SCT commentary

This is the holding pen for the best threads containing quiz bowl talk.

Postby mps4a_mps4a » Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:26 am

i'd like a hole to be dug for the 2003 sectionals, and them left in there.

I don't have either set in front of me now, but I feel like this set was still better than last year's, which I also liked. Again this is subjective and based on year-old memories, but I feel like this set had more well-built questions, especially lit (a lot of the ones Matt just cited as good were lit).
mps4a_mps4a
Wakka
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 12:42 am
Location: University of Virginia

Postby Captain Sinico » Sat Feb 12, 2005 2:46 pm

[quote="Matt Weiner"]More blatant punishment is the “Amnerisâ€
User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
 
Posts: 2834
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Sat Feb 12, 2005 3:52 pm

[quote="Matt Weiner"]
“Celtic languagesâ€
Bruce
Harvard '10 / UChicago '07 / Roycemore School '04
ACF Member emeritus
My guide to using Wikipedia as a question source
User avatar
Skepticism and Animal Feed
Auron
 
Posts: 3135
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 11:47 pm
Location: Arlington, VA

Postby Matt Weiner » Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:12 pm

Bruce wrote:The tossup began with a clue saying these languages are broken into groups called p and q. Every language known as "Gaelic" is a q-celtic language. Accepting Gaelic for Celtic after that clue is like accepting James K. Polk for "this officer can veto legislation passed by Congress".


I do believe you're right about that. Thanks for clearing things up.
User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
 
Posts: 8413
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Postby Matt Weiner » Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:17 pm

ImmaculateDeception wrote:Actually, I have to disagree with you on this one and I liked this question. The leadin to this question made it immediately clear who it was (and even moreso that it wasn't Aida herself) if you know anything much about Aida. While you could say this is slightly harder than the mean for the set, it was a well written question and I contend that Amneris should be askable at this level, if difficult. If you understand only that the question is on a "woman from Aida" and buzz with Aida, you get what you get; it's just the same as taking an educated guess on any other question.


This, I can't agree with. It creates a situation where someone who knows nothing about Aida is better off than someone who knows that Ramfis is a character in Aida. "You would have gotten it if you had better knowledge of Aida" is not an acceptable justification for misleading those with imperfect but non-trivial knowledge. The fact that I was only guessing and the information in the tossup was factually accurate means I don't have grounds to protest it at the tournament. It doesn't mean it's a good question.
User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
 
Posts: 8413
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Postby Captain Sinico » Sat Feb 12, 2005 7:24 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:"You would have gotten it if you had better knowledge of Aida" is not an acceptable justification for misleading those with imperfect but non-trivial knowledge. The fact that I was only guessing and the information in the tossup was factually accurate means I don't have grounds to protest it at the tournament. It doesn't mean it's a good question.


Nonsense, dude. The question is in exactly no ways misleading. Also, you would find entirely unacceptable the only logical conclusion of this argument, which must be that only the best-known example of something or member of some set is askable (or, at least, nothing else is askable without explicitly disqualifying that paragon first.) Obviously, this gives rise to any number of absurdities and must be considered repugnant.
Moreover, unless I am mistaken (I've leant my copy of the questions to someone else,) the lead-in discusses the banishment that Amneris inflicts on Aida, so even the most cursory knowledge of the plot of Aida necessarily disqualifies Aida herself, of whom this act would be entirely uncharacteristic anyway. I fail to see how buzzing with Aida from knowing the answer to be "a female character from Aida" is any better than buzzing with, say, Milton from knowledge that the answer is an "English poet." In both cases, you have elected to take a risk on the basis of knowledge that you know does not entail a single answer. Clearly, you would not even seek to defend a complaint about this later situation.
Also, the argument that this clue leaves someone with inferior knowledge about Aida better-off is suspect at best. After all, had you not buzzed but rather waited until you were sure of the answer (or sure that you didn't know it,) you would have had the advantage all along of knowing that the work in discussion is Aida, knowledge which your opponent lacks by hypothesis. I would argue that this in itself comprises the major advantage of drastically narrowing your set of potential answers. Moreover, I find it dubious that any team not recognizing the work in question to be Aida from Ramfis is going to know Amneris to begin with.

