ProtoBowl

Packet databases and other quizbowl sites, apps, or software should be discussed here.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Fri Nov 30, 2012 5:21 pm

O Fortuna wrote:I'm not sure if there's anything you can do about it, but people are able to repeatedly circumvent the banning mechanism by masking their IP address. It can get somewhat problematic.
I don't think that's the actual problem, we aren't doing any IP specific bans yet.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by O Fortuna » Fri Nov 30, 2012 5:25 pm

Ah well, I guess they were just refreshing and coming back in then. They claimed to be blocking their IP address, but I suppose it didn't make a difference either way.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:59 pm

O Fortuna wrote:Ah well, I guess they were just refreshing and coming back in then. They claimed to be blocking their IP address, but I suppose it didn't make a difference either way.
Anyway I just added per-room IP bans and a three-strike policy (i.e. getting banned three times from an IP results in a 20 minute ban from a given room). It probably won't work until tomorrow at the earliest.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Eddie » Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:09 am

Is the server down?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:13 am

pk14ster wrote:Is the server down?
Yes, It seems to be a problem with our hosting provider. We are working on it though, sorry for the downtime.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:57 pm

It would be awesome if you could set multiple difficulty levels without enabling them all, e.g. being able to see HS and College, but not MS. Also, something that would be really helpful would be separate difficulty settings for each category.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vinteuil » Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:23 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:It would be awesome if you could set multiple difficulty levels without enabling them all, e.g. being able to see HS and College, but not MS. Also, something that would be really helpful would be separate difficulty settings for each category.
Yes, this would be great.

There was a huge amount of lag for my teammates and me last night (every room); is there any way we can help reduce server load?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:43 pm

perlnerd666 wrote:
thyringe_supine wrote:It would be awesome if you could set multiple difficulty levels without enabling them all, e.g. being able to see HS and College, but not MS. Also, something that would be really helpful would be separate difficulty settings for each category.
Yes, this would be great.

There was a huge amount of lag for my teammates and me last night (every room); is there any way we can help reduce server load?
We've never really had a good opportunity to study the lag when it happened, so when latency is high, please send us an email at info@protobowl.com
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by The ChatSack Triple-Play » Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:02 pm

Upon loading the page, a question from the VHSL sets on The Scarlet Letter seems to be at the very bottom consistently. Is this a known bug?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:12 pm

HopefullyUnknown wrote:Upon loading the page, a question from the VHSL sets on The Scarlet Letter seems to be at the very bottom consistently. Is this a known bug?
Do you have it bookmarked (i.e. is it starred)?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by The ChatSack Triple-Play » Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:38 pm

vestben wrote:
HopefullyUnknown wrote:Upon loading the page, a question from the VHSL sets on The Scarlet Letter seems to be at the very bottom consistently. Is this a known bug?
Do you have it bookmarked (i.e. is it starred)?
And now I'm trying to figure out how exactly I didn't notice that.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by MallyBrutality » Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:55 am

Protobowl has made a huge difference within my team's play in less than a month! One of our players has become a complete juggernaut! I commented on Facebook about an app for androids. That would be super! Some suggestions: a button or option to go offline instead of only a prompt when there is slow connection, and a button to ban someone.. maybe create accounts? Anyways, I love you guys and all that you do! (:

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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Mon Dec 10, 2012 11:39 am

MallyBrutality wrote:Protobowl has made a huge difference within my team's play in less than a month! One of our players has become a complete juggernaut! I commented on Facebook about an app for androids. That would be super! Some suggestions: a button or option to go offline instead of only a prompt when there is slow connection, and a button to ban someone.. maybe create accounts? Anyways, I love you guys and all that you do! (:

