldn't have been negged. That said, you're right that the painting isn't always called a Deposition and I forgot that - it's probably better to replace the clue entirely.
Yeah, I suspected that the main issue with my being negged was the lack of knowledge and experience of the moderator, which ties back to my general complaints about the NYU site. It would be a good idea to add "accept clear descriptions" or something though, since new mods are rarely comfortable making judgment calls outside of the given answerline. I've been negged at least three other times for this exact clue and answerline, partly because I somehow ALWAYS forget the terms "deposition" and "descent" but "entombment" is stubbornly lodged in my memory.
Jason Cheng wrote:Re: Menstrual cycle--
3) I don't believe Graafian actually names any process other than "selection" in any case, menstrual cycle or folliculogenesis or otherwise--in that case, the complaint about "wtf is a Graafian menstrua"l cycle isn't anything I think I can work with--I've made the "process" pronoun swap-out, and I'm open to any more suggestions. Folliculogenesis is a process contained within the menstrual cycle and (again, I agree that this answer line may be too broad, so I may just replace this with another endocrinology question) I'm not convinced that the majority of that complaint isn't solved by just including information that folliculogenesis is acceptable alongside the already existing _follicular phase_ in the answer line. (I do dislike having such a complicated answer line though, so that's another strike against keeping this tossup)
...
That being said, I get the complaint that this is kind of a long chain of reasoning, so as a relatively new bio writer (I spent most of my time on the warm clean humanities while writing the set), I wasn't sure where to draw the line on generosity. I decided on this current form because the mechanism seemed to me a pretty well-defined process with names and all. I apologize for your neg and confusion because this just seems like how endocrinology works in general, with everything affecting everything in vivo (and it's part of the reason I regretted telling Wang I would write an endo question!).
I forgot to look at the actual answerline for the question before posting, so I had thought it was a tossup entirely on "menstruation" (which is what I know several teams got it with), which would be a terrible idea. That said, I do think it's an unwieldy answerline as is for the reasons you've given -- that there are too many possible alternate answers, and it would be difficult to actually cover every single one. It's like that CRR tossup on "protein sorting", or a hypothetical tossup on "cell signaling" -- the huge number of possible answers makes it extremely difficult to pinpoint exactly what is going on and how general an answer to give.
Jason Cheng wrote:4) You're wrong about the FSH leading to selection (or I would hope so since I pulled that part of the clue out of the answer key to one of my finals two quarters ago). Follicle Stimulating Hormone leads to growth of the follicles, sure, but selection of Graafian follicles is induced by inhibin in the sense that high levels of it reduces levels of FSH until only the follicle with the highest numbers of surface receptors survives, which then becomes the dominant Graafian follicle. That being said, I believe I did make it more clear by describing that (relatively well-elucidated) mechanism, but either I or Wang recommended that it be taken out to prevent transparency issues.
I think the confusion stems from which process each of us interpreted from "Graafian [selection]" (by the way, searching for "Graafian selection|Graafian follicular selection" with the quotes returns no results, and "Graafian follicle selection" returns one article and the articles that cite it). I was considering the most critical component in the selection of the antral follicles into a dominant follicle, which in the articles I've read is the secondary spike in FSH ("The secondary rise in plasma FSH is obligatory for, and serves as the basis of, dominant follicle selection... The secondary FSH rise...also occurs concomitantly with decreases in inhibin A..."). Subsequently, the dominant follicles secrete inhibin, which then can decrease FSH -- but they also secrete several other factors (e.g. estradiol (by virtue of CYP19 expressed apparently only in the pre-determined dominant follicle), which has just as big an effect as inhibin) and have higher levels of other receptors/molecules (e.g. LH receptors (important!), GSH, other antioxidants) that also contribute to their protection from atresia. In these articles ("There is compelling evidence from laboratory animal and primate experiments, that a secondary rise in plasma FSH must be attained for a follicle to achieve dominance." -- UCSD School of Medicine prof :wink:), inhibin appears to have a less important or less concrete/consistent role ("The mechanism whereby one small graafian follicle in a cohort is able to concentrate high levels of FSH in its microenvironment remains one of the mysteries in ovary physiology. An important point is that estradiol produced by the dominant follicle inhibits the secondary rise in FSH by a negative feedback mechanism"). On the other hand, this book seems to simplify the whole process in support of your description. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I think what was confusing about the wording in the question was the implication that a) inhibin levels were just autonomously rising, rather than the dominant follicles themselves secreting it; and b) that the "Graafian type" of "this event/process" was referring to the whole process of follicular selection -- from recruitment to near-universal atresia -- not just the reduction to a single follicle from a small pool of follicles.
Joelle Smart
Ellensburg High School, 2006–10
University of Washington, 2010–14
Rutgers University, 2015–20??
PACE
HSAPQ biology editor, 2014–2017

