Search found 254 matches

by touchpack
Wed Apr 26, 2017 2:26 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Difficulty Consistency in Finals Packets
Replies: 19
Views: 7942

Re: Difficulty Consistency in Finals Packets

I think Evan is correct with his assessment on the packet's difficulty--I'd also add that Sam's answer of "erythrogenesis" was correct and should have been accepted (not sure why Maryland didn't protest, but thankfully it didn't matter!), making the count of dead tossups in that game even smaller. A...
by touchpack
Mon Apr 17, 2017 8:45 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: The Barbarism of Monetization
Replies: 128
Views: 42786

Re: The Barbarism of Monetization

if any1 haz ict packets pls send 2 cutieteen94@hotmail.com More seriously, I'm pretty sure NAQT's writer contracts give them exclusive rights to the questions. I don't think there's any moral content to NAQT's intellectual property rights over its questions that makes it okay to privatize their set...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:30 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 Division II ICT: specific question discussion
Replies: 22
Views: 5097

Re: 2017 Division II ICT: specific question discussion

Is there a reason why in the Div II version of the tossup on m.a.a.d., the word acronym is out of power but in the div I version acronym is still in power? I think acronym should be in power for both. In the div II version, there is almost no initial indication what the tossup is looking for, since...
by touchpack
Sun Feb 26, 2017 12:32 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 (This) Tournament is a Crime General Discussion
Replies: 53
Views: 9005

Re: 2017 (This) Tournament is a Crime General Discussion

I will make a more detailed post later, but as a science (and especially chemistry) player this was the most fun I've had at a tournament in at LEAST the last year and a half. Big thank you to the editors for putting this together!
by touchpack
Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:00 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 ICT bids
Replies: 157
Views: 41334

Re: 2017 ICT bids

Putting aside the arguments about morals/ethics for a second.... Publicly shaming a team, especially a team that isn't intimately connected with the online qb comunnity like WKU, for "poor stats," is bullying. It's this type of insidery bullshit that makes HSQB seem so intimidating and scary to outs...
by touchpack
Tue Feb 14, 2017 1:11 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 ICT bids
Replies: 157
Views: 41334

Re: 2017 ICT bids

Here are some stats from recent ICTs:

2016: The top 25 teams (by D-value) all qualified for ICT
2015: top 27
2014: top 19
2013: top 23
2012: top 25

Average: 23.8

This year: top 12


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by touchpack
Tue Feb 14, 2017 12:49 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 ICT bids
Replies: 157
Views: 41334

Re: 2017 ICT bids

It's definitely clear that NAQT is giving out WAY too many bids (for UG, hosting, guest editing, etc.) Only FOUR teams (out of 32) qualified on the strength of their D-value. The team with the 13th best D-value (Duke) got bubbled!
by touchpack
Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:53 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: SCT, autobids, and ICT size discussion
Replies: 131
Views: 44441

Re: SCT, autobids, and ICT size discussion

I would hate to see newer players discouraged by better teams gaming the system. I am firmly of the opinion that it's very rare for players, and certainly rare for whole teams/programs, to give up on quiz bowl due to beat-downs from better teams. It often seems like it's good players/teams who make...
by touchpack
Tue Feb 07, 2017 12:34 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: SCT, autobids, and ICT size discussion
Replies: 131
Views: 44441

Re: SCT, autobids, and ICT size discussion

Insofar as the opinions of an undergraduate president of a 12-person club in a podunk circuit matter, here are mine. To answer Vasa's (likely rhetorical) question, in my opinions SCT is first and foremost the qualifier for ICT. It's a fun tournament, it's nice to have a that-difficulty tournament i...
by touchpack
Mon Feb 06, 2017 8:17 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: SCT, autobids, and ICT size discussion
Replies: 131
Views: 44441

Re: Rocky Mountain Sectionals (Boulder, CO; February 4, 2017

I tend to agree here, and am interested to learn if NAQT has considered the proposition from a couple years ago of expanding DI to 36 teams (which would have many benefits, including allowing more teams pushed to the bubble by the D-value system into the field and expanding the playoff bracket size...
by touchpack
Fri Feb 03, 2017 2:08 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: NAQT rules revisions 2017
Replies: 44
Views: 18469

