NSC 09 question discussion

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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Megalomaniacal Panda on Absinthe » Wed May 27, 2009 10:02 pm

Anti-Climacus wrote:My problem with Atdorfer is that's he's got one well-know work (The Battle of Issus) and is otherwise obscure.
I haven't seen the Altdorfer tossup, but this isn't true at all. Any history of landscapes in European art likely mentions Altdorfer's Landscape with Footbridge and possibly Landscape with Satyr Family. There's also the Florian Altarpiece, particularly the Resurrection panel, amongst his religious works.

Altdorfer is pretty difficult, but I think a few really hard tossups here and there aid in differentiating top teams.

Dearly as I love lesser known Smetana operas (The Kiss, anyone?), it seemed like a pretty unfortunate answer choice. I'll echo the sentiment that a tossup on Smetana would have worked at least as well.
Last edited by Megalomaniacal Panda on Absinthe on Wed May 27, 2009 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Galstaff, Sorceror of Light » Wed May 27, 2009 10:06 pm

RyuAqua wrote: On another other hand, a virtually identical tossup on Smetana that only mentioned operas would have offered you the same outlet...

One more negative thing that sticks out before I see the set and refresh my memory of positives and negatives: "This duckweed-infested body" is one of the worse leadins I've encountered anywhere this year. Deep duckweed knowledge should never be rewarded with TWENTYYYYYYYY.
Greg Tito buzzed on the duckweed clue; it was entertaining. I remember really enjoying the Vergil TU; I'm curious to see the clues following Lausus when the set gets posted. I also liked hearing Lugh come up, since he's pretty cool, and having just read Mother to Son made the Langston Hughes TU fun as well. I love when my English class is useful. I don't remember any specific complaints about this set except for some inconsistent difficulty sometimes; I really enjoyed it.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Bananaquit » Wed May 27, 2009 10:12 pm

RyuAqua wrote:Deep duckweed knowledge should never be rewarded with TWENTYYYYYYYY.
Are you maligning my deep duckweed knowledge? :wink:

On a serious note, I think some of the geography in general was pretty variable in difficulty and quality of writing [the dams question, the above leadin, the (perceived by me) bias toward not-particularly-important cities, the Zambezi River TU, which I thought was fairly obvious early on, and other things I'm forgetting] and could have been done a little better. A minor quibble only.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by DumbJaques » Wed May 27, 2009 10:18 pm

The Dams question originally had a couple of lines of leadin before Itaipu - somewhere along the line, it got cut without my knowledge. I also think I originally had the second line before Itaipu, but I can't remember. It was certainly a failed experiment and shouldn't have been left in the set.

I'm not sure why someone thinks that duckweed is "one of the worst leadins ever" - the duckweed problem is a fairly important ecological issue and, while once again not my intended first line, isn't so amazingly known that it's absurd you're getting the question there. What's the massive problem here?
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by master15625 » Wed May 27, 2009 10:21 pm

Duckinfested one (which probably has the answer Lake Maracaibo, I do not know), I guess is only a bad leadin because it has come up at least two times in NAQT National Tournaments :razz:
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Kouign Amann » Wed May 27, 2009 10:23 pm

DumbJaques wrote:I'm not sure why someone thinks that duckweed is "one of the worst leadins ever" - the duckweed problem is a fairly important ecological issue and, while once again not my intended first line, isn't so amazingly known that it's absurd you're getting the question there. What's the massive problem here?
Duckweed is about as stock as pin manufacturing, in my opinion.
Last edited by Kouign Amann on Wed May 27, 2009 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Tower Monarch » Wed May 27, 2009 10:23 pm

DumbJaques wrote:I'm not sure why someone thinks that duckweed is "one of the worst leadins ever" - the duckweed problem is a fairly important ecological issue and, while once again not my intended first line, isn't so amazingly known that it's absurd you're getting the question there. What's the massive problem here?
I was told during the tournament (I don't remember by whom) that this comes up all the time, in which case I would say it doesn't seem quite important enough for any frequency, but a quick packet search reveals those players must just read Chris Ray geography from last years Terrapin and a bonus from ACF Fall 08...
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Lapego1 » Wed May 27, 2009 10:47 pm

Dasein wrote: Haber-Bosch--The stock 1% world's energy clue
This is why it was just before the giveaway if I'm correctly remembering the way I edited it. I don't think certain stock clues are a problem if they're late enough in a question.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Mike Bentley » Thu May 28, 2009 12:50 am

Megalomanical Panda on Absinthe wrote:
Anti-Climacus wrote:My problem with Atdorfer is that's he's got one well-know work (The Battle of Issus) and is otherwise obscure.
I haven't seen the Altdorfer tossup, but this isn't true at all. Any history of landscapes in European art likely mentions Altdorfer's Landscape with Footbridge and possibly Landscape with Satyr Family. There's also the Florian Altarpiece, particularly the Resurrection panel, amongst his religious works.

Altdorfer is pretty difficult, but I think a few really hard tossups here and there aid in differentiating top teams.

Dearly as I love lesser known Smetana operas (The Kiss, anyone?), it seemed like a pretty unfortunate answer choice. I'll echo the sentiment that a tossup on Smetana would have worked at least as well.
I can make this argument for a lot of artists (e.g. that they're reasonably important in this sub-distribution of art). This doesn't mean that they should come up as a tossup in a high school tournament. Altdorfer has one work that is famous enough for most high school art students to study. A tossup on him is not going to contain very many useful clues for almost all high school players.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by theMoMA » Thu May 28, 2009 3:38 am

Musician questions in the format of __________s by ___________ are very common to the college quizbowl circuit. Is the lack of these in high school what threw people off on that Smetana question? In power, it contained clues about Brandenburgers in Bohemia, The Devil's Wall, and Dalibor, as well as two or three good clues for The Bartered Bride. That seems to be a fair clue structure for a high school tossup on Smetana, if it were only to mention his operas.

I don't think this suffered from the problem with the ICT tossup on Dryden's plays, which led on that they were a cohesive work, since this tossup started along the lines of "One work of this type by this composer..." instead of just saying "one of these works." Should that have been reiterated? I'm trying to figure out what makes this tossup different from the million other "symphonies of Tchaikovsky" or "piano concertos of Beethoven" tossups that get written each year.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Auroni » Thu May 28, 2009 4:03 am

It's possible that Smetana is the sort of composer who has few canonical works (at least in high school) that aren't operatic, whereas the composers for whom these tossups are written have a much better known and varied repertoire

Or it could be that the fact that all of these are operas is self evident and trivial, as arias and characters were probably mentioned in the tossup. Therefore, it only becomes obfuscatory when someone is trying to figure out the composer.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Thu May 28, 2009 7:35 am

JelloBiafra wrote:Or it could be that the fact that all of these are operas is self evident and trivial, as arias and characters were probably mentioned in the tossup. Therefore, it only becomes obfuscatory when someone is trying to figure out the composer.
This is the central element, in all likelihood. I also think that only half of the "full pronoun" (i.e. _this type_ by _this composer_) was repeated, leading to a bemused neg of "operas?!" in my room when it was clear that all the works were operas, but no more knowledge was had.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by DumbJaques » Thu May 28, 2009 12:51 pm

I don't think the duckweed clue from the packet my team wrote for 2008 TIT/MLK came from me, but as Cameron notes, a packet search indicates that it's not jumping all over the place. If NAQT has a bizarre duckweed fetish, oh well, I guess now we'll all have to learn exciting stock clues about Rafael Urdeneta bridge.

I was a bit taken aback by how many things high schoolers kept complaining were "stock" at this tournament. Honestly guys, it is a high school tournament - you are supposed to be able to get some tossups early, and some of those buzzes should come on the first line. If I've written a first line clue nobody can buzz on, I've done a bad job as a writer. And guess what? Carrying that logic results in concluding that SOMEONE should be buzzing on the first/second/third clue. If you're a pretty good player at this tournament, that group may include you. Complaining about a question because you got it early or "everyone in high school knows lines from Holmes's The Deacon's Masterpiece, come on guys!" is silly and leads to the atmosphere where all these entering collegiate freshman write novice tournament tossups on Death of the Author. I think it's reasonable to argue that Duckweed was too early in that question, but I really don't get a lot of the complaints here. The 1% clue was like halfway through the Haber-Bosch question, and there was plenty of buzzable stuff before it. Seven line high school tossups on things like that are going to hit "stock" things in the middle (or they're going to have difficulty cliffs, which are much, much worse). It's great to prepare for PACE by reading or playing regular difficulty and above college events, but realize that these tournaments are not going to be the same.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by rchschem » Thu May 28, 2009 8:39 pm

DumbJaques wrote: I was a bit taken aback by how many things high schoolers kept complaining were "stock" at this tournament... Complaining about a question because you got it early or "everyone in high school knows lines from Holmes's The Deacon's Masterpiece, come on guys!" is silly and leads to the atmosphere where all these entering collegiate freshman write novice tournament tossups on Death of the Author.
Hear, hear.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by First Chairman » Sat May 30, 2009 7:41 am

Sort of related to the "stock" complaints alluded to by Chris... not every player gets it off the early clues. We have a wonderful field where some of the best players in the country are participating. If you read these questions out at a typical undergraduate practice at your mid-level college program, not everyone in that room is going to know the answer so early. You have to have stock clues sometimes.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by at your pleasure » Sun May 31, 2009 5:32 pm

Out of curiousity, when will the set be posted?
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by yoda4554 » Mon Jun 01, 2009 7:36 pm

theMoMA wrote:Musician questions in the format of __________s by ___________ are very common to the college quizbowl circuit. Is the lack of these in high school what threw people off on that Smetana question? In power, it contained clues about Brandenburgers in Bohemia, The Devil's Wall, and Dalibor, as well as two or three good clues for The Bartered Bride. That seems to be a fair clue structure for a high school tossup on Smetana, if it were only to mention his operas.

I don't think this suffered from the problem with the ICT tossup on Dryden's plays, which led on that they were a cohesive work, since this tossup started along the lines of "One work of this type by this composer..." instead of just saying "one of these works." Should that have been reiterated? I'm trying to figure out what makes this tossup different from the million other "symphonies of Tchaikovsky" or "piano concertos of Beethoven" tossups that get written each year.
When they work, though, they're almost always things that are numbered. For a lot of common link topics, numbering is really useful, because it resolves the problem where you recognize one work being described but aren't sure what grouping to associate it with. When you say "the fifth of these unusually begins with a solo cadenza," anyone who recognizes the piece can only group it with the grouping that assigns it No. 5. (If Dryden had, for some silly reason, numbered his plays, that tossup wouldn't have seemed so bad, probably.)

Also, I think there's another reason why you write "piano concertos by Beethoven" instead of just a "Beethoven" tossup with concerti clues: there are very few piano concerti groups that are tossupable at any level (as there are string quartet groups, or sonata groups, etc., and at lower levels even symphony groups)--this at least temporarily widens the answer space beyond a few choices. That is not the case of operas at any level, so I'm not sure why one wouldn't just have this be a tossup on Smetana that restricts itself to opera clues.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by The Atom Strikes! » Mon Jun 01, 2009 10:37 pm

I'm pretty sure that at this level, a tossup on Smetana that uses only opera clues will, in most rooms, just turn into a buzzer race on "The Bartered Bride." But aside from this trivial issue, I think that in general, NSC 09 was a really excellent set with a lot of deep questions on interesting stuff.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by at your pleasure » Mon Jun 01, 2009 10:55 pm

So, when will the set be posted?
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo » Mon Jun 01, 2009 11:16 pm

Or, full results?
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by cdcarter » Fri Jun 05, 2009 6:48 pm

Just received the set and it is posted at http://quizbowlpackets.com/archive/nsc2009.zip
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by The Laughing Man » Fri Jun 05, 2009 8:03 pm

PACE Round 10 wrote:One character in this novel is sent to prison on charges of corrupting a minor named Gabriel, while another was arrested after trying to help Dr. Americo escape from Argentina. Those two men, Valentín and Molina, share a cell and eventually form a relationship. For 15 points, name this Manuel Puig novel.
ANSWER: Kiss of the Spider Woman [or El beso de la mujer araña]
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Small error: there is no Dr. Americo in the Puig novel itself, only in the Barbenco film. As far as I can remember, the same goes for Lidia (a character name I saw in another Kiss of the Spider Woman question.)
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Pilgrim » Fri Jun 05, 2009 11:48 pm

The Laughing Man wrote:
PACE Round 10 wrote:One character in this novel is sent to prison on charges of corrupting a minor named Gabriel, while another was arrested after trying to help Dr. Americo escape from Argentina. Those two men, Valentín and Molina, share a cell and eventually form a relationship. For 15 points, name this Manuel Puig novel.
ANSWER: Kiss of the Spider Woman [or El beso de la mujer araña]
<Gupta>
Small error: there is no Dr. Americo in the Puig novel itself, only in the Barbenco film. As far as I can remember, the same goes for Lidia (a character name I saw in another Kiss of the Spider Woman question.)
I'm pretty sure the problem here arises from the hilarious fact that the Masterplots entry on Kiss of the Spider Woman is actually a plot summary of the film.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by rjaguar3 » Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:16 pm

PACE Round 5 Bonus 2 wrote: [10] When two vectors are linearly independent, this operation between them is zero. It is commonly given as the product of their magnitudes times the cosine of the angle between them.
ANSWER: dot product
I don't believe the italicized part is true. As an example, i and i + j are linearly independent, but their dot product is 1, not 0.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:22 pm

Indeed you're right. All orthogonal vectors are LI, but not all LI vectors are orthogonal.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by at your pleasure » Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:25 pm

Out of curiousity, what does "linear independence" mean?
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:30 pm

Anti-Climacus wrote:Out of curiousity, what does "linear independence" mean?
Say you've got a set of vectors (or anything else, really, but we'll stick to vectors for now), let's say it's i,j, and i + j. That third vector can be represented as some linear combination of the other vectors in the set (for example, 1i + 1j). Therefore, because even one vector fits this criteria, this set of vectors is linearly dependent. Linear independence is when this doesn't happen.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Sat Jun 06, 2009 6:02 pm

In this tossup:
T2. Froome determined a value for this quantity in 1958 using a microwave interferometer and Kerr cells to correct for anomalies in the air. In Minkowski diagrams, it remains constant through the rotation of the space plane. The beta term of the Lorentz factor is the ratio of velocity to this quantity, whose square is equal to one over the product of the permittivity and permeability of free space. Producing Cherenkov radiation when exceeded in a medium, this is, for 10 points, what quantity given by wavelength times frequency for a photon, with value 3 times 10 to the eighth meters per second and often symbolized c.
ANSWER: speed of light in a vacuum [accept c until mentioned]
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Tower Monarch » Sun Jun 07, 2009 4:29 pm

AlphaQuizBowler wrote:In this tossup:
does interferometer come way too early?
Probably, just because this is high school, but interferometers are used in so many experiments, buzzes there must be recognized as guesses only. It certainly does bring speed of light to mind faster than I imagine a Minkowski reference does (I didn't learn the latter until delving into applied linear algebra, whereas I associated interferometers with the speed of light by ninth grade).
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by intothenegs » Sun Jun 07, 2009 9:59 pm

PACE NSC Round 10 wrote:This work is Chopin’s opus 10, number one, and musically depicts the Russian capture of Warsaw in 1831.
ANSWER: the Revolutionary Etude
This should be Opus 10, No. 12.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Mon Jun 08, 2009 1:05 pm

Anti-Climacus wrote:Out of curiousity, what does "linear independence" mean?
A set of objects {x1,x2,...,xN} is linearly independent if there do not exist coefficients {a1,...,aN} such that
a1x1 + a2x2 + ... + aNxN = 0
and linearly dependent otherwise. One can re-write this to find that one can write any one (at least) of the objects in terms of the others if the set is linearly dependent.

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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by master15625 » Mon Jun 08, 2009 5:15 pm

Captain Sinico wrote:
Anti-Climacus wrote:Out of curiousity, what does "linear independence" mean?
A set of objects {x1,x2,...,xN} is linearly independent if there do not exist coefficients {a1,...,aN} such that
a1x1 + a2x2 + ... + aNxN = 0
and linearly dependent otherwise. One can re-write this to find that one can write any one (at least) of the objects in terms of the others if the set is linearly dependent.

MaS
Slight correction, {x1,x2,...,xN} is linearly independent if {0,0,0,...0} is the only set of coefficients {a1,...,aN} that make the equation a1x1+a2x2+...+aNxN=0 true.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by at your pleasure » Mon Jun 08, 2009 5:32 pm

Okay, thanks.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Tower Monarch » Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:53 pm

master15625 wrote:Slight correction, {x1,x2,...,xN} is linearly independent if {0,0,0,...0} is the only set of coefficients {a1,...,aN} that make the equation a1x1+a2x2+...+aNxN=0 true.
This correction was pointless, as Mike clearly meant nontrivial (in this case non-0) coefficients, so his definition is completely fine....
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by master15625 » Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:56 pm

Tower Monarch wrote:
master15625 wrote:Slight correction, {x1,x2,...,xN} is linearly independent if {0,0,0,...0} is the only set of coefficients {a1,...,aN} that make the equation a1x1+a2x2+...+aNxN=0 true.
This correction was pointless, as Mike clearly meant nontrivial (in this case non-0) coefficients, so his definition is completely fine....
I mean, I wasn't trying to find fault in his statement. I know that he knows that 0+0=0. So I guess I should've said, slight addition, rather than slight correction.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Tue Jun 09, 2009 11:35 am

Yeah, Neil's right; it's important to explicitly exclude the trivial case. Thanks, Neil.

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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:57 am

7. Christ in the House of Mary and Martha is thought to be the first work of this artist, who painted a servant maid handing over the title note to a lute-playing woman in The Love Letter. A 1994 cleaning revealed gold trim on the title object of this artist’s Woman Holding a Balance, while a representation of history poses in front of a map in his The Allegory of Painting. He may be best remembered for depicting a female wearing a blue and yellow Turkish turban in one work, while the Rotterdam Gate is visible in his depiction of his hometown. For 10 points, name this Dutch painter of Girl with a Pearl Earring and View of Delft.
ANSWER: Jan Vermeer
<Jang>
A better-known version of Christ in the House of Mary and Martha was done by Velazquez, so that's not a good title to start with.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by master15625 » Fri Jun 12, 2009 11:05 am

AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
7. Christ in the House of Mary and Martha is thought to be the first work of this artist, who painted a servant maid handing over the title note to a lute-playing woman in The Love Letter. A 1994 cleaning revealed gold trim on the title object of this artist’s Woman Holding a Balance, while a representation of history poses in front of a map in his The Allegory of Painting. He may be best remembered for depicting a female wearing a blue and yellow Turkish turban in one work, while the Rotterdam Gate is visible in his depiction of his hometown. For 10 points, name this Dutch painter of Girl with a Pearl Earring and View of Delft.
ANSWER: Jan Vermeer
<Jang>
A better-known version of Christ in the House of Mary and Martha was done by Velazquez, so that's not a good title to start with.
That is true, I guess he should have switched The first known painting was... so that it wouldn't be confusing.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Sat Jun 13, 2009 5:08 pm

19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Sat Jun 13, 2009 5:49 pm

AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo » Sun Jun 14, 2009 3:29 pm

ColJade wrote:
AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
You shouldn't have. St. Andrew's feast day is November 30th (my grandmother used to call me every year on it)... probably one of the top 3 or 4 most important saint feast days on the liturgical calendar.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Rococo A Go Go » Sun Jun 14, 2009 4:32 pm

ColJade wrote:
AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
This is a question that would be rewarding to those who have deep knowledge of the Christian calendar, but could trip up those who don't. I don't see it as more or less tricky than most questions though. It may trip up people because of Advent's similarities to Lent, not because of the way the question is written. Unless you know about the Jesuit's ideas, it would be prudent to wait for a better clue. Like most pyramidal questions, the number of potential answers here diminishes as more clues are revealed.

I guess a decent analogy would be a question that could be about Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, or James Madison because it mentions a Democratic-Republican President in the early 19th Century who lived in the area around Chancellorsville, VA. In this hypothetical analogy question, the leadin mentions a President who went to Princeton, and then the aforementioned clues come throughout the question before the giveaways, thus allowing those of us who know a lot about Madison to answer, but meaning those who don't would have to wait for a clue they know, or else neg on the notion that Jefferson and Monroe meets a lot of the criteria they hear.

If you want to avoid negs on similar topics, you'd have to avoid questions about things that someone could get confused with something else. That would make Quizbowl very boring.



EDIT: I'm not a good question writer, and I know my analogy question has some holes, but hopefully you can see the point I was trying to make.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:17 pm

Caesar Rodney HS wrote:
ColJade wrote:
AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
You shouldn't have. St. Andrew's feast day is November 30th (my grandmother used to call me every year on it)... probably one of the top 3 or 4 most important saint feast days on the liturgical calendar.
Notice how the clue I'm objecting to (and I'm guessing they negged on) is before the St. Andrew's feast day clue.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:24 pm

soaringeagle22 wrote:
ColJade wrote:
AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
This is a question that would be rewarding to those who have deep knowledge of the Christian calendar, but could trip up those who don't. I don't see it as more or less tricky than most questions though. It may trip up people because of Advent's similarities to Lent, not because of the way the question is written. Unless you know about the Jesuit's ideas, it would be prudent to wait for a better clue. Like most pyramidal questions, the number of potential answers here diminishes as more clues are revealed.

I guess a decent analogy would be a question that could be about Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, or James Madison because it mentions a Democratic-Republican President in the early 19th Century who lived in the area around Chancellorsville, VA. In this hypothetical analogy question, the leadin mentions a President who went to Princeton, and then the aforementioned clues come throughout the question before the giveaways, thus allowing those of us who know a lot about Madison to answer, but meaning those who don't would have to wait for a clue they know, or else neg on the notion that Jefferson and Monroe meets a lot of the criteria they hear.

If you want to avoid negs on similar topics, you'd have to avoid questions about things that someone could get confused with something else. That would make Quizbowl very boring.



EDIT: I'm not a good question writer, and I know my analogy question has some holes, but hopefully you can see the point I was trying to make.
As a practicing Catholic, I happen to know when our statues and images are covered, and I associate that more with Lent than Advent. It has been shown that other Catholics did the same. I'm not sure you understand exactly how good questions are written, but one of the requirements is for a unique lead-in. Mentioning a Catholic time period that has covered pictures is non-unique, thus rendering the clue at best useless and at worst confusing.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Huang » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:28 pm

soaringeagle22 wrote: Like most pyramidal questions, the number of potential answers here diminishes as more clues are revealed.
All clues used should uniquely identify one possible answer, not multiple answers. Clues that could lead to multiple answers are vague, useless, and anti-pyramidal.
soaringeagle22 wrote: I guess a decent analogy would be a question that could be about Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, or James Madison because it mentions a Democratic-Republican President in the early 19th Century who lived in the area around Chancellorsville, VA. In this hypothetical analogy question, the leadin mentions a President who went to Princeton, and then the aforementioned clues come throughout the question before the giveaways, thus allowing those of us who know a lot about Madison to answer, but meaning those who don't would have to wait for a clue they know, or else neg on the notion that Jefferson and Monroe meets a lot of the criteria they hear.
If you wrote a question similar to what you've just described above, it would be a really bad question. The university a president attends is not historically important enough to be used as an early clue. If a university clue were important, which is extremely rare, then it should only be mentioned at the giveaway, if at all.
soaringeagle22 wrote: If you want to avoid negs on similar topics, you'd have to avoid questions about things that someone could get confused with something else. That would make Quizbowl very boring.
Biographical trivia clues appearing in questions doesn't create any excitement neither does guessing what the answer is from bad vague clues
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by theMoMA » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:47 pm

This is my mistake; had I known that there was a similar practice during Lent, I would have edited the question to avoid ambiguity. My lax Protestant upbringing has failed me again.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Rococo A Go Go » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:55 pm

I'm also a practicing Catholic, not just some idiot who wondered in off the street.