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

User avatar
Amizda Calyx
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 250
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Amizda Calyx » Wed Oct 05, 2016 3:35 pm

Jason Cheng wrote:12. In one stage of this process, high levels of inhibin lead to selection of a single Graafian structure as the “dominant” type. High levels of prolactin production suppresses a hypothalamic hormone responsible for this process. This cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in (*) estrous cycles. During this event, theca and granulosa cells cooperate to form the corpus luteum. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to this event’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
Hmm I didn't even look at the rest of the question apart from the leadin.
  • The second clue is very nonunique -- GnRH is involved in other processes besides the menstrual cycle, including behavior and, through LH/FSH, gonadal steroidogenesis. When you have so many potential answers, the ability to confidently buzz in decreases dramatically.
  • The temperature clue makes the question really transparent/easy in my opinion. Same with LH.
  • Covert vs overt is a lot more obscure than any clues involving prolactin or LH.
  • Theca and granulosa are also more obscure than those things.
  • Switching between "cycle" and "event" is misleading.
Honestly, I'd advocate for replacing this question with a more constrained endo tossup; it's just way too broad to adequately execute, especially at this level.
Joelle Smart
Ellensburg High School, 2006–10
University of Washington, 2010–14
Rutgers University, 2015–20??
PACE
HSAPQ biology editor, 2014–2017

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

Jason Cheng
Rikku
Posts: 364
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:23 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Jason Cheng » Fri Oct 07, 2016 1:31 pm

I agreed with a good amount of your complaints in about the non-leadin parts of the tossup and have edited the tossup to its current form for mirrors tomorrow (this is more of a band-aid, since replacing it is still totally in the books):
Packet 10 wrote:12. In one stage of this process, high levels of inhibin contributes to the selection of a single “dominant” Graafian structure. A stage in this cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in estrous cycles. High levels of prolactin production suppresses GnRH and disrupts this cycle, a lack of which is known as (*) amenorrhea. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to shedding of the endometrium and an event in this cycle’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
ANSWER: menstrual cycle [accept ovarian or uterine cycle; accept folliculogenesis before “prolactin production”; accept follicular phase or ovulation or early or late luteal phase; accept menstruation or proliferative or secretory phase; prompt on pregnancy or fertilization before “This cycle sees...” in the third sentence] <Bio, JC>
And now for the unfun part RE: dominant Graafian follicle selection--
So I think what's happening here is that we're each zeroing in on a different part of the process. If I'm reading it right, the Erickson and Chang articles (these are all UCSD people, which is why it would be _super surprising_ if my professor, who's been basically the only undergrad endocrinology professor here for God knows how many decades, got it wrong) are saying that the second rise in FSH levels are responsible for saving the newly-selected dominant follicle post-selection, since the follicle can't continue to survive and proliferate in low-FSH conditions, while inhibin blocks rises of FSH in general (so it plays a role in multiple steps of the selection process, including the second rise we're discussing here). The reason this second rise is obligatory, then, is because the now-dominant follicle can't resume growth and mitotic activity without it.

Obviously this is a simplified view of things because we're not writing textbooks here, but in my mind the process goes something like this: FSH on multiple follicles -> follicles grow/develop and granulosa cells are induced into secreting inhibin and somewhere along the line follicles become Graafian due to atretic activity -> inhibin aggregates in the environment -> FSH levels drop like crazy -> Graafian follicles stop growing/developing and a lot of crazy receptor shit happens here, but the gist of it is that the Graafian follicle with the most robust receptor complexes "survives" the harsh low-FSH winter -> after nondominant follicles are determined, FSH levels begin to rise again (both inhibin and estradiol drop, but it's been shown that the drop in estradiol is probably the major factor in this second rise) -> dominant follicle begins to grow/develop again and is eventually secreted in ovulation

So in this scheme of things, all these sources (written by the same UCSD authors!) are consistent, but we've been focusing on different steps of the process because endocrinology is all about different steps of feedback processes.

But I don't think any of this is actually a major part of why I'm not convinced the leadin is unusable, and here's why: while we can debate on what we think the most "important" part of this selection process is (and I think it's the drop in FSH from inhibin & estradiol while you think it's the rise in FSH after the drop), it doesn't actually matter, since the sentence doesn't have to contain the most important part of the process to be unique, knowable, and buzzable. The sentence maps into three discrete clues: 1) "high levels of inhibin" 2) "Graafian type" 3) "dominant". A player buzzing at any point in this sentence will probably be buzzing on knowledge that there's a selection of a dominant follicle prior to ovulation, follicles being prepared for ovulation are called Graafian at some point, or that inhibin rises during the menstrual, all of which I think are fine discrete buzz points for someone buzzing on the first line of this EFT tossup on the menstrual cycle. The reason I think inhibin makes for a better clue is that FSH does like a million different tossup-worthy things in endocrinology of humans alone, whereas inhibin has a much more narrowly-constrained set of purposes, and this is the only one I've encountered in my (pretty amateur) studies of endocrinology. Therefore, inhibin is useful as a clue here because it's likely to point directly at my answer line in a player's mind at game speed, even if we disagree over whether or not it's the "most important" part, because the other candidate in our debate for the "most important part" (second rise in FSH) happens to also be unusable as a leadin because it's either transparent or non-unique.

I hope this clears my thought process up, and thanks for all the feedback. It's definitely helped me sort through what parts of a biology tossup might be good or bad, and I promise I'll put it to use in the future if I'm ever forced to write science for quiz bowl again!
Jason Cheng
Arcadia High School 2013
UCSD 2017
PACE
http://www.socalquizbowl.org

User avatar
Doga (Dog Yoga)
Lulu
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Doga (Dog Yoga) » Fri Oct 07, 2016 2:13 pm

Jason Cheng wrote:I agreed with a good amount of your complaints in about the non-leadin parts of the tossup and have edited the tossup to its current form for mirrors tomorrow (this is more of a band-aid, since replacing it is still totally in the books):
Packet 10 wrote:12. In one stage of this process, high levels of inhibin contributes to the selection of a single “dominant” Graafian structure. A stage in this cycle sees a brief spike of basal body temperature by about 0.5 degrees Celsius. This cycle can be overt as opposed to a reabsorptive covert process in estrous cycles. High levels of prolactin production suppresses GnRH and disrupts this cycle, a lack of which is known as (*) amenorrhea. One stage of this cycle is triggered by an LH surge. Low levels of progesterone in the late luteal phase of this cycle cause an increase in prostaglandins, leading to shedding of the endometrium and an event in this cycle’s trademark cramps and bleeding. For 10 points, name this female reproductive cycle that releases eggs for fertilization in secretory and ovulatory phases.
ANSWER: menstrual cycle [accept ovarian or uterine cycle; accept folliculogenesis before “prolactin production”; accept follicular phase or ovulation or early or late luteal phase; accept menstruation or proliferative or secretory phase; prompt on pregnancy or fertilization before “This cycle sees...” in the third sentence] <Bio, JC>
Estrous cycle probably shouldn't be in power, and imo the .5 degrees C clue seems kind of general

other clues you could probably use early are corona radiata and antimullerian hormone

also, for the vectors tossup, someone on the other team buzzed on the first line and was negged for saying vector spaces or vector fields or something, the answerline should probably be tweaked to include those
Last edited by Doga (Dog Yoga) on Sat Oct 08, 2016 9:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
Rohith Nagari
Brown '17

User avatar
Amizda Calyx
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 250
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Amizda Calyx » Sat Oct 08, 2016 2:24 am

I mean, my main complaint with the leadin was the confusing wording in the original formulation; I think through my own reading and your response we've cleared up what each of our interpretations of the inhibin clue was. Also, I want to emphasize that my initial stance was based on thinking the tossup was on just menstruation, for which those clues wouldn't be appropriate.
The primary issue I have now is with the other clues -- like Rohith said, estrous should definitely not be in power. My argument about covert and overt was that those particular words are more obscure than the other topics, but when you throw "estrous" in there it brings it back down to easy. I was just suggesting that if there was a way of referencing those terms without estrous it might be a more solid hard clue. At the moment, the difficulty is pretty much a very transparent plateau from the first mention of "cycle" (but not just because you drop that word), and it still has the breadth of the answerline to worry about. I really think you'd have a better time writing a reproductive endocrinology tossup on a more constrained subject.
I hope this hasn't disillusioned you from writing bio questions, though. I'm not great at it, but there are a lot of things I've learned from critiques of my questions (many of them by Auroni) that have helped me identify problems early on.
Joelle Smart
Ellensburg High School, 2006–10
University of Washington, 2010–14
Rutgers University, 2015–20??
PACE
HSAPQ biology editor, 2014–2017

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

User avatar
Cherrybell Miramonte
Lulu
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2015 10:43 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Cherrybell Miramonte » Sun Oct 09, 2016 5:54 pm

Could I see the tossup on tangrams? This was not powered by anyone at any site, and I'd be very surprised if anyone buzzed before the clue which listed all the shapes; I certainly remember having no idea what was happening until then. I (and probably most people playing this question) have never heard of tangrams outside of being a fun puzzle, and I don't remember the tossup doing a good job conveying their mathematical importance.
Sam Rombro
Arizona '20
Maryland '18
Writer, NAQT

RexSueciae
Rikku
Posts: 318
Joined: Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:24 am

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by RexSueciae » Sun Oct 09, 2016 6:20 pm

I don't see a "general discussion" thread so let me just say at the start that this question set met or exceeded every expectation of mine and as a result I had great fun. I would like to personally thank the writers who wrote questions on cool things.

Specifically, I was very happy seeing the following answerlines tossed up: Excalibur, Greek in poetry, Roman amphitheatres, drowning in myth, Alexandria in religious history, Pelops, England in opera, Beowulf the character, Baltic Sea, and 1940s in film. I was fond of the following bonuses: education / Montessori / Ayers, Powhatan / Pocahontas / Henricus, cuckoo / verse / Arnold, Pandora / bones of their mother / Aztecs, Marius / citizens / testudo, and that one glorious bonus that referenced my favorite poem by Philip Larkin.

I had no idea that the snails used to make Tyrian purple had an actual name, although I think I knew they did on an abstract level.

I thought it odd that the tossup on (British) police let power go until at least Bow Street Runners, and I witnessed a buzzer race on the lead-in with Ms. Clinton's Beijing speech on women's rights, though given EFT's publicly stated difficulty I completely understand the editorial choice in both instances. (On a side note, I thought that the answerlines did a good job overall in holding to an appropriate old-school regular-minus feel.)

I heard from a friend that the science was super real and maybe skewed sliiightly harder compared to the other stuff, but given that I am manifestly incompetent on the subject I have no comment (except that apparently nobody at the Duke site managed to power a single physics tossup).

What the hell was the tossup on tangrams? I didn't personally have a problem with it, I guess, but was it really tossed up as an Other Science / Math question? From what I remember of the clues (I second the request to see it again) it would've been much better served as some other category, given that I haven't actually seen math people talking about them. Also, while I totally get the push for fresh answerlines (and especially gettable answerlines for newer teams) I am not particularly fond of that moment sitting at a buzzer when I think, "wait, this can't be a tossup on tangrams, nobody would ever write about--" and so forth.
Vasa Clarke

Maggie Walker '14
Virginia '18
William and Mary '21

User avatar
Ike
Yuna
Posts: 878
Joined: Sat Jul 26, 2008 5:01 pm
Contact:

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Ike » Sun Oct 09, 2016 8:13 pm

15. In Sam Lloyd’s treatise about the “eighth book” of these objects, he presents a paradox involving two monks of similar size made of these objects, one of which has a leg, the other of which does not. The Western counterpart to these objects are called the stomachion, which are used to complete the loculus of Archimedes. A theorem proved by Fu Traing Wang and Chuan-Chin Hsiung showed that there are only thirteen ways to generate (*) convex shapes using these objects. The simplest such shape formed by these objects is a giant square, half of which is comprised by its two largest pieces. Two large triangles, one medium triangle, two small triangles, a square, and a trapezoid, comprise, for 10 points, what set of seven shapes developed by the Song Dynasty and often used in recreational mathematics?
I wrote this, and I'll defend the idea of this question and its execution. I counted this as other science / mathematics - I agree that this question is "hokey," but it certainly is a legitimate idea for a question. If all the mathematics were filled with questions like this then you should be pretty mad, but as far as I can tell, this is the only such tossup in the other science, and probably the science as a whole.

As for powering this tossup - I freely admit that you probably have to read Martin Gardner, a history of mathematics, or a recreational mathematics book. That may come out to a 0 power rate among the best teams, and be one of those "anomalous" power tossups* - and that's OK. The idea that a 0 power rate (or really any deviation from a normal distribution of powers) signifies a tossup is somehow poorly done, a bad idea, or somehow otherwise indicative of a problem is wrong. At the very least, quizbowl would be a terrible game if you as a player could think "man it can't be a tossup on X since the power rate would be so low!"

Could the power mark have been moved down? Yeah, why not. Is this unpowerable? I personally would have powered this before I looked up the leadin clue, so I honestly believed there is a decent chance it was answerable for 15. Do I expect everyone to like this tossup? Heck no - but I do think that people should understand why it's OK and even good to have a sprinkling of these types of questions throughout a set.

Anyway, you better hope you don't get me as your Secret Mount Vinokurov partner this year if you were at the Maryland site, you know what you're getting.

Ike

* This is a term that Seth Teitler and I once used in a conversation. While evaluating a Nationals tossup on blue elves in other science, Seth called this an "anomalous power" tossup since the best teams in the country would probably not power it, but the people who powered it--if any--would be some random meteorology specialist from a team you don't know that well. This stands in contrast to what is presumably a "normal" power tossup--like a TU on earthquakes or a novel by Charles Dickens, where you expect many of the best buzzes to come from the top teams. He and I concluded that having some amount of these anomalous power tossups in a set is desirable for many reasons, but you should avoid filling your entire set with them.
Ike
UIUC 13

User avatar
Irreligion in Bangladesh
Auron
Posts: 2058
Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2004 1:18 am
Location: Winnebago, IL

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:22 am

I didn't hear the tangram tossup in the Skype mirror; had I been playing it, I'd have had no clue within power, and might not even have been convinced it was a math tossup within power. (I've had enough physics tossups swerve from "this sounds like math" to "not math that I've done" that just hearing "theorem" isn't enough to convince me I should know what's going on in the early clues.) At the end of the tossup, after it's been buzzed and the bonus is going, I'd feel like that was the "other academic" category satisfied; if I were category tracking, I'd be angry at the end that that tossup spent a math slot, which are too rare for my liking. I'd also be angry, after the fact, that that tossup was incredibly hard to power; one of the few categories I'm capable of powering was "wasted," so to speak. It's not anger about not powering it; I 10 math tossups all the time. It's anger about seeing just how hard it would have been for anyone to power, and that there wasn't a legitimate power mark that could have fixed that in the tossup as-written.

I think these gripes are pretty minor; any given tournament will have a handful of these things (I won't even call this one a clunker), and they're generally worth more as a springboard for a philosophical discussion thread than as complaints in the feedback thread. I think this particular tossup becomes uncomplainable if (A1: it's other academic, rather than math OR A2: it gets that extra clue) and B: the tournament doesn't have powers. The B: point is something I'm dealing with with NHBB writing; there are some tossups that just can't be used for Bowl powermarked questions because I'm using clues unsuited for extra points. Not every tossup is suited for powermarking; I feel like the fair way to deal with that is "save the tossup for a non-powermarked set" rather than spend it now in a sub-optimal situation.

These gripes aside, the tossup is interesting and well-ordered; I'd probably think it perfect with another clue between 13 convex shapes and the giant square, adjusting the power mark down into that new clue. As someone who tried to shoehorn recreational math into my classroom for three years, I loved the answer line.
Brad Fischer
Head Editor, IHSA State Series

Winnebago HS ('06)
Northern Illinois University ('10)
Assistant Coach, IMSA (2010-12)
Coach, Keith Country Day School (2012-16)

User avatar
Irreligion in Bangladesh
Auron
Posts: 2058
Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2004 1:18 am
Location: Winnebago, IL

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:35 am

(I'm specifically making this post separate in case the anomalous power tossup idea gets discussed more, for ease of thread splitting.)

"Anomalous power tossups" is a great term that should get discussed more widely, and something worth having in a set, I'll agree. The idea of a "normal power tossup" implies that there are things worth 15, and only those things are worth 15, but so-called "anomalous" power clues are the reason we write questions and play quizbowl in the first place! Either those anomalous clues are important to not-common-to-quizbowl fields (and therefore deserve more regular play in sub-categories), or those clues are famous in certain communities but not widely known among "the quizbowl community" yet (and therefore probably make good lead-ins). This all assumes that the clue in question was a good clue - that is obviously a high bar to clear - but in general, the fear that a tossup's early clues aren't buzzable by quizbowlers but rather favor specialists in things that quizbowl hasn't broadly covered yet is a fear that should be cast aside by the experienced writer.

I do think the best place for such clues is in a set that doesn't use powermarks or in a powermarked set's bonuses -- the only problem I see with such a tossup is that it makes the powermark balancing wrong -- but I personally enjoy the luxury of writing sets that use powermarked tossups and non-powermarked tossups in different rounds (NHBB Bowl vs. Bee), so I can slot questions into "optimal" locations easier than the editor of a single housewrite can.
Brad Fischer
Head Editor, IHSA State Series

Winnebago HS ('06)
Northern Illinois University ('10)
Assistant Coach, IMSA (2010-12)
Coach, Keith Country Day School (2012-16)

Considered Harmful
Lulu
Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2014 5:14 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Considered Harmful » Mon Oct 17, 2016 9:27 pm

Can I see the boolean expressions tossup?
Nicholas Sunderland
Lisgar CI '15
Waterloo '20

rajk
Lulu
Posts: 23
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:55 pm
Location: California
Contact:

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by rajk » Thu Oct 20, 2016 3:58 pm

Around occasionally wrote:Can I see the boolean expressions tossup?
14. A function for simplifying these structures in double exponential time first finds all of its prime implicants and neglects “don’t care” terms. The Quine–McCluskey algorithm simplifies these expressions, which can also be simplified through a refinement of a Veitch diagram called a Karnaugh map. The Cook–Levin theorem showed that the problem asking if these functions could be (*) “satisfied” was NP-complete. These functions are often written in conjunctive normal form or disjunctive normal form and often have their possible evaluations displayed using a truth table. These functions give their name to a data type in programming languages that evaluates to either “0” or “1.” For 10 points, name these logical expressions named for a British mathematician.
ANSWER: Boolean functions [or Boolean expressions; or Booleans] <OSci, RH>

I negged this with circuits at Karnaugh map. Unsure if it should've been prompted or not. My textbook (Arora&Barak) says "When students study digital logic design they learn how to do “circuit minimization” using Karnaugh maps...", but this is speaking informally, and Karnaugh maps do most directly apply to boolean expressions.

----

I also was curious about the Penrose clue on the Turing machines tossup.

13. In the Malament–Hogarth spacetime, one of these objects works for all eternity, but through relativity, an observer can see its results at any point. Roger Penrose discussed a two-dimensional variant of these objects that accepts the same set of all languages as their one-dimensional variants. Tibor Radó proposed a problem of finding which of these objects with some input takes the maximum number of (*) steps in the busy beaver problem. The fact that it is impossible to devise an algorithm to see if one of these constructs will finish running on an arbitrary input is called the halting problem. These objects have heads that are capable of reading and writing symbols on an infinite tape. For 10 points, name these abstract computational devices named for a British computer scientist.
ANSWER: Turing machines <OSci, RH>

I tried looking it up but I couldn't find anything about Penrose and 2D Turing machines.
Source is at https://books.google.com/books?id=0mVEB ... ng&f=false.
Bala
UC Berkeley, 2018

Inifinite Jest
Lulu
Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:48 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Inifinite Jest » Fri Oct 21, 2016 2:02 pm

rajk wrote:14. A function for simplifying these structures in double exponential time first finds all of its prime implicants and neglects “don’t care” terms. The Quine–McCluskey algorithm simplifies these expressions, which can also be simplified through a refinement of a Veitch diagram called a Karnaugh map. The Cook–Levin theorem showed that the problem asking if these functions could be (*) “satisfied” was NP-complete. These functions are often written in conjunctive normal form or disjunctive normal form and often have their possible evaluations displayed using a truth table. These functions give their name to a data type in programming languages that evaluates to either “0” or “1.” For 10 points, name these logical expressions named for a British mathematician.
ANSWER: Boolean functions [or Boolean expressions; or Booleans] <OSci, RH>
I buzzed in at some point around Quine-McCluskey and said "logical connectives". I'm kind of out my depth here but, as far as I can tell, Boolean operators are equivalent to logical connectives.
Caleb
Oklahoma '18 Norman North '15

User avatar
Silverman
Lulu
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:58 pm
Location: Pittsburgh

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Silverman » Fri Oct 21, 2016 8:10 pm

Inifinite Jest wrote:Boolean operators are equivalent to logical connectives
Right, but you're not simplifying the connectives themselves, you're simplifying the expression as a whole. That's like saying "conjunctions" when the question wants "sentences" (in a natural language sense).
Steven Silverman
Unionville High School '13
Carnegie Mellon University '17

Inifinite Jest
Lulu
Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:48 pm

Re: Specific Question Discussion

Post by Inifinite Jest » Fri Oct 21, 2016 11:08 pm

Silverman wrote:
Inifinite Jest wrote:Boolean operators are equivalent to logical connectives
Right, but you're not simplifying the connectives themselves, you're simplifying the expression as a whole. That's like saying "conjunctions" when the question wants "sentences" (in a natural language sense).
Okay, that makes sense.
Caleb
Oklahoma '18 Norman North '15

Locked