Accounts will be out in a couple of weeks, most likely, along with a lot of other new features. As far as an offline button there is currently one, it's just not very prominent. It's in the Miscellaneous section, which is on the side under the leader board and it looks like a regular link. The ban button is also already implemented however it only becomes available under certain conditions. If the conditions for a potential ban tribunal are met a small button next to the persons name will appear, if you press that the other users in the room will be prompted to either ban him or leave him. I'm really glad that protobowl is helping your team, thanks for the feedback!
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Wed Dec 12, 2012 1:46 pm

Good: It now has legit prompting?
Bad: It isn't accepting things it should, due mainly to lazy people typing answerlines. I was prompted on 'Slaughterhouse Five'. If anything, you should be prompted for using the number, it's spelled out on the actual book cover.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Eddie » Wed Dec 12, 2012 11:45 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:Good: It now has legit prompting?
Bad: It isn't accepting things it should, due mainly to lazy people typing answerlines. I was prompted on 'Slaughterhouse Five'. If anything, you should be prompted for using the number, it's spelled out on the actual book cover.
I was prompted on "Jason" when the answer line was, in fact, "Jason." A couple of other people have had similar problems where the full answer is prompted on.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Sat Dec 15, 2012 7:00 pm

I just realized: there's no option to turn off the neg penalty. Could this be put in?

Also, a couple of things for when permanent accounts are created:

Can we reserve our regular UN prior to implementation?
I don't want anyone to steal mine.
Can we have individual/team avatars in the leaderboard?
I want one.
Can we have a room where you must join a team to play?
Team function hasn't been used much, despite really good functionality. This would help remedy that situation.
Can there be a permanent leaderboard?
Like all time combined, time adjusted, etc.
Can we export lists of bookmarked questions to raw text to share with other users?
If you think someone in particular would find a certain question really funny or helpful.

I have really high hopes for Pb. Maybe in a year or two irl quizbowl will be like irl mail. Who knows?


EDIT: I figured out how to make the prompt system accept your correct answer. It works with the Jason question and the Ivan common link. All you have to do is type the answer twice.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Eddie » Sat Dec 15, 2012 9:34 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:irl quizbowl will be like irl mail
We'll be sending questions and answers back and forth in envelopes?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Sun Dec 16, 2012 12:43 am

no, more as in being rendered largely obselete.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by The Bold Ideas of Bernie Sanders (I-VT) » Sun Dec 16, 2012 2:45 am

Also, there's no option to turn off getting points for answering tossups correctly. Might this be remedied?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:09 am

Heard Kevin got accepted into MIT. Congratulations!

Also, @above poster, why would you want to disable tossup scoring? Some tournaments don't have neg penalties.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Mon Dec 17, 2012 12:08 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:I just realized: there's no option to turn off the neg penalty. Could this be put in?

Also, a couple of things for when permanent accounts are created:

Can we reserve our regular UN prior to implementation?
I don't want anyone to steal mine.
Can we have individual/team avatars in the leaderboard?
I want one.
Can we have a room where you must join a team to play?
Team function hasn't been used much, despite really good functionality. This would help remedy that situation.
Can there be a permanent leaderboard?
Like all time combined, time adjusted, etc.
Can we export lists of bookmarked questions to raw text to share with other users?
If you think someone in particular would find a certain question really funny or helpful.

I have really high hopes for Pb. Maybe in a year or two irl quizbowl will be like irl mail. Who knows?


EDIT: I figured out how to make the prompt system accept your correct answer. It works with the Jason question and the Ivan common link. All you have to do is type the answer twice.
- Reserving user names would be over complicated for us, but don't worry I'm sure that you will be able to get the one you want. Also, we have not finalized how we will handle user names, it's possible that they will be flexible, i.e. non-permanent.

- Yes, user avatars will be done through gravatar. They won't be implemented directly into the leaderboard because that would be very cluttered. They will be seen in various other parts of the site, like user profile pages, stats pages, your own settings area, and when you click on someones name within the laptop.

- More themed rooms are defiantly something that we have been thinking about, a team based room could defiantly be a possibility.We would like to see more team utilization and have some other plans for this that should be pretty cool.

- Permanent leaderboard is a point of contention between Kevin and I. He doesn't think it promotes a good environment while I don't agree. At some point in the future it's possible we will have a social structure, i.e. a friend system, in which case you will be able to see a leaderboard between you and your friends. On the other hand all users will have a public statistics page, so you could compare that way until other leaderboard options are realized.

- As a follow up to the leaderboard request I'll tell you that there will be more statistics as well as cool and (hopefully) useful visualizations.

- Bookmarked questions will become further integrated into the application, there will be a page where you can view every bookmarked question that you have ever done. I think it's defiantly possible for us to allow you to export questions, until that time screenshots or copy/paste works pretty well.

We also have high hopes for Protobowl and are constantly trying to think of ways to improve it and in doing so hopefully help people learn or get better at trivia. We have a lot of plans that could help bring Protobowl into a more mainstream audience via easier questions and we have some ideas for creating questions based off of wikipedia articles. Overall though this is a very fun project for Kevin and I, and we are working as hard as possible to make it the best experience for all of you.

Yes, Kevin did get into MIT. Big congrats to him, he will continue doing amazing things I'm sure =D
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Aishvar » Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:44 pm

Is there any possibility of implementing a search feature similar to quizbowldb with an option to print out or at the very least export to PDF? That helped me study so much and the new quizbowldb doesn't really help.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:44 pm

Aishvar wrote:Is there any possibility of implementing a search feature similar to quizbowldb with an option to print out or at the very least export to PDF? That helped me study so much and the new quizbowldb doesn't really help.
I'll add this to my ever expanding todo list, it's definetly a possibility.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Tue Dec 18, 2012 1:44 am

Cool, because I defiantly want to be able to play with people who can actually play science, and am also going to defiantly look for the most annoying gif possible to associate with myself. Defiantly.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Eddie » Tue Dec 18, 2012 1:55 am

Do you think you could add a PPG statistic to the little stats sidebar when you click on someone's name? It could be split up into "lifetime PPG" and "PPG in the last 20 tossups" or something. I think it would be easy to do and would definitely *ahem* be more helpful to gauge prowess than having a raw total score.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Tue Dec 18, 2012 6:50 am

pk14ster wrote:Do you think you could add a PPG statistic to the little stats sidebar when you click on someone's name? It could be split up into "lifetime PPG" and "PPG in the last 20 tossups" or something. I think it would be easy to do and would definitely *ahem* be more helpful to gauge prowess than having a raw total score.
PPG in the last 20 tossups is what the "Points earned in last 20 questions" settings basically does.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:48 am

There's something wrong with the randomisation algorithm. Sometimes it gets stuck into repeating a tossup every second, or fourth question, or back-to-back, though this can be mitigated by skipping. I think it may be triggered by enabling a custom distribution, and changing the ratios too much, especially when the category isn't very common to begin with. For example, this morning I've answered the same Stoicism toss-up like fifteen times.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Eddie » Wed Dec 19, 2012 2:06 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:For example, this morning I've answered the same Stoicism toss-up like fifteen times.
Heh, I've racked up five hundred or so points by memorizing and reflex-buzzing on the same eight or so middle school myth questions.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Wed Dec 19, 2012 3:44 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:There's something wrong with the randomisation algorithm. Sometimes it gets stuck into repeating a tossup every second, or fourth question, or back-to-back, though this can be mitigated by skipping. I think it may be triggered by enabling a custom distribution, and changing the ratios too much, especially when the category isn't very common to begin with. For example, this morning I've answered the same Stoicism toss-up like fifteen times.
Each question is assigned a number, a inc_random which is a number which increments by 1 + (random number between 0 and 1), so that theoretically, each difficulty-category makes a full cycle before repeating, because the algorithm just picks the number that has the lowest inc_random.

The problem is that when a question gets its category changed, from a rare category into a popular one, you get an inc_random which is significantly (i.e. > 2 smaller than the next smallest), and you get in a sort of loop until the gap closes.

The way to solve this is to change your category/difficulty so that it's only the afflicted pair and skip a lot of times, until it gets fixed. This might take up to like 100 questions because the gap might be that large.

I'll write an actual fix soon.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by mithokie » Wed Dec 19, 2012 4:24 pm

Assuming that you have a random number generator available which I will call rand(), and you are already collecting data on how many times a question has been read [ int(inc_random) ], you could choose the question with the smallest value of value=(rand()+int(inc_random))/rand(). This biases the selection toward questions that have been played less often, but does not disallow the questions that have been played with higher frequency like your current method. Of course this requires an update of "value" for all questions each time a question needs to be selected, which could be unnecessarily slow depending on how it is implemented. Good luck!
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:16 pm

mithokie wrote:Assuming that you have a random number generator available which I will call rand(), and you are already collecting data on how many times a question has been read [ int(inc_random) ], you could choose the question with the smallest value of value=(rand()+int(inc_random))/rand(). This biases the selection toward questions that have been played less often, but does not disallow the questions that have been played with higher frequency like your current method. Of course this requires an update of "value" for all questions each time a question needs to be selected, which could be unnecessarily slow depending on how it is implemented. Good luck!
The current method actually doesn't bias at all* (except in the edge case with category changes), because each category-difficulty pair tracks the inc_random separately. In other words, there's a discrete probability distribution sampler (based on the Vose Alias Method). It first selects a difficulty (unless it's been chosen to something specific) weighted by the number of questions exist (this is computed at the start of the application by querying the db for counts). And then given that difficulty, it selects a category also using the distribution sampler (this is where the custom distribution comes into play when needed, otherwise it uses a category distribution computed at the startup). So by then we've selected a category and a difficulty without even asking the database, and its now that we can query the database for the lowest inc_random.

For instance, Open-Trash questions are all currently 36 (+/- 1), MS-Mythology is 913 (+/- 1), and HS-History is 125 (+/- 1). The fact that within all the category-difficulty pairs, the variance is only +/- 1, means that they're all going to be seen relatively the same amount.

The solution I've implemented is by changing the way category changes are saved to the database. When a question is edited, its inc_random gets reset to the new category-difficulty pair's current minimum (minus 0.1), so the gap shouldn't be any larger than one. This should fix the problem from now on.

* That's actually a lie, there is a slight bias in that it assumes that the probabilities for difficulties can be assumed to be independent of the category distribution. For example, if you're doing exclusively Philosophy questions on All difficulties, some 5% of the time, it'd try to load MS-Philosophy (which doesn't exist) which would lead to an error. A smarter thing to do would be to permute categories and difficulties in order to compute a smarter distribution to sample from, but nobody yet has complained, so I'll assume the current system works.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Wed Dec 19, 2012 10:20 pm

As there have been many reports of "hacking" or otherwise using the web inspector to get answers I thought it would be valid to simply post this here, so as to retroactively limit the number of future questions about it.

tl;dr If you think someone is cheating ban them
It's a little known fact that DRM, that is, digital rights management, is absolutely futile. Trying to prevent questions from being seen, or answers from being displayed is tantamount to ensuring that serial keys are not copied, and mp3s legally purchased from an authorized distributor.

Hackers, though I'm at least slightly concerned by your liberal use of the phrase, are fickle creatures. Its etymology and less pejorative culture, are the people who see challenges and feel compelled to solve them.

And like mathematicians may, in the future if P were to be proven equal to NP, begin the search for a polynomial time integer factorization algorithm. The hacker starts his quest to exploit with a much more powerful and damning omen, that the hacker knows a priori that he or she will succeed in the end. Because like, in that hypothetical universe where P=NP, except in this universe, there is no physical way to get DRM to work.

Instead it's a cat and mouse game between those who create puzzles and those who solve them. And like Inception, it's a quest for Ellen Page to craft some maze within the confines of one minute, that Leo DiCaprio can't solve in two minutes. It can't be done, because it's always, as a rule, easier to destroy than to create.

That's not to say the status quo of the information sharing system of Protobowl is perfect, and undeserving of change. Far from it, there are some rather trivial changes which could be implemented to substantially increase the difficulty of prematurely divulging clues.

The answer could be kept in memory, rather than simply kept hidden by CSS in a div. It could be placed, obfuscated in some obscure recesses of the code, rather than the trivially accessible `room.answer`. And more draconian, we could sacrifice the ability to seamlessly transition between online and offline, lapses in connectivity, by requiring a separate authenticated server request to access the question answer.

But even a handful of words in the leadin provide sufficient entropy as to make the entire endeavor moot. One could simply script something to query QuizbowlDB, looking for a question from that particular tournament, from that particular packet, from that particular round, and starting with those three words.

The hacker is a fickle creature, and raising the bar means fueling the flames.

So if you were disturbed by the tone of the previous few paragraphs, that was more as a reason why Ben should not let me respond to email. We'll probably do something about it eventually, but bear in mind that this would be no panacea. I can not create a maze harder than that which I can solve.

More productive is just banning those who partake in it, which can be done with a simple majority vote and a ban tribunal, which almost anyone can start.
- The Kwokinator
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by BobGHHS » Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:11 pm

This is a really neat app, and I entertained myself for about 90 minutes at work playing with it today. I started with lit for awhile, and had no problems, but when I tried to switch to trash, it seemed about 1/3 of the questions weren't trash questions. I answered many of them nonetheless, but I wanted to make you aware. Here are some of the sets/answerlines that showed up under "trash." - These aren't by any means complaints, just a heads-up to you that some of the subjects may be tagged wrong.

2008 Gaddis I - Ungern-Sternberg
2010 Princeton Buzzerfest - Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God
2011 ACF Nats - Neo-Liberalism
2009 ACF Nats - Prospect Theory
2009 THUNDER - Talcott Parsons
2009 ACF Nats - Idomenes re di Certa
2010 Harvard International - Fanciella del West
2011 SACK - Spheres
2009 DAFT - Steele
2009 RMP Fest - Medina
2011 HSAPQ VHSL Regular Season - I.M. Pei
2010 Princeton Buzzerfest - Ethics
2011 ACF Regionals - Tennis Court Oath
2009 RMP Fest - Mikvah
2009 ACF Nats - Drogheda
2011 MUT - RFK
2009 RMP Fest - The Gay Science
2010 VCU Open - L'Oreal (this could be considered trash but based on the clues, I felt like it was current events at-the-time of course)
2011 Chicago Open - Phillip IV
2010 ACF Regionals - Frederick
2011 Terrapin Invitational Tournament - Ulalume
2010 VCU Open Saturday - Pope Adrian
2011 ACF Nats - Fracture
2010 GDS Ben Cooper Memorial - Stock Clues (borderline trash I guess)
2010 ACF Nats - Sonoluminescence
2011 Terrapin Invitational Tournament - Switzerland
2009 Fichte - Labour Party
2010 ACF Nats - Pedagogical Sketchbook
2011 ACF Regionals - Stephane Mallarme
2009 ACF Nats - Endo Shusaku
2011 ACF Regs - Alex Delarge
2010 Chicago Open Arts - Villa Rotonda

Thank you for spending the time to put this together.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by The Bold Ideas of Bernie Sanders (I-VT) » Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:03 am

BobGHHS wrote: 2010 VCU Open - L'Oreal (this could be considered trash but based on the clues, I felt like it was current events at-the-time of course)

2010 GDS Ben Cooper Memorial - Stock Clues (borderline trash I guess)

2011 Terrapin Invitational Tournament - Switzerland
These are all indeed trash TU's.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Matt Weiner » Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:05 am

The L'Oreal question was current events since it was entirely on political scandals in France that the company was involved in.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by BobGHHS » Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:42 am

Thanks Matt, that was my thought too.

As I was reading through these, my other thought was, I know ACF Nats has no trash but what about regionals? (I was pretty sure Fall did) Just thinking about it because you could basically untag any of the ACF Nats packets from the "trash" tag.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Susan » Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:00 am

BobGHHS wrote:Thanks Matt, that was my thought too.

As I was reading through these, my other thought was, I know ACF Nats has no trash but what about regionals? (I was pretty sure Fall did) Just thinking about it because you could basically untag any of the ACF Nats packets from the "trash" tag.
We do indeed have trash in both Fall and Regionals.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Fri Dec 21, 2012 6:04 pm

Yeah, our question tagging is not necessarily perfect, the easiest and best way to alleviate this problem is to help us out! If you are playing and you see a question that is in the wrong category or otherwise messed up just press the report button and then select the correct info. Although this will be a slow process it's a good way for the community to ensure all the questions are in the right category and correct. On another note, these question reports are reviewed, so don't worry about people changing the database for the worse.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by MowelBovement » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:12 pm

Great job with protobowl. Just a few suggestions.
- Sometimes its really lenient with answers and other times its way too strict
- it gets pretty laggy sometimes
Other than that, its a great alternative to quizbowldb, especially because of the multiplayer. Also, the default usernames are pretty funny sometimes. Would you consider making an iphone app for protobowl, because I still have yet to find a good quizbowl app on the iphone.

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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:18 pm

MowelBovement wrote:Great job with protobowl. Just a few suggestions.
- Sometimes its really lenient with answers and other times its way too strict
- it gets pretty laggy sometimes
Other than that, its a great alternative to quizbowldb, especially because of the multiplayer. Also, the default usernames are pretty funny sometimes. Would you consider making an iphone app for protobowl, because I still have yet to find a good quizbowl app on the iphone.
- The question checking algorithm is far from perfect but it's the best we can do right now, it's a fairly sophisticated endevour trying to emulate a real humans ability to perceive whether an answer would qualify as correct or not since there are prompt's and "accept anything along the lines of x" type of considerations.

- The lag is an issue that we are have been investigating for a long time, it is a top priority of ours.

- A mobile application is definetly in the roadmap, until then the website does work on a mobile browser though it is far from a dedicated application.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Thu Dec 27, 2012 1:52 pm

So I think I've found out the nature and cause of the lag issue, and it should be more or less solved in the latest release.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:42 pm

I have never been able to use the offline feature. I click the 'Disconnect' link, but cannot advance the question after doing so. Is there something I'm doing wrong?
Also, i would still request an option to remove neg penalties/power bonuses in order to better emulate certain formats that do not use those.
And a cap on room population would really be cool. My internet is really feeble.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Thu Dec 27, 2012 5:45 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:I have never been able to use the offline feature. I click the 'Disconnect' link, but cannot advance the question after doing so. Is there something I'm doing wrong?
Also, i would still request an option to remove neg penalties/power bonuses in order to better emulate certain formats that do not use those.
And a cap on room population would really be cool. My internet is really feeble.
What browser do you use?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:48 pm

On my laptop I use Opera. However, I think I have it more or less fixed- you have to give it some time between disconnecting with the link and actually disconnecting?

As a side note, I'm noticing that in addition to spam/hi activity rates, users can qualify for a ban tribunal on the basis of profanity usage? If so, then it definitely makes sense, but it could be used by trolls to ban legitimate users who just swear too much, such as myself. Then again, I guess that means maybe I should stop getting so worked up over quizbowl.

EDIT(2.1.2013): Server down?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vinteuil » Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:43 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:EDIT(2.1.2013): Server down?
http://www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com/protobowl.com

Also seeing this on my end.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by kevink » Thu Jan 03, 2013 3:44 pm

perlnerd666 wrote:
thyringe_supine wrote:EDIT(2.1.2013): Server down?
http://www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com/protobowl.com

Also seeing this on my end.
Oops there was a weird bug that gave a server error to users without the cookie.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by Emil Nolde » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:53 pm

There are a couple of ways the bookmark feature could be improved as well. I'm not sure if the first can really be combated, but once you have a really large number of bookmarked questions (I have maybe 200) you get so much lag it can be really frustrating. It might just be that I'll have to settle for limiting myself, but it'd be nice if that wasn't necessary. Is there any way to store lists of bookmarked questions that wouldn't be so greedy for resources? It doesn't really matter if they're viewable in that state; just so long as they can be replicated, it'd be fine. Now for the thing that I think can and should be implemented. when you have so many bookmarked questions, I would guess you might mark the same tossup twice. That ability shouldn't be disabled, as it can help motivate you into studying more about the subject, but could there be a message that appears in the console or whatever that at least tells you that you already have marked it?

I'm guessing that when accounts are implemented, there will be a control panel or some such thing to organize this.

Oh, and a search feature that only uses your bookmarks would also be helpful. A search feature for the whole database isn't really necessary; QuizbowlDB does that just fine, and I think the two databases are mostly the same
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:11 pm

thyringe_supine wrote:There are a couple of ways the bookmark feature could be improved as well. I'm not sure if the first can really be combated, but once you have a really large number of bookmarked questions (I have maybe 200) you get so much lag it can be really frustrating. It might just be that I'll have to settle for limiting myself, but it'd be nice if that wasn't necessary. Is there any way to store lists of bookmarked questions that wouldn't be so greedy for resources? It doesn't really matter if they're viewable in that state; just so long as they can be replicated, it'd be fine. Now for the thing that I think can and should be implemented. when you have so many bookmarked questions, I would guess you might mark the same tossup twice. That ability shouldn't be disabled, as it can help motivate you into studying more about the subject, but could there be a message that appears in the console or whatever that at least tells you that you already have marked it?

I'm guessing that when accounts are implemented, there will be a control panel or some such thing to organize this.

Oh, and a search feature that only uses your bookmarks would also be helpful. A search feature for the whole database isn't really necessary; QuizbowlDB does that just fine, and I think the two databases are mostly the same
This is all in the works, if I ever finish (it will happen eventually :) ) you should be very happy with the results. All the questions that you bookmark will be stored in the database so you will be able to access them whenever. Searching, sorting etc will of course be available and I can add something so that if you bookmark the same question more than once it indicates that (or puts it at the top of a queue). Once the account stuff is implemented I am going to limit the number of questions that are stored in localstorage to around 5 while logged in (in other words only the most recent 5 bookmarks will render on page load) and all others will be available in your profile area. This should further alleviate any possible lag issues that could occur from the bookmarks.

The two databases are almost identical currently but I'm also working on adding more questions as well as different types of questions (not just Quizbowl but trivia questions in general, such as Jeopardy, Certamen, DOE Science Bowl, HOSA, Math, etc). If anyone has suggestions for types of questions they want in the database, feel free to email us or say something here, we'll be happy to look into different types of trivia so that we can further diversify the database.
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vinteuil » Fri Jan 04, 2013 7:54 pm

kevink wrote:
perlnerd666 wrote:
thyringe_supine wrote:EDIT(2.1.2013): Server down?
http://www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com/protobowl.com

Also seeing this on my end.
Oops there was a weird bug that gave a server error to users without the cookie.
Different bug now?
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Re: ProtoBowl

Post by vestben » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:03 am

Not sure what happened there, I restarted the server. Kevin is asleep and I wasn't paying attention, I'll look into what caused the crash. We are currently juggling between two hosting providers while we try to pinpoint the lag and connection issues so please bare with us. Sorry for the downtime.
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