The unique lead-in is the Jesuit theologian. However, upon further review, I was a little bit off base in my observations. I wasn't recognizing that the vague clue was what everyone was complaining about, and I apologize for that. In this case, the specific clue in question could confuse someone who was a little buzzer happy. I was under the impression that you had negged after St. Andrew, and I see that assumption was wrong. You know what they say when you assume...

Either way, it's not a completely horrible question. My hypothetical one was, and I know it was as I pointed out at the bottom of my post (I was trying to use an example, that's all). But the example I was using was referring to the fact that sometimes writers, for better or worse, can't seem to write a perfect question about some topics that are easily confused. This is one of them. Advent is so similar to Lent that any question about it is definitely going to remind people (especially us Catholics) of Lent, even if nearly every clue is specific. Then again, we shouldn't assume that "Christian" and "time period" always mean one thing when playing, but it is a very tempting mistake to make.
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by JackGlerum » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:56 pm

Huang wrote:
soaringeagle22 wrote: Like most pyramidal questions, the number of potential answers here diminishes as more clues are revealed.
All clues used should uniquely identify one possible answer, not multiple answers. Clues that could lead to multiple answers are vague, useless, and anti-pyramidal.
You're misreading Nick, I think. He's just saying that when you hear a tossup, certain possible answers are cancelled as more clues are revealed. He understands that a tossup begins with "this X" and can be one answer and one answer only.

I can provide an example of the "answer-cancelling thought process", but hopefully it's self-explanatory.

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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Sun Jun 14, 2009 6:54 pm

Rather, this is my mistake; had I known that there was a similar practice during Lent, I would have in the first place written the question to avoid ambiguity. My lax atheist upbringing has failed me again.

(I tried to ensure that that dude didn't say the same thing about other periods, but realistically, that means that that clue (Benterim) is buzzed on by 0.1% of the field and hoses 50% of the part of the field that knows of the second clue (image covering). My bad.)
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Re: NSC 09 question discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Sun Jun 14, 2009 7:04 pm

AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
Caesar Rodney HS wrote:
ColJade wrote:
AlphaQuizBowler wrote:
19. Jesuit theologian Benterim claimed that a thirteenth-century law decreed that pictures should be covered during this time period, and its beginning is defined by the Sunday closest to the feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle. Methodism holds that “Kingdomtide” precedes this event, and this event features a day when a pink candle is lit called Gaudete Sunday. For 10 points, name this Christian holiday, commonly symbolized by a wreath with one candle per week, four in all, which leads up to Christmas and which commonly features chocolate-filled calendars.
ANSWER: Advent
<Watkins>
Maybe mentioning that specific theologian makes the leadin unique, but once you mention Christianity and covering pictures, you're inviting a neg with "Lent" or "Holy Week," and, even if nobody negs, it still pretty much narrows it down to two answers.
I'll confirm this. When we're not Lewis County, we're a Catholic school, and we negged with "Lent".
You shouldn't have. St. Andrew's feast day is November 30th (my grandmother used to call me every year on it)... probably one of the top 3 or 4 most important saint feast days on the liturgical calendar.
Notice how the clue I'm objecting to (and I'm guessing they negged on) is before the St. Andrew's feast day clue.
Well, to be honest, Aidan mixed up Laetari Sunday with Gaudete Sunday, and I'm a nonpracticing heretic, but in theory, you're right.

EDIT: So as to keep this in perspective, I doubt this changed the results of any important games, let alone the actual championship. Kudos to PACE for a generally good set of appropriate difficulty.
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