Re: NAQT rules revisions 2017

So this isn't actually about the SCT questions, but it involves SCT question content, so I'm posting it here. If a moderator believes that this discussion merits a new thread, feel free to split it off. Twice in our games at the Chicago mirror, a moderator made a mistake regarding acceptable answer...
by touchpack
Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:41 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2017 WAO: Science Feedback Thread
Replies: 7
Views: 1444

Re: Science Feedback Thread

This set was really, really good considering the circumstances surrounding its creation. I'm very impressed that James and Jonathan were able to put together a solid-quality set despite having no editing experience at this level and having limited knowledge of some of the subject matter. My only ove...
by touchpack
Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:21 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Continuing to rethink the distribution
Replies: 54
Views: 17599

Re: Continuing to rethink the distribution

The last time someone proposed a mandatory science history distribution (0.5/0.5, as part of science), people wrote a bunch of shitty and unenjoyable questions. I do think there is a place for SOME science history-type stuff in science questions when the lessons learned are relevant to modern scienc...
by touchpack
Wed Dec 07, 2016 3:18 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata
Replies: 71
Views: 8625

Re: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata

Chicago A converted the Trilemma bonus part without too much difficulty.
by touchpack
Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:33 pm
Forum: Theory
Topic: On Exactitude in Science Writing
Replies: 45
Views: 19973

Re: On Exactitude in Science Writing

I fully agree with Ike that the subtext of this thread makes writing science seem impossible and intimidating and is discouraging to new writers. These types of nitpicks tend to range from "minor" to "extremely minor" in terms of how much they actually affect gameplay, while being able to write ques...
by touchpack
Mon Nov 14, 2016 2:48 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata
Replies: 71
Views: 8625

Re: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata

George Corfield wrote:The first line of the joints tossup contains the word "periarticular" which only requires you to know that articular is the adjective which refers to joints, which isn't especially difficult.
Thanks, I replaced it with a clue about HLA-B27.
by touchpack
Sun Nov 13, 2016 6:46 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata
Replies: 71
Views: 8625

Re: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata

stuff about the biodiversity question One measure of this property is denoted H because its formula is the same as that of the H-function from thermodynamics; that measure is the Shannon index. Ooooof, this one's on me; that's an embarrassing oversight. I added "it has nothing to do with informatio...
by touchpack
Sun Nov 13, 2016 6:25 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin General Discussion
Replies: 30
Views: 4477

Re: 2016 Terrapin General Discussion

Oh yeah, the set was pretty good in general, I should add. Other minor complaint about the subdistro: there seemed to be a lot of molecular/quantum chem + quantum phys + astronomy (not even cosmology), and not as much organic chem or engineering. Like, I think there were tossups on Schrodinger, MOs...
by touchpack
Sun Nov 13, 2016 6:03 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata
Replies: 71
Views: 8625

Re: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata

stuff about the biodiversity question One measure of this property is denoted H because its formula is the same as that of the H-function from thermodynamics; that measure is the Shannon index. Ooooof, this one's on me; that's an embarrassing oversight. I added "it has nothing to do with informatio...
by touchpack
Sun Nov 13, 2016 5:54 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata
Replies: 71
Views: 8625

Re: 2016 Terrapin Specific Question Discussion and Errata

I profusely apologize about the state of the computer science in the set. Unfortunately I know very, very little about computer science and did not delegate effectively, so stuff got pushed to last-minute and most of it was written the night before and/or completely unedited. I will make sure ALL of...
by touchpack
Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:20 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 ACF Fall general discussion
Replies: 49
Views: 18657

Re: 2016 ACF Fall general discussion

I actually thought the bonus part on Babinet's principle was fine--I learned about it in freshman-level optics lab. I realize my post (and many of these other posts) come off as rather aggressive towards the individual writer/editor of the questions, but that isn't my intention. I think the idea of ...
by touchpack
Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:08 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 ACF Fall general discussion
Replies: 49
Views: 18657