MaS
User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
 
Posts: 2834
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Postby Matt Weiner » Sat Feb 12, 2005 7:32 pm

For reference, this is the question:

[quote]Her big scene is in act IV where she begs her lover to allow her to save him from charges of treason, asking only that he give up his foreign love. He refuses and is sentenced to be (*) buried alive, causing her to revile Ramphis' priests as an “impious lotâ€
User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
 
Posts: 8413
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Postby Scipio » Sun Feb 13, 2005 12:03 am

The problem with a tossup on Amneris is not that its a tossup on Amneris, though one might point out with some justification that it is a little bit more difficult than some of the other questions in the SCT. Furthermore, I don't think that its misleading, but in seeing the tossup in text I am struck by how vague it is, especially before the power mark, at which exactly none of the clues have pointed out that the tossup is looking for a heroine from an opera. How hard would it have been for the first line of that tossup to have been rewritten to "Her big moment is in Act IV, when she begs her lover to allow her to save him from charges of treason and asks only that he give up his foreign love in her part of the duet 'Gia sacerdo ..."". That way, anyone who really knows the opera will recognise that Amneris is sought here, since it is only she who sings in that duet. In fact, none of the arias she sings is named in the tossup, which I had thought was becoming standard operating procedure now.
Seth Lyons Kendall
University of Memphis, 1993-1997
University of Kentucky, 1997-1999, 2000-2008
User avatar
Scipio
Wakka
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 4:12 pm

Postby grapesmoker » Mon Feb 14, 2005 9:35 pm

As I've said before, I think this year's SCT was far better than last year's or that of the year's before last. Overall, there was less "cuteness" and fewer academic subjects transformed into non-academic tossups.

I agree with a couple of Matt's points, especially those regarding flag bonuses. I can't think of any reasonable justification for these kinds of questions. Who cares what the flag of some random country looks like? It's reasonable to ask one to recognize the flags of a number of large, important countries, but beyond that, these questions seem utterly pointless. Element tossups, unless exceptionally well-written, should also be avoided, but there wasn't too much in this SCT to complain about.

I don't know if I really saw more geography this year than is normal for NAQT question sets. If anyone has some time to spend on this, it could be instructive to go through the question set and pick out the geography questions. Kudos to zotlbusy (whose identity I do not know) for doing this for previous question sets. Perhaps I will do this sometime next week.

There were some questions whose form and content I though could have used some revision. For example, the question on George III started out with an anecdote about how regular he was in his bedtime. I don't believe the word "monarch" or "king" appeared in this first clue, and of course I immediately negged with "Kant." The Mingus question was confusing too, given that the double-bass clue appeared early. It's always a bad thing when this happens because it causes one to think, "It can't be that easy, can it?" and results in hesitation at crucial moments. Several other quesitons suffered from this flaw as well.

I think style is one aspect of question writing that is frequently underappreciated. Even if the clues are pyramidally arranged, it is still quite possible to confuse players with sentence structure, excessive pronouns, and the like. This is especially relevant in a format like NAQT's where the fact that the rounds are timed puts pressure on the moderators to read faster, thus sometimes making them hard to understand. This is what happened to me on the "Amneris" question: I heard "she... blah blah... lover... buried alive..." at which point I dutifully negged with "Aida" only for my brain to catch up to my mouth a split second later when all the information was finally processed. I don't know if other people had this problem, but I do think it's something that's worth paying attention to.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance
User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
 
Posts: 6359
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Postby Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Mon Feb 14, 2005 11:20 pm

It may be worth noting that our team also negged with Aida, and we had two classical music specialists.

I think I agree with the general consensus, which seems to be "good set overall, but why the hell is every fourth question geography?" There was probably as much Canadian geography in this set as there was philosophy (which NAQt always seems to be short on.)[/i]
Chris White
Bloomfield HS (New Jersey) '01, Swarthmore College '05, University of Pennsylvania '10. Still writes questions occasionally.
User avatar
Theory Of The Leisure Flask
Yuna
 
Posts: 843
Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2003 11:04 am
Location: Brooklyn

Postby bsmith » Mon Feb 14, 2005 11:32 pm

benjaminthedonkey wrote:There was probably as much Canadian geography in this set as there was philosophy[/i]


I think the Canadian geography is just an easy source of Canadiana for NAQT to keep teams north of the border happy (notice about 2 questions on Vancouver each year?). However, we would be much better catered with Canadian history, Canadian lit, art, pop culture, etc.- heck, even NAQT's hockey questions aren't even Canadian!
User avatar
bsmith
Tidus
 
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Dec 09, 2004 10:33 am
Location: Ottawa, ON

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Tue Feb 15, 2005 12:12 am

I personally would like to see an end to the bonus of the format "Given a Canadian University, name the province in which is it located".

