Discussion

Old college threads.
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Discussion

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:07 pm

Lets get this started. Discuss away.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Nine-Tenths Ideas » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:10 pm

There were lots of typos and incorrect answers [eg, identifying Alan Greenspan as Milton Friedman]. This was more noticeable than it has been at other tournaments.
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Re: Discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:38 pm

Isaacbh wrote:There were lots of typos and incorrect answers [eg, identifying Alan Greenspan as Milton Friedman]. This was more noticeable than it has been at other tournaments.
Yeah, this was the biggest problem with the set. As a moderator, I had to slow down regularly to untangle some of the worse sentences.

I know this is a perennial complaint, but it seemed like there were a bunch of early clues that were either too easy or guessable. "This early 20th century Italian art movement had a manifesto and loved airplanes...", "This people made a bunch of human sacrifices to restore their sun god...," "This contemporary of Wang Wei...," and the like. I realize that one of this tournament's goals was to keep difficulty in check, but on those questions, anyone who knew what the answer line was could lateral the answer very early, which is a bad situation at any level of difficulty.

It also seemed like secondary literature clues ("One biography of this man...," "One novel about this event...," or "One critic of this novel...,") seemed to appear more frequently in this set than is usual. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but was this intentional? I'd like to hear the editors' perspectives on those clues.

I do think that this tournament (usually) did a pretty good job of keeping difficulty down, and it did include a few exciting tossups (like the one on "dragons" in art). It was OK on the whole, but it desperately needed polishing. I suspect that a number of otherwise-good questions frustrated players with their grammatical construction.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:56 pm

There were three first-clue giveaways that I noticed: Thomas Jefferson, William James, and Henry VIII.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:59 pm

Hey I'll briefly respond to some of Matt's comments.

I know that as someone who finds it extremely frustrating that I don't remember every single little leadin to books I've read more than once or paintings that I have seen numerous times, its frustrating when people beat you to it. That's why I tried to use clues like that stay with you longer like the Ivan Morris study rather than just "ho ho, did you know that for about ten pages of the 1000 of the Tale of Genji, they go on a deer hunt?!?!"

I tried to do the same thing with Li Po. It's pretty obvious that its a Chinese poet, but I figured by mentioning Wang Wei, those who know Wang is can defintively knock it into a Tang poet, so its more of a context clue. But the things a lot of people i figure will know about Li Po are the facts that Li Po liked Taoism, and Tu Fu Confucianism, and that chances are if you've read a Li Po poem, you just read about the moon. The other tossups off the top of my head that I can think of using clues that aren't just "one character kissed a donkey in this work" entirely are the Seven Against Thebes tossup and the Pindar tossups - again for the same reasons. Hopefully that makes sense.

Oh, and I just found Salman Rushdie's criticism of Foucault's Pendulum hilarious, which is why it was a bonus leadin. Usually the stuff that people have to say about a particular topic is pretty hilarious if you look hard enough, so that's why I use them in that case as well

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Re: Discussion

Post by Rufous-capped Thornbill » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:04 pm

Morraine Man wrote:There were three first-clue giveaways that I noticed: Thomas Jefferson, William James, and Henry VIII.
Noticed this as well.

Also, what was up with that question on "Mesopotamia" or "Assyria" or "Babylon" or whatever it was?
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Re: Discussion

Post by jonah » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:12 pm

There seemed to be a lot of missing alternative answers. In fact, just looking at packet 1, there were two alternatives missing that I personally gave, forcing the moderator I had for that round to either assume I knew what I was talking about or rely on his own knowledge, neither of which should have to happen. (Those were Peisakh for Passover and the full name of the Moho discontinuity, Mohorovicic.) I've heard from several moderators that there were several other situations like that. It's just sloppy question-writing to omit those; don't do it.
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Re: Discussion

Post by The Toad to Wigan Pier » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:28 pm

Ike wrote:Hey I'll briefly respond to some of Matt's comments.

I know that as someone who finds it extremely frustrating that I don't remember every single little leadin to books I've read more than once or paintings that I have seen numerous times, its frustrating when people beat you to it. That's why I tried to use clues like that stay with you longer like the Ivan Morris study rather than just "ho ho, did you know that for about ten pages of the 1000 of the Tale of Genji, they go on a deer hunt?!?!"
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The funny thing is I just read (like a week and a half ago) most of the Tale of Genji for a classical Japanese literature class and I was beat to that tossup because the tossup used a lot of clues that didn't benefit people who have read it over people who know quizbowl stuff about it.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:28 pm

Well yeah, there's that thread I started about the copy-editing. I really wish I could give examples, but I'd have to reread the set / hear it again.

Besides that, there were a few other weird/stupid things. Ignoring the ones posted about already and the general trend of things being fraudable for experienced collegiate novice with a good grasp of the canon:

-In general, the biology tossups seemed too hard. Sorry, Eric - you've been learning really hard things about cardiology and cancer research; the vast majority of college players haven't been, and the end results were bio tossups that were near-impossible to power and a seeming lack of basic coverage (fewer organelles, cycles, ecology things) in exchange for listing more molecules. The bonuses seemed better at the time, but I don't know. Maybe seeing the set of bio answers for the tournament would help jog my memory or disprove my general perceptions.
-The Talleyrand tossup seemed pretty bad in that his Napoleonic-era "successes" are pretty easily attributed to (and pretty misleading towards and answer of) Napoleon. Take a look at that to see if the clues can more specifically refer to what Talleyrand, personally, did.
-What is Dark Knight of the Soul, and what is it doing in this tournament?
-Try not to mix FF13 clues into academic bonuses. I don't remember the specific context, but it seemed really dumb at the time.
-Naming encyclicals is generally a hard thing to do, and Humanae vitae or whatever simply isn't famous enough to justify a bonus part of its own. (Some examples of Church decrees that could get bonus parted, for reference: the ones from Constance, Ineffabilis Deus, and maybe Regnans in Excelsis?)
-Daniel Berenson claims Charles VIII was "The Affable," not "The Victorious" (an honor which goes to his father, Charles VII). So that bonus part had clues for
-The Grant Wood painting is called "Daughters of Revolution"; it's inspired by, but not named for, the "Daughters of the American Revolution" in the answer line.
-Props to whoever wrote the Bar Mitzvah tossup, but it got easy fast. "This ostensibly Jewish event is succeeded by a party in which..." is a giveaway on its own, so maybe information about the chair-lifting (and perhaps candy-throwing) should precede, rather than succeed, the fact that they're associated with parties.
-I defer to physicists to complain about this, but are the three dudes who proposed electroweak theory important enough that physicists know one of their three names? I doubt it.

Most of these should be fixable by the time of the impending mirrors, I hope.

Also, what was the Thomas Jefferson leadin again? I don't remember it, though the other two (squirrel running around tree, Thomas Cromwell) were pretty egregious.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:35 pm

Morraine Man wrote:Thomas Jefferson
As flattering as it is to be able to buzzer race with Chris Ray on something, (although actually frustrating because I couldn't win!) I also felt that that first clue was too easy. William James and Henry VIII were also first-lined in our rooms. These topics are certainly appropriate for this difficulty, but if, as stated by someone somewhere, this tournament's early clues are meant to be challenging to good teams, then these questions failed in that regard.
Inkana7 wrote:Also, what was up with that question on "Mesopotamia" ... ?
My personal opinion is that this question was ill-advised. This might be due to my neg on the description of Ashurbanipal's library with "Assyria." I can't remember what specific noun the question was asking for, but I was led to believe it was asking for a polity of some sort. (Although the noun used was not "polity," I think.)(EDIT: On further reflection, a prompt on things like "Assyria" or "Akkad" or other smaller mentioned entities would have been nice.)

EDIT: Matt, the first clue for Jefferson was his quote, "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." I'm not sure how much of the quote was used, because it wasn't finished in our room.
Last edited by Duncan Idaho on Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:37 pm

RyuAqua wrote:-Naming encyclicals is generally a hard thing to do, and Humanae vitae
I've actually read references to Humanae Vitae in recent news articles about various contraception, etc. issues (perhaps it was mentioned when they were discussing the guy who just won the Nobel Prize for inventing in vitro fertilization?), so I'm not sure if it's excessively hard.
RyuAqua wrote:Also, what was the Thomas Jefferson leadin again?
"The tree of liberty needs to be watered with the blood of patriots"
Inkana7 wrote:Also, what was up with that question on "Mesopotamia" ... ?
Yeah, I buzzed with "Babylon" on the description of Nebuchadnezzar and got reverse prompted; I think I said "The Middle East" and got negged.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:54 pm

RyuAqua wrote:-In general, the biology tossups seemed too hard... the end results were bio tossups that were near-impossible to power and a seeming lack of basic coverage (fewer organelles, cycles, ecology things) in exchange for listing more molecules. The bonuses seemed better at the time, but I don't know. Maybe seeing the set of bio answers for the tournament would help jog my memory or disprove my general perceptions.
Initially, I thought the bio bonuses were difficult, but upon reviewing my notes, it seems that our team could get 10 points (on average) for each, which is probably all we deserve. I agree on the topic of some topics getting little coverage.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Wed Oct 06, 2010 8:07 pm

Charbroil wrote: I've actually read references to Humanae Vitae in recent news articles about various contraception, etc. issues (perhaps it was mentioned when they were discussing the guy who just won the Nobel Prize for inventing in vitro fertilization?), so I'm not sure if it's excessively hard.
.
There's a difference between "the doctrine inside this encyclical comes up a lot" and "the two-word Latin name of this encyclical comes up a lot".
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Re: Discussion

Post by Cody » Wed Oct 06, 2010 8:25 pm

Who in the world thought it was a good idea to have a bonus on Matt and Kim, Bacardi and Cuba Libre. I haven't even seen one of those commercials since the summer of 2009! http://www.google.com/trends?q=matt+and+kim See that biggest spike! This bonus' hard part (at least I hope that was the hard part!) seems pretty impossible (and yes, I know who Matt and Kim are). Cuba Libre also seems like a pretty impossible hard part for anyone who doesn't drink it, but I'll defer to those who actually drink alcohol here.

HO should have been promptable for pendulum (Round 4). Vitamin B3 should have been acceptable for Niacin (extra TU).

The EKG tossup was really transparent (Round 4). The lungs tossup included edema and vasculature in the first/second line (Round 11).

Also, at Jonah, my original copy of the packets has Mohorovicic included as an alternate answer for that question.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Susan » Wed Oct 06, 2010 8:34 pm

Morraine Man wrote:
Charbroil wrote: I've actually read references to Humanae Vitae in recent news articles about various contraception, etc. issues (perhaps it was mentioned when they were discussing the guy who just won the Nobel Prize for inventing in vitro fertilization?), so I'm not sure if it's excessively hard.
.
There's a difference between "the doctrine inside this encyclical comes up a lot" and "the two-word Latin name of this encyclical comes up a lot".
The two-word Latin name of this encyclical comes up a lot. Certainly I heard WAY more about Humanae Vitae in my education, news-reading, church-going, etc. than any other encyclical by a long shot*. By my lights it's clearly more famous than the others that Matt mentioned (and for me Ineffabilis Deus is also much more famous than the other two).

Not having played EFT, I don't know whether this was a tossup on Humanae Vitae (which seems too hard; I don't think there's any encyclical that I consider an "easy answer") or a bonus part (which I would think was fine).

*I'm Catholic; to get a different perspective, I asked my godless heathen of a husband what he thought the most famous encyclical was and he said Rerum Novarum, but that Humanae Vitae was the other one he thought he should have been able to come up with.
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Re: Discussion

Post by jonah » Wed Oct 06, 2010 8:44 pm

SirT wrote:Also, at Jonah, my original copy of the packets has Mohorovicic included as an alternate answer for that question.
Weird. The packets I got from Charles Martin lacks that.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Wed Oct 06, 2010 9:14 pm

Oh yeah, the tree of liberty thing. That quote gets thrown around a lot these days.

As for Humanae Vitae being really famous to Catholics, welp, this may be a case of mistaken "i-dont-know-it-so-its-impossible" on my part. It's certainly quizbowled much less frequently than it seems to be discussed in the REAL WORLD. In response to Susan: it was the ostensible middle part in a Pope John Paul II bonus.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Broad-tailed Grassbird » Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:12 pm

RyuAqua wrote:
-In general, the biology tossups seemed too hard. Sorry, Eric - you've been learning really hard things about cardiology and cancer research; the vast majority of college players haven't been, and the end results were bio tossups that were near-impossible to power and a seeming lack of basic coverage (fewer organelles, cycles, ecology things) in exchange for listing more molecules. The bonuses seemed better at the time, but I don't know. Maybe seeing the set of bio answers for the tournament would help jog my memory or disprove my general perceptions.

I'm going to conditionally disagree on this point. I thought the bio tossups were fine for EFT (difficulty-wise), not sure on the subject matter, I'll have to see the set and jog my memory though.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:52 pm

Hey I'll respond mostly to trends in my writing worth discussing, but I won't discuss much individual questions, as I think the value of that is quite limited, if you point out something really egregious, I'll go ahead and fix it in the answer doc, unless you specifically ask me to discuss it for whatever reason.

FFXIII is trash. I'm a staunch advocate of removing trash from any tournament, so I wrote an academic bonus to replace trash. I'm a really big fan of doing just that until its kosher to write a quizbowl tournament without trash. I wish I did a lot more things of that sort, but I think my co-writers wouldn't be too pleased.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ringil » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:03 pm

I thought this set had a number of questions that were very vague in what they were going for. I thought this was a major problem. The examples that spring to mind for me are the Tokugawa shogunate tossup and (Kurtis mentioned this to me) the Hamlet tossup.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Unicolored Jay » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:20 pm

Ringil wrote:I thought this set had a number of questions that were very vague in what they were going for. I thought this was a major problem. The examples that spring to mind for me are the Tokugawa shogunate tossup and (Kurtis mentioned this to me) the Hamlet tossup.
Yeah the Hamlet tossup and several others were weird like that. I could have powered it if I had known what they were looking for because I did remember a line from the play that the tossup mentioned.

There was a tossup that was about something around the lines of a flotilla getting attacked by Israel or something like that? It was rather weird.

Lastly, how many people negged Seven Against Thebes with Antigone? I did due to similar plot lines between the two works, so if I could get the leadins and early clues used in that tossup it would be great.

And yeah every other biology tossup was on some protein. Seafloor spreading was rather transparent too since it mentioned convection currents and possibly magnetic strips in power.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:21 pm

SirT wrote:The EKG tossup was really transparent (Round 4).
Not to continue (too much) the trend of complaining about individual questions, but I sort of agree with this. On a more positive note, I liked the seafloor spreading tossup.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:32 pm

5. One character with this name attends the University of the Dead where he is pelted by books thrown by ghosts of dead philosophers in a Heinrich Muller work. Another character with this name appears in Act I and from below the stage asks figures to repeatedly swear, and he was killed with a mysterious substance called Hebonna. That character's son with this name calls another character a fishmonger and stabs through an arras killing him. That character delivers a speech about "too, too sullied flesh" and inserts some lines to a performance of "The Murder of Gonzago" to test the conscience of Gertrude's husband Claudius.. For 10 points, name this Shakespeare character that at pondered "To be or not to be."
ANSWER: Hamlet

15. At one point in this work, one character tells how characters slaughtered a bull over a black shield, and dipped their hands in its blood in honor of Mars, Enyo and Fear. This play begins with one character learning about a surprise attack during nighttime from a seer. The title characters never speak any lines on stage and it forms a trilogy with its author's Laius and Oedipus. This drama ends with a herald telling a woman not to disobey the newly passed law, but she insists that she will bury her brother. Its cast includes an unnamed spy, Ismene, Antigone, and her brother Eteocles. For 10 points, name this play by Aeschylus whose titular group includes Amphiaraus and Adrastus.
ANSWER: Seven Against Thebes

These are non non-copy edited versions.
Edit: Oh and it should totally be Heiner Muller
So while we're at it, if you want a tossup posted, post here.
Last edited by Ike on Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:58 pm

(Sorry for multiple posts, but I've finally gone through all my notes.) I'm a little uncertain about Diwali's placement in this supposedly easier tournament. The tossup on the Compromise of 1850 confused me because it was referred to as "this bill," despite the fact that it was a bundle of acts. However, I liked the tossup on histories of Britain and Jiang Qing's inclusion as a bonus's hard part, and I thought that the tossup on Hu Jintao was a cool idea.

Jasper, one of our players also negged Seven Against Thebes with Antigone, but I think that was through carelessness, because that happened the day before in practice as well.
Ike, could you post the tossup on Mesopotamia?

EDIT: words
Last edited by Duncan Idaho on Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:59 pm

The Israel/Gaza flotilla blockade was an important piece of recent world history, so I hope there's no objection to it being asked about. I'm also not sure on the "Hamlet" tossup was vague--it specified really quickly it wanted a name, although looking at it, it seems to bounce from talking about father Hamlet and son Hamlet a bit too quickly--perhaps it should have stressed the two had the same name a bit more.
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Re: Discussion

Post by naturalistic phallacy » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:11 am

RyuAqua wrote:Oh yeah, the tree of liberty thing. That quote gets thrown around a lot these days.

As for Humanae Vitae being really famous to Catholics, welp, this may be a case of mistaken "i-dont-know-it-so-its-impossible" on my part. It's certainly quizbowled much less frequently than it seems to be discussed in the REAL WORLD. In response to Susan: it was the ostensible middle part in a Pope John Paul II bonus.
I think it was supposed to be the hard part of the bonus? Could someone post this just for confirmation? I will also second everything Susan said regarding Humanae Vitae being incredibly important and influential within Catholic theology. It was a huge deal (since it solidified the Church's position on birth control etc...), and I was very happy to see it come up. (To be clear, I went to Catholic schools for almost 12 years).
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Re: Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:15 am

What exactly is the complaint about Diwali?

I think I've mentioned this to Ike and possibly others before, but the Thoth tossup was a huge hose for Set--the latter is the far more famous rider of the solar barque (with Ra) and fighter of Apep. Also, the Mesopotamia tossup was (as has been mentioned) unconscionably awful--I buzzed on the first clue, about a ruler from "this place" being found floating down a stream in a reed basket (true of Sargon the Great) with "Akkad" and was promptly negged for my troubles.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:16 am

Among this pope’s encyclicals included Evangelium Vitae, and he also coined the phrase “culture of death” during a trip to America. FTPE:
[10] Name this immediate predecessor of Benedict XVI, who also apologized for the Catholic Church’s persecution of Galileo and the church’s silence during the Holocaust.
ANSWER: John Paul II or Karol Jozef Wojtyla
[10] This much earlier encyclical, passed in 1968 by Paul VI, is the basis of the Church’s controversial stance on contraception and abortion, and stated that accepting birth control would lower moral standards. The rhythm method is ok though.
ANSWER: Humanae Vitae
[10] This church council, convened from 1962 to 1965, produced the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church and the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, among several other landmark documents.
ANSWER: Vatican II or Second Vatican Council
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Re: Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:17 am

Ike wrote:Among this pope’s encyclicals included Evangelium Vitae, and he also coined the phrase “culture of death” during a trip to America. FTPE:
[10] Name this immediate predecessor of Benedict XVI, who also apologized for the Catholic Church’s persecution of Galileo and the church’s silence during the Holocaust.
ANSWER: John Paul II or Karol Jozef Wojtyla
[10] This much earlier encyclical, passed in 1968 by Paul VI, is the basis of the Church’s controversial stance on contraception and abortion, and stated that accepting birth control would lower moral standards. The rhythm method is ok though.
ANSWER: Humanae Vitae
[10] This church council, convened from 1962 to 1965, produced the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church and the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, among several other landmark documents.
ANSWER: Vatican II or Second Vatican Council
Yeah, HV is a fine hard part here--important and influential and all that.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:29 am

Ukonvasara wrote:
Ike wrote:Among this pope’s encyclicals included Evangelium Vitae, and he also coined the phrase “culture of death” during a trip to America. FTPE:
[10] Name this immediate predecessor of Benedict XVI, who also apologized for the Catholic Church’s persecution of Galileo and the church’s silence during the Holocaust.
ANSWER: John Paul II or Karol Jozef Wojtyla
[10] This much earlier encyclical, passed in 1968 by Paul VI, is the basis of the Church’s controversial stance on contraception and abortion, and stated that accepting birth control would lower moral standards. The rhythm method is ok though.
ANSWER: Humanae Vitae
[10] This church council, convened from 1962 to 1965, produced the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church and the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, among several other landmark documents.
ANSWER: Vatican II or Second Vatican Council
Yeah, HV is a fine hard part here--important and influential and all that.
Conceded.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:30 am

9. One famous ruler from this place was found floating down a river in a reed basket much like Moses. Another famous ruler over this place had to take a seven year break due to a mysterious disease that is now thought to be lycanthropy. Another ruler over this place collected 30,000 tablets in his palace at Ninevah. Those rulers are Sargon the Great, Nebuchadnezzar II, and Ashurbanipal respectively. Its history was recorded on cuneiform blocks and this “cradle of world civilization” is responsible for the earliest written records and the first law code. For 10 points, what is this place that literally translates as “the land between two rivers” and is located between the Tigris and Euphrates?
ANSWER: Mesopotamia
[Christ this needs to be fixed]

Hey so not to be cynical, but I'm hoping you guys would have thought would have definitely fixed this if I had caught it in time, and most certainly its not being used at mirror sites.

EDIT: Edited in a clause that was missing.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Nicklausse/Muse » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:38 am

Matt Jackson wrote:Props to whoever wrote the Bar Mitzvah tossup, but it got easy fast. "This ostensibly Jewish event is succeeded by a party in which..." is a giveaway on its own, so maybe information about the chair-lifting (and perhaps candy-throwing) should precede, rather than succeed, the fact that they're associated with parties.
This was originally a tossup on "bat mitzvah" and did not have clues about chair-lifting.

I also wrote the Tale of Genji tossup, but I get the impression some of the clues were changed - here is the original:
One chapter in this novel is blank, suggesting a character’s death; the chapter is titled “Hidden in the Clouds.” Earlier, at a rehearsal, that character recites Chinese poetry and dances alongside his brother-in-law; he is witnessed by his stepmother, with whom he is having an affair and who resembles his mother. Several women are possessed by the protagonist’s mistress Rokujo, including Yugao and Aoi, but the most important love interest, initially the title character’s pre-teen ward, shares her name with the author. For 10 points, name this novel about the love affairs of the title prince, a work of Murasaki Shikibu.
ANSWER: The Tale of Genji [or Genji monogatari]
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:43 am

Ukonvasara wrote:What exactly is the complaint about Diwali?
I thought it was a little difficult for a tossup at a tournament of lower difficulty. This might be untrue due to the high number of Indians in quizbowl, or untrue for any other number of reasons, but it was my opinion.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:47 am

Ike wrote:FFXIII is trash. I'm a staunch advocate of removing trash from any tournament, so I wrote an academic bonus to replace trash. I'm a really big fan of doing just that until its kosher to write a quizbowl tournament without trash. I wish I did a lot more things of that sort, but I think my co-writers wouldn't be too pleased.
Yeah I was just about to post about this. Occasionally for EFT I'll write a bonus about trash references to academic things, and its always in the trash distro.

Also, Matt and Jasper, I feel compelled to respond to your comments on the biology. None of these answer choices are out of place at an easy tournament, and I purposefully made the powermarking extremely generous. Let me list them for you:

Telomeres - Tossup had G-quadruplexes, shelterin, Flo-FISH, and SIR2/3/4 in power, and "end-replication problem" just out of power (which is where Linna buzzed in my room). I added a clue about Facio-scapulo-humeral dystrophy because its interesting. Ming would have powered it on shelterin, and I've gotten telomere tossups on "G-quadruplexes" several times before, so this seems fair.

Parkinsons Disease - Alpha-synuclein is in power, Dardarin is in power (brand spanking new), and clues about DOPA (which Mehdi recognized but couldn't buzz on) are in power; Lewy bodies and substantia nigra is just outside of power. Everyone buzzes on substantia nigra.

Serotonin - 2A receptors, LSD, enterochromaffin cells, raphe nucleus are all in power, and all come up in intro courses. Zoloft and other SSRIs are outside of power.

Cholesterol - This one had 8 lines of power. Within power included things like SREBP, HMG-CoA (which is where it was powered in my room by someone on Columbia), chylomicrons, and a description of LDL. Most of those things come up in intro biochemistry, and I think rewarding that knowledge is valid for power. Statins show up right after power, and those are common knowledge.

Collagen - This is the one bio tossup not by me (Aaron wrote it). Alport's syndrome is in the first line, and obviously in power, and osteogenesis imperfecta is also in power. I wouldn't have made this tossup nearly this generous (I'd still put it in power). Mehdi powered it on Alport's syndrome.

Antibodies - I like this one. As far as I know Bruton's Tyrosine Kinase is brand new to quizbowl, but is important. The thing about Ig-like domains in titin and cell adhesion molecules is something that's taught in introductory cell biology classes, as is the fact that they're divided into Fc and Fab fragments. Light and heavy chains are just out of power, which is probably where it should be.

Topoisomerase - The strand-passage mechanism is all within power, and this comes up both in questions on this and in introductory biochemistry classes. DNA gyrase is also in power.

EKG - This was me trying to be innovative. I can see how this can get transparent around the point where I start listing leads, but before that I doubt that anyone who didn't know anything about the heart would get it.

Splicing - Two transesterifications is in power, cryptic sites are in power, and components of the spliceosome is in power. These are all things that come up in intro genetics and biochem. Seems fair to me.

C Elegans - The fact that Andrew Fire discovered RNAi in C Elegans is among the most famous things about C Elegans. Its life cycle was in power too.

Petals - Dicots having four or five is right in power.

Miller-Urey experiment - You powered this.

Adaptive Radiation - This is my token hard tossup. Power was available almost until the very end. And the example about cichlids in Lake Victoria is in Campbells.

Rhodopsin - This was actually a chemistry tossup, but I'll put it here. The leadin about optogenetics is super important, and was all in power. The stuff about bacteriorhodopsin was also in power. Cyclic GMP was the last word of power, and transducin and retinal were right outside of power, where they should be.

Lungs - Other organs can have edema, and I'm pretty sure the clues were specific. If you're buzzing on edema, I'm fine with that.

So there were exactly 4 tossups (rhodopsin, topoisomerase, antibodies, and collagen) on proteins, which is far from every other question. I don't see the need to have questions on biochemical cycles or organelles in every set; it so happened that with this particular set I didn't toss up any. I didn't see the need to, partly because I didn't see more interesting new clues to write about for mitochondria or peroxisomes, and partly because I just didn't think of it. And how many times can I toss up the Krebs cycle, glycolysis, and the Calvin cycle (which are the only ones that can come up in this set)? I mean, I would if I found cool new clues for it (in fact I think I've tossed up about 1/3 of the aforementioned answers before), but I'm not even sure they really exist anymore. And I don't think there's anything wrong with me putting "hard things about cardiology and cancer" in the leadins for tossups when I still make them on things that aren't out of place at EFT and keep the tossups powerable. My only regret is that cisplatin came up too much.

More later if I feel like it. But I'll stand by almost every science question in this set as appropriate with interesting clues.


EDIT: Woah I almost missed this:
RyuAqua wrote:-I defer to physicists to complain about this, but are the three dudes who proposed electroweak theory important enough that physicists know one of their three names? I doubt it.
Wrong.
Last edited by Sima Guang Hater on Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Broad-tailed Grassbird » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:52 am

Ben Cole wrote:
Ukonvasara wrote:What exactly is the complaint about Diwali?
I thought it was a little difficult for a tossup at a tournament of lower difficulty. This might be untrue due to the high number of Indians in quizbowl, or untrue for any other number of reasons, but it was my opinion.
admittedly i got this question and am indian, but I have no doubt that the most well-known indian holiday is fair game for the ACF Novice tournament, let alone EFT. For religion, there aren't many easier eastern topics.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Broad-tailed Grassbird » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:01 am

on the bio q's. Only topoisomerase is a little bit too tough. Telomeres maybe, I can't really say because I got it off the nobel prize of all things, but regardless if comes up in freshman bio so it's not that big of a deal. C elegans and petals were great tossups, imo.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Auroni » Thu Oct 07, 2010 3:44 am

It was sort of frustrating to not 30 the Paz bonus because we didn't produce the word "poplars," even after just managing to eke out "Sun Stone" off not-particularly memorable lines.

The tossup on Fugard started discussing the plays of his relatives, which was incredibly unnecessary and difficult. There were tossups on Maimonides, gravity waves, and the Castle of Otranto, which I felt was too tough for the set. I also question the answer choice of Whorf, which was fairly difficult and seemed to be indistinguishable for most people from Sapir until the latter was mentioned. Also, I had some issues with that question on "dragons" in art. At least a clue or two seemed to refer to generic sea monsters, which was definitely the case for the monster that shows up in Roger Freeing Angelica (where I buzzed, unwisely, with "hippogriffs" since "sea monsters" sounded improbable and I had no idea what was going on).

I'm sorry for going over only specifics here, but most of the general stuff has been said already. I've already mentioned this to others, but I thought that the difficulty of the majority of the questions at this tournament was spot on and that this should be retained for future iterations of this tournament.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:00 am

every time i refresh i have a new name wrote:It was sort of frustrating to not 30 the Paz bonus because we didn't produce the word "poplars," even after just managing to eke out "Sun Stone" off not-particularly memorable lines.
Here are the first two lines of "Sun Stone":
willow of crystal, a poplar of water,
a pillar of fountain by the wind drawn over,

Here is the bonus part:
15. The speaker of this poem claims "I go among your body as among the world" and tells the addressee "you are a city by the light divided" and it mentions a "willow of crystal" in the beginning. For 10 points each,
[10] Identify this poem whose other images include "a pillar of fountain by the wind drawn over."

So basically, you could get the middle part of this bonus by reading the first two lines of the poem and recognizing their source; you could get the hard part by remembering that the tree's a poplar. I guess the inclusion of the two harder lines (though they're both quite memorable, at least for this person-who's-read-the-poem-twice) could totally throw you off somehow? But when the first two lines (which are repeated wholesale later on) are included, "not-particularly memorable" really seems thin.

EDIT: after looking at the internet, it seems the second quote splices together
you are a city by the sea assaulted,
you are a rampart by the light divided
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Re: Discussion

Post by Unicolored Jay » Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:07 am

@Eric: Okay, I was just going off the feeling that the answers seemed slanted more than normal towards proteins and molecules. Biochem isn't exactly my best subject as of now so that's probably why I felt it was hard (such as something like topoisomerase). I definitely didn't feel things like C. elegans was hard.

As for Whorf, I believe he did work with the Nahuatl and Hopi, which was rather significant, and with the latter, he claimed there was no sense of time in their language or something like that. So he shouldn't be too hard to identify if you know other stuff he did.

EDIT: reasoning error
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Re: Discussion

Post by theMoMA » Thu Oct 07, 2010 11:09 am

I believe the EKG tossup had the word "echo" somewhere in the first couple lines. I don't know if I'm considered someone who "knows anything about the heart" or not, but that tossup seemed really easy to figure out right away.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Auroni » Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:41 pm

Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:
every time i refresh i have a new name wrote:It was sort of frustrating to not 30 the Paz bonus because we didn't produce the word "poplars," even after just managing to eke out "Sun Stone" off not-particularly memorable lines.
Here are the first two lines of "Sun Stone":
willow of crystal, a poplar of water,
a pillar of fountain by the wind drawn over,

Here is the bonus part:
15. The speaker of this poem claims "I go among your body as among the world" and tells the addressee "you are a city by the light divided" and it mentions a "willow of crystal" in the beginning. For 10 points each,
[10] Identify this poem whose other images include "a pillar of fountain by the wind drawn over."

So basically, you could get the middle part of this bonus by reading the first two lines of the poem and recognizing their source; you could get the hard part by remembering that the tree's a poplar. I guess the inclusion of the two harder lines (though they're both quite memorable, at least for this person-who's-read-the-poem-twice) could totally throw you off somehow? But when the first two lines (which are repeated wholesale later on) are included, "not-particularly memorable" really seems thin.

EDIT: after looking at the internet, it seems the second quote splices together
you are a city by the sea assaulted,
you are a rampart by the light divided
I mean, I guess I remembered "Sun Stone" off the very first quote, but it absolutely would not hurt at all to mention that each of its lines corresponds to a day in the Aztec calendar, which is the basic fact that most people know about it. Also, identifying "poplar" seems trivial and tough to do since it's one word in a decently long poem, and since accessibility was the goal everywhere else in this set, this bonus stuck out and should probably be changed before the next iteration of the tournament.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:13 pm

every time i refresh i have a new name wrote:The tossup on Fugard started discussing the plays of his relatives, which was incredibly unnecessary and difficult.
In addition to being kind of stupid, these clues were also basically taken from ACF Fall 2006, so that's...not good.
[...]the Castle of Otranto, which I felt was too tough for the set.
I don't really agree with this--Otranto is both historically important (and influential) as the first gothic novel (and as such is often discussed in classes even when it's not being read), and historically important in that it's been coming up in lower-level quizbowl forever and thus people who've played quizbowl before are at least likely to have heard of it.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:30 pm

theMoMA wrote:I believe the EKG tossup had the word "echo" somewhere in the first couple lines. I don't know if I'm considered someone who "knows anything about the heart" or not, but that tossup seemed really easy to figure out right away.
Your point is well-taken; I'll take out the word echo.
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Re: Discussion

Post by cvdwightw » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:34 pm

theMoMA wrote:I believe the EKG tossup had the word "echo" somewhere in the first couple lines. I don't know if I'm considered someone who "knows anything about the heart" or not, but that tossup seemed really easy to figure out right away.
Echocardiography is much, much different from an EKG, although I believe an echocardiogram simultaneously uses a three-lead EKG. I figured out what was going on in the first line or so but couldn't tell what was really wanted until Wolff-Parkinson-White.

I was excited to see the deep-brain stimulation clue in the Parkinson's tossup and the Raphe nuclei in the serotonin tossup - both of these are legitimate things you hear about in any sort of neuroscience class that haven't entered all the way into the canon yet.

I agree with Auroni that Whorf turned into a binary bowl tossup, and would have been much happier seeing the answer be the actual Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, which I think is no more difficult for people who aren't reflex buzzing off one guy's name with the other guy.

I felt like the square planar tossup and a couple of other chemistry questions I can't remember right now were interesting ideas to incorporate things that don't regularly show up, but I didn't feel like any of them really succeeded. I'm still not convinced there's a good way to write on any kind of electron geometry. My other substantive comment is that while the optogenetics clue may be super-important, I'm not sure you want to clue in players that early that "this is a protein found in the eye." Basically I wasn't buzzing there because I figured that given how early the clue was, it was some protein that wasn't just in the eye.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:42 pm

I'm not sure what to think about this idea of "changing hard bonus parts" before the next iteration of tournaments. While obviously grammar and incorrect clues need to be addressed (and perhaps outright hoses, like the Mesopotamia one), I don't really see the point of, say, making that Paz part easier. Maybe it was a bad idea, maybe not, but as long as it's accurate and not a hose, I don't like arbitrarily making these decisions to change tournaments.

I also think that the idea of what should be tossed up (or asked about in a bonus part), what shouldn't, while fun, tends to end up a bit unsatisfying for me. In every tournament, there are a few questions here and there that dance around the edges of the intended difficulty. I think that's perfectly fine. Take three things bandied about as "too hard" in this thread:

Dark Knight of the Soul, Humanae vitae, Diwali

I thought Diwali was a fine tossup idea. It comes up in quizbowl a decent amount and I was familiar with it outside of quizbowl. Now, certainly, some players might not, but now they are exposed to it. It's a fine teachable moment on a pretty easy to learn about concept.

Humanae vitae I thought was a good hard part. I'm not saying it needs to come up all the time, but it's an interesting, important, influential, and slightly difficult difficult bonus part. Again, fine with me (this strikes me as the type of hard bonus part that you will either know or not as opposed to just absorbing it through quizbowl knowledge).

I thought Dark Knight of the Soul was really hard, especially in that bonus structure. While I think we can safely note that it was too hard (unless others disagree), I don't want to castigate the writers for producing such a question. In an attempt to find interesting, notable things to write about (and certainly it seemed interesting and notable), writers will always produce some questions that do not play well. That's the name of the game, and I would hate to sacrifice creativity in the future just because a few questions here and there didn't work (I guess I'm assuming this one didn't work, which could be way wrong). I'm not advocating some sort of free wheeling, write on whatever the hell you want structure in tournaments, but since nobody is suggesting EFT did that in general, I have no problem with a few questions here and there being objected too as too hard.
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Re: Discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:02 pm

I would have gotten "dark night of the soul" because of St. Anselm's "Christian Spirituality" class, but I wouldn't have gotten the next part on St. John of the Cross. The bonus was probably too hard for EFT, but I'd be very excited to see it at, say, Regionals.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Frater Taciturnus » Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:04 pm

Cheynem wrote:Dark Knight of the Soul
Finally a chance to ask about my favorite book of philosophy!

Judy Sucks a Lemon for Breakfast wrote: There was a tossup that was about something around the lines of a flotilla getting attacked by Israel or something like that? It was rather weird.
Current Events: It's still a thing. I mean, this was a pretty well known and well covereed incident from just a few months ago. I actually enjoyed this tossup.
Lastly, how many people negged Seven Against Thebes with Antigone? I did due to similar plot lines between the two works, so if I could get the leadins and early clues used in that tossup it would be great.
I'm pretty sure I avoided negging with that when I heard mentions of "the title group" what seemed like fairly early.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Ike » Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:50 pm

Guys, its Dark Night of the Soul - sorry it really irks me that we are all so good at thinking that it's way to hard for a tournament, but no one knows what the title is (and perhaps a lot more.) For what its worth, It was thirtied in my room, and I heard other compliments about it, but I haven't heard anyone say to me that bonus is downright too hard until the thread.

The other thing I want to mention briefly is that I certainly didn't consult packet archives for clues.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Duncan Idaho » Thu Oct 07, 2010 3:01 pm

every time i refresh i have a new name wrote: I also question the answer choice of Whorf, which was fairly difficult and seemed to be indistinguishable for most people from Sapir until the latter was mentioned.
Although it might have been a better idea to toss up the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Whorf is the one I've heard discussed in psych class and so on. In terms of distinguishing him from Sapir, I believe he did the field work with the Hopi (probably the easiest clue aside from stating the hypothesis) after Sapir had formulated the idea. The question also included that clue about him having worked in fire insurance, which was used in 2009 NSC.
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Re: Discussion

Post by Charbroil » Thu Oct 07, 2010 4:24 pm

On a more general note, am I the only one who thought that there was quite a bit of bonus variability in this set? I figured it was because it was because it was merged with the MCMNT set, but I was just curious as to whether it was a real issue.
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