Re: 2016 ACF Fall general discussion

Science Guy reporting in here: As other people have said, there were some questions that were really inappropriately hard across all of the sciences in the set, which I absolutely agree with. I'm going to specifically focus on the physics, which was really bad. Too Hard stuff: In the packets we read...
by touchpack
Tue Sep 20, 2016 7:35 pm
Forum: Quizbowl History Forum
Topic: Greatest Upsets in Quizbowl History
Replies: 58
Views: 36484

Re: Greatest Upsets in Quizbowl History

This is probably more general than what you're thinking of, but I thought about how upsets are made possible. I guess I'll say there's a few things that typically happen: 1. The other team makes mistakes. Typically, they will do things like "neg in their own categories," or be very aggressive, perh...
by touchpack
Mon Aug 01, 2016 1:03 am
Forum: High school area archives
Topic: Would You Recommend Working for NHBB?
Replies: 75
Views: 41357

Re: Would You Recommend Working for NHBB?

He asked if I could get about 5 others in my area, train them on the format and drive them to DC. I have the experience of being one of these people "in the area" for Bunnie, who drove me to DC to help as a volunteer for Nationals in 2015. I was strictly a volunteer and expected no payment, as I fe...
by touchpack
Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:55 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: Chicago Open 2016 Set Discussion
Replies: 110
Views: 35782

Re: Chicago Open 2016 Set Discussion

Ah, I forgot to comment on the preponderance of orgo in this tournament, especially in the packets played by the top bracket. It indeed was A Thing. 50% orgo is by no means standard in 2016--NAQT mandates between 25% and 37.5% orgo, while I personally aim for around 30-40%. By my count, the tossups ...
by touchpack
Fri Jul 29, 2016 1:49 am
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Do We Want/Need More Computer Stuff Per Round?
Replies: 13
Views: 4148

Re: Do We Want/Need More Computer Stuff Per Round?

It's worth noting that most high schoolers get basic chemistry training in high school, and although the focus on computer science is rising in higher education and even in high school, it's still certainly the case that the basic literacy rate for CS is lower than that for chemistry. I'd venture t...
by touchpack
Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:15 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Do We Want/Need More Computer Stuff Per Round?
Replies: 13
Views: 4148

Re: Do We Want/Need More Computer Stuff Per Round?

What else would need to be squeezed to make room? (Chemistry?) :mad: As much work as I've done in the past few years demonstrating that 1/1 chemistry is viable without shoving orgo down everyone's throats, I wouldn't be against something like chem-> 0.75/0.75 with all thermodynamics folded into phy...
by touchpack
Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:18 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: Chicago Open 2016 Set Discussion
Replies: 110
Views: 35782

Re: Chicago Open 2016 Set Discussion

I thought this tournament's science (at least in bio/chem/physics) was very well written, but simultaneously very hard. I would staunchly defend the engineering content in this set--it was excellently written, and it covered a wide variety of topics (off the top of my head, I can remember questions ...
by touchpack
Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:00 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: The Barbarism of Specialization
Replies: 13
Views: 4706

Re: The Barbarism of Specialization

To clarify, I thought that the bonus part on "list the steps of a cross-coupling reaction in order" was good, but it's about at the limit of what you can reasonably expect a player to be able to do within the format of this game. I frequently do that type of difficulty analysis, actually! I like to ...
by touchpack
Thu Jul 28, 2016 3:23 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: The Barbarism of Specialization
Replies: 13
Views: 4706

Re: The Barbarism of Specialization

As a sort of a corollary to this point, I'd like to point out that there were some science bonus parts in this CO that, in pursuit of rewarding real knowledge, were incredibly difficult to impossible to answer within 5 seconds. I think the thought process behind some of these parts is good, but writ...
by touchpack
Wed Jun 15, 2016 6:55 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: Eternal Sonata (video game music)
Replies: 23
Views: 8720

Re: Eternal Sonata (video game music)

Vissi d'arte wrote:Assuming this runs on Side Event Weekend, will there potentially be a Skype mirror for those of us who are unable to make it out to one of the physical locations?

(Please say yes please say yes please say yes)
^

I won't be attending side event weekend but would VERY much like to play this!
by touchpack
Wed Jun 08, 2016 12:42 am
Forum: High school area archives
Topic: 2016 HSNCT discussion
Replies: 133
Views: 58335

Re: 2016 HSNCT discussion

Condensation reaction means the production of water as a reaction product. Dehydration synthesis is the addition of two substances to form a substance and water, both as reaction products. Thus, condensation reaction = dehydration synthesis. Put bluntly, no, you're wrong. A condensation is formally...
by touchpack
Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:36 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: warning: limitless indalecio discussion
Replies: 31
Views: 11753

Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

There are a couple points that haven't yet been made: 1) Despite Jake's repeated insistence that everyone involved knew what they were getting into, this is blatantly a lie. In the original thread, he makes claims that "a lot of people will want to play these questions!" and tries to organize logist...
by touchpack
Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:03 am
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Your vanity writing sucks. Fix it!
Replies: 15
Views: 5753

Re: Your vanity writing sucks. Fix it!

I just wish we could all take a step back from ourselves and realize that sometimes fun is just fun, and there's not a need for this overarching, passive aggressive "advice" like the OP is spewing. I wouldn't dismiss Ike's point or aim so quickly. If your questions are bad, then for a lot of people...
by touchpack
Mon May 30, 2016 3:59 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: warning: limitless indalecio discussion
Replies: 31
Views: 11753

Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Warning: this post is intensely circle-jerky. Cover your eyes while reading. Jake, one of the main problems with the packet was not just that it asked about really really obscure games (I can somewhat understand why you did this, although it was not fun playing through a 23-tossup packet containing ...
by touchpack
Sun May 08, 2016 9:06 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: What Makes a Good Regular-Difficulty Set (comparatively)
Replies: 40
Views: 13042

Re: What Makes a Good Regular-Difficulty Set (comparatively)

Preface to this post: I'm terrible at history questions. I think the main pitfall of the British Empire question is it's very difficult to parse. Sure, in retrospect the answer makes complete sense, but the way the question is worded doesn't point the player towards the answer unless they know the c...
by touchpack
Mon May 02, 2016 2:20 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 MUT: Thanks and general discussion
Replies: 51
Views: 8396

Re: Thanks and general discussion

A lot of this frustration comes from the fact that the responses from the editors with respect to this criticism have been largely flippant, dismissive, or mischaracterizations of the core argument. Sorry Mike, but your last post misses the entire point--the issue is not that tossups on fringe / "no...
by touchpack
Mon May 02, 2016 12:09 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: 2016 MUT: Thanks and general discussion
Replies: 51
Views: 8396

Re: Thanks and general discussion

To the broader point, ecology, evolutionary biology, and organismal biology are three of the four major topics in biology, along with cellular and molecular biology. If you don't believe me, look no further than the irrefutable source that is Wikipedia . (To my mind, quizbowl also has a fifth topic...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 27, 2016 8:37 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: Make your questions interesting!
Replies: 9
Views: 3912

Re: Make your questions interesting!

This definitely also applies to science questions! My personal philosophy is that a good question should not only tell you what something is, it should also communicate why you should care about it . This is, as others have mentioned, much easier to do in bonuses than tossups, but it's certainly pos...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 27, 2016 8:25 pm
Forum: Quizbowl History Forum
Topic: 25 for 25: A Definitive List of the Greatest ACF Players
Replies: 29
Views: 18235

Re: 25 for 25: A Definitive List of the Greatest ACF Players

These posts about specialists interest me. I'm what you might call a hyper-specialist--outside of my categories (science and jazz), I usually only get like, 1-2 tossups per tournament, and even within science, the bulk of my points come from physics and chemistry. This is assuming I'm playing in a s...
by touchpack
Thu Apr 21, 2016 12:49 am
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: ACF Nationals Submissions Feedback
Replies: 1
Views: 1478