I mean, talk about a total giveaway to Canadian teams. Since they are college students, I bet a good many of them got intimately familiar with Canadian universities during the application stage. With geography, well, there are people that go to college in the United States and don' have a commanding knowledge of our geography; I assume Canada is much the same.
Bruce
Harvard '10 / UChicago '07 / Roycemore School '04
ACF Member emeritus
My guide to using Wikipedia as a question source
User avatar
Skepticism and Animal Feed
Auron
 
Posts: 3135
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 11:47 pm
Location: Arlington, VA

Postby No Sollositing On Premise » Tue Feb 15, 2005 12:57 am

Quick question: If Virginia nabs a D2 bid but not the D1 bid (1st alternate D2, 4th alternate D1), can we bring D2-eligible players that played D1 at sectionals to the D2 team?
Mike Sollosi, University of Virginia
User avatar
No Sollositing On Premise
Yuna
 
Posts: 901
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2003 6:47 pm
Location: Charlottesville, VA

Postby MLafer » Tue Feb 15, 2005 1:02 am

Quick question: If Virginia nabs a D2 bid but not the D1 bid (1st alternate D2, 4th alternate D1), can we bring D2-eligible players that played D1 at sectionals to the D2 team?


NAQT rules:


Students qualify to play in Division II if they meet the following requirements:

1. They do not possess a degree at the Bachelor's level or higher from any post-secondary educational institution,
2. They have not completed their fourth distinct academic year of competition in NAQT collegiate events,
3. Prior to the current competition year, they have never played on a Sectionals team that qualified for the Intercollegiate Championship Tournament nor played at the Intercollegiate Championship Tournament at either the Division II or Division I levels.
4. They have played on a Division I team at no more than one previous NAQT Sectional.

So, as long as the Division I team doesn't get an invite, and this person hasn't played SCT before this year, it seems legal.
Last edited by MLafer on Tue Feb 15, 2005 1:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
MLafer
Tidus
 
Posts: 509
Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2003 7:00 pm

Postby solonqb » Tue Feb 15, 2005 1:02 am

At the poster's request this message has been deleted and replaced with a panel from crazy Japanese comic book Anpanman.

Image
Noah Rahman
Welcome to Simbabwe, where the property is already owned and the houses built and you compete to burn and dispossess them. Compete with Robert Mugabe, Canaan Banana, Cecil Rhodes and Sir Godfrey Huggins to earn a place on the all-time EU travel ban list!
User avatar
solonqb
Tidus
 
Posts: 634
Joined: Mon Jun 16, 2003 11:00 am
Location: Pasadena, CA

Postby Matt Weiner » Tue Feb 15, 2005 1:06 am

Note "prior to the current competition year." Nothing that happens to your D1 team affects its members' eligibilty for this year's ICT.
User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
 
Posts: 8413
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Postby Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Tue Feb 15, 2005 9:45 am

laszlow wrote:Quick question: If Virginia nabs a D2 bid but not the D1 bid (1st alternate D2, 4th alternate D1), can we bring D2-eligible players that played D1 at sectionals to the D2 team?


As MLafer siad, it would be fine. I should note, however, that if previous years are any indication, you may actually have a better chance of qualifying in Div. I. Last year, there were (quick check of NAQT's archives) 14 Div I declines and 3 Div 2 declines.
Chris White
Bloomfield HS (New Jersey) '01, Swarthmore College '05, University of Pennsylvania '10. Still writes questions occasionally.
User avatar
Theory Of The Leisure Flask
Yuna
 
Posts: 843
Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2003 11:04 am
Location: Brooklyn

Postby Rothlover » Tue Feb 15, 2005 6:38 pm

For those who want to see NE stats, I finally got ahold of the fixed files (the few minor things that remain were corrected by NAQT in their final analysis) and the stats can be reached at:

http://www.danpassner.com/NAQT%20Round% ... dings.html

http://www.danpassner.com/playoffs_standings.html
Rothlover
Yuna
 
Posts: 816
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 8:41 pm

Previous

Return to Best of the Best

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest