Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

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Housecarl Shield Wall
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Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Housecarl Shield Wall » Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:29 am

Earlier this summer, I encountered a curious buzzer set. During our testing, multiple players were able to ring in at once. I was worried at first, but the moderator reassured me that the system was simply tracking which players had buzzed after the winner of a buzzer race. Which got me thinking: What formats use this feature and how does it affect play? Given that I've never seen it before in spite of playing in Illinois, which is likely the most motley state in quizbowl with three different championships in three different formats (though they are becoming increasingly similar in recent years) and varying question quality, I imagine it is reserved for the most gimmicky, :chip:-y formats out there.
Spencer Tracy
Bloomington High School (Illinois), Class of 2015

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MLafer
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by MLafer » Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:19 am

This is actually a pretty useful feature for relatively normal formats like shootout. Say person #1 buzzes in and negs -- instead of creating the annoying situation where the next person able to answer is whoever frantically presses the buzzer after the moderator clears it, it gives an advantage to people who were buzzing before the person answered incorrectly and were thus not given the benefit of the additional information that the neg gives.

I think in this situation, much like in say, IRC-based quiz bowl, the person who buzzed in 2nd or 3rd should have the option to 'withdraw' their buzz if they were going in with the same answer as person #1; they would then be able to still buzz in again on the same question.
Matt Lafer
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Mike Bentley
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Mike Bentley » Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:42 am

I'm (very slowly) working on a buzzer system that supports singles-play like this (complete with a withdraw button).
Mike Bentley
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dwd500
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by dwd500 » Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:55 am

My understanding of this type of system is that it's used by a few bible quiz circuits.
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Skepticism and Animal Feed
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Tue Jul 09, 2013 12:32 pm

Yes, my understanding is that the buzzer market is largely driven by the needs of Bible bowl, and we should seek our answers on this in the good book, so to speak.
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Sun Jul 14, 2013 3:30 am

Ashvin tells me some local Ohio formats require this functionality as well.
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Realdeo » Mon Jul 22, 2013 8:07 am

One of the weakness if perhaps, used in a normal QB is that if all 3 players that buzz-in first came from the same team, well it can be kinda of annoying (but usually first,second,third place machine is not conditioned for a ACF or NAQT QB)
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Re: Tracking Second and Third Place in the Buzzer Race

Post by Great Bustard » Wed Jul 31, 2013 5:08 am

Mike Bentley wrote:I'm (very slowly) working on a buzzer system that supports singles-play like this (complete with a withdraw button).
Let me know if you get anywhere with this - this would be a very useful feature for History Bee tournaments, especially in regional finals / at Nationals.
David Madden
Ridgewood (NJ) '99, Princeton '03
Founder and Director: International History Bee and Bowl, National History Bee and Bowl (High School Division), International History Olympiad, United States Geography Olympiad, US History Bee, US Academic Bee and Bowl, National Humanities Bee, National Science Bee, International Academic Bowl.
Adviser and former head coach for Team USA at the International Geography Olympiad

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