Re: ACF Nationals Submissions Feedback

Wow guys, I've gotten almost 3 times as many requests as I did last year just in the first hour! I'll try to get through as many of them as I can tomorrow.
by touchpack
Wed Apr 20, 2016 11:40 pm
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: ACF Nationals Submissions Feedback
Replies: 1
Views: 1478

ACF Nationals Submissions Feedback

Hello all, Anyone that submitted a packet to ACF Nationals and wants feedback on the science in their packet can e-mail me for feedback at wtbusse[at sign]gmail.com. People who have gotten feedback from me before can attest to the fact that I tend to be very thorough--I highly encourage anyone inter...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 20, 2016 12:35 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: ACF Nationals 2016 Discussion
Replies: 74
Views: 22111

Re: ACF Nationals 2016 Discussion

Not to beat a dead horse, but Thomas Bradwardine is great, and contemporary logicians like Greg Restall and Catarina Dutilh Novaes still look to him as a source of fresh ideas for solving philosophical problems. This brings me to a more serious point, which is that in philosophy, old ideas are alwa...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 20, 2016 12:29 am
Forum: College area archives
Topic: ACF Nationals 2016 Discussion
Replies: 74
Views: 22111

Re: ACF Nationals 2016 Discussion

I'd like to extend special thanks to Eric Mukherjee for writing questions, finding extra clues, and generally providing valuable commentary on my stuff. (especially the biology!) It was immensely helpful during a time where I was very busy with real life obligations, ICT, and nationals all at the sa...
by touchpack
Wed Apr 13, 2016 3:04 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER Question-Specific Discussion
Replies: 9
Views: 2462

Re: Question-Specific Discussion

The second line of the tossup on photomultiplier tubes mentions the number 1.24 being in the denominator of an equation. I don't know whether the overall sentence is uniquely identifying, but I wanted to point out that this number comes up all the time in equations describing a wide variety of phot...
by touchpack
Mon Apr 11, 2016 10:09 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER General Discussion
Replies: 20
Views: 5181

Re: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER General Discussion

I was expecting high levels of whimsicality and difficulty, but I was surprised, the whimiscality and difficulty were several orders of magnitude more than I anticipated. I was not expecting a tossup on UNIFAC at "nationals-minus" difficulty. Apparently, when a tournament is announced to be nationa...
by touchpack
Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:08 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER General Discussion
Replies: 20
Views: 5181

Re: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER General Discussion

I think that, for what was basically a guerilla tournament written in a week, this was pretty good. It doesn't hold a candle to a well-curated set like Lederberg 2, but it was still fun to play. I can give some more specific feedback when I see the packets.

Also +1 to the praise for these stats!
by touchpack
Sat Mar 26, 2016 1:16 pm
Forum: College area archives
Topic: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER
Replies: 81
Views: 34699

Re: AVOGADRO'S NUMBER

Secondly, if you're the powers that be, I urge you to cancel / postpone this tournament again to something more sensible. I urge this not to happen; rather, people should just be responsible with their writing. Seconded, mainly for the selfish reason that if this doesn't happen at Nats I won't get ...
by touchpack
Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:50 am
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: "stanford housewrite" Question-Specific Discussion
Replies: 41
Views: 10136

Re: Question-Specific Discussion

that rigid rotor tossup is missing an extremely necessary prompt for phrases along the lines of "tops". While the wikipedia article for "rigid rotor" does say molecules are classified as symmetric/spherical/asymmetric rotors other sources refer to them symmetric/spherical/asymmetric tops. It's also...
by touchpack
Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:27 am
Forum: Collegiate Discussion
Topic: "stanford housewrite" Question-Specific Discussion
Replies: 41
Views: 10136

Re: Question-Specific Discussion

The tossup on cobalt has a clear hose for iron near the end. It reads: "The standard source for Mössbauer spectroscopy is an isotope of this metal that decays to iron-57." The way it should have been written is something like this: "An isotope of this metal beta decays into the standard gamma ray s...