CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Kyle » Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:44 am

If anybody sees this in time, you should tell your moderators to read tossup 21 rather than tossup 20 in the Bollinger-Jackson packet (which should be scheduled for round 8) because I screwed up and left a repeat in it.

Also, I emailed the packet for the finals to the same four people as before and the new password for that round to the same three people as before.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Mike Bentley » Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:11 pm

Jeff and Bruce went undefeated to win the tournament.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Unicolored Jay » Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:29 pm

Stats for the tournament can be found here:

http://hsquizbowl.org/db/tournaments/10 ... all_games/
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Kyle » Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:49 pm

Congratulations to Jeff and Bruce.

I emailed the packets to George Berry out of habit, but I don't know if that's still the desired method for getting them posted. If you require them more urgently, send me an email and I'll give them to you.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Great Bustard » Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:31 pm

Congratulations to Jeff and Bruce, and thanks to Matt Weiner for inviting me to be the ??? mystery player. Thanks to Mike Bentley for directing, the reading staff, and to Kyle and everyone else who had a hand in the logistics. I had a great time playing this today - minus a geography monstrosity and a jersey shore open, this was my first time actually playing since 2000, and I really enjoyed it. Sorry about leaving with the buzzers before the lit tournament; had I been asked about this in advance it would have been much easier for me to coordinate leaving the systems there, or figure out an alternate solution.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Susan » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:48 pm

Kyle wrote: The packet with the most repeats with other packets was the Gerten-Weinreich packet; consequently, they will get to play on the team of three with Charles Hang.
Were the repeats edited (sorry, "redacted") out of the other packets, or did this team just get to expect that some number of the questions in their packet would be present elsewhere in the tournament?
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Kyle » Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:52 am

Susan wrote:
Kyle wrote: The packet with the most repeats with other packets was the Gerten-Weinreich packet; consequently, they will get to play on the team of three with Charles Hang.
Were the repeats edited (sorry, "redacted") out of the other packets, or did this team just get to expect that some number of the questions in their packet would be present elsewhere in the tournament?
In theory, most teams could figure out which questions in their packet had been cut and then expect those answers to come up later. In practice, I would be absolutely stunned if anybody could benefit from that knowledge over the course of 17 rounds.

On the topic of repeats:

- I believe there were four tossups in total that either had the answer line "Axum" or the answer line "Ethiopia" with Axum in the giveaway.

- Three people chose three different World War II naval battles fought in the waters off of the Philippines.

- Two people submitted a tossup on the 1968 Summer Olympics.

- There were at least three (and maybe four – I can't remember) submitted questions about The History of the Peloponnesian War or about famous texts excerpted in it. Two of the packets responsible for this repeat were the Davis-Ray packet and the Arthur-Hoppes packet, which was fun because when I realized this Bruce had made a joke about how he hoped their packets contained the most repeats (presumably a reference to the fact that both tried to choose really weird answers).
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by The Toad to Wigan Pier » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:08 pm

Kyle wrote:Congratulations to Jeff and Bruce.

I emailed the packets to George Berry out of habit, but I don't know if that's still the desired method for getting them posted. If you require them more urgently, send me an email and I'll give them to you.
http://goo.gl/Nhn7A
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:48 pm

I was expecting this set to confirm many of my most pessimistic theories about quizbowl players. I thought that far fewer teams would actually submit packets on time, and that the set would be riddled with impossible answers, frustrating common-links, and and various other horrors.

I was obviously wrong on the first count, and I think I'm less-than-correct on the second count too. There were a few horrors in this set, including one tossup that is IMO the current frontrunner for Worst Tossup of the 2010's. But for the most part these were good, playable questions. The set was creative in a good way. I think the Ray-Davis and Carson-Seal packets were particularly good at being creative without making me want to face-desk. The Ray-Davis on "AK-47's" was groundbreaking, I thought, and I want to single it out for praise as the best history tossup I've heard in a while.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by mhayes » Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:12 pm

As a former member, I thought the tossup on the A.M.E Church was awesome.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Cheynem » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:44 pm

On the whole, I thought the packets in this set were better than last year's with a few exceptions. Each packet generally had a good mix of standard stuff combined with a few peeps into Polynesian crazytown. Like Bruce, I enjoyed the Ray/Davis and Carson/Seal packets quite a bit; the Adams/Butler, Steinbaum/Bailey, Weiner, and Bentley/Jose packets also had quite a few ideas I liked.

I'm assuming Bruce wrote "Roman men" as a parody of the VCU Open question. I was disappointed it made it into the actual packet.

My only general comment for writers is to try to think of potential alternate answers a bit more when writing questions. I have this problem too sometimes but it becomes a little glaring for some questions (what happens when someone says "Luxor" for "Thebes," for instance).
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Sam » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:58 pm

I agree with what everyone else has said about this turning out better than expected, both from a logistical and question-quality perspective. A grand time was had by all.

One logistical change I would suggest if this happens next year is an earlier final deadline for packets. Obviously a guerrilla tournament doesn't require the lead time for editing, but it was frustrating not knowing how many teams or even how many packets there would be until two days before the tournament. The deadlines for CO proper are distant enough that moving up the history ones shouldn't interfere with people's ability to get a packet in on time, and would allow more time to work out a suitable schedule.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by grapesmoker » Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:30 am

The Ray-Davis on "AK-47's" was groundbreaking, I thought, and I want to single it out for praise as the best history tossup I've heard in a while.
I have no knowledge of the tossup specifics, but the answer line has definitely been used before.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:37 am

grapesmoker wrote:
The Ray-Davis on "AK-47's" was groundbreaking, I thought, and I want to single it out for praise as the best history tossup I've heard in a while.
I have no knowledge of the tossup specifics, but the answer line has definitely been used before.
I also really, really liked that tossup even though I negged with something stupid on the clue before the Hizbollah one.

In general, I really liked this tournament and had a great time playing with the esteemed Mike Cheyne. There were certainly several tossups that dropped clues too early, several stupid answerlines, the Brendan Byrne packet which sounded like a dialup modem connecting to the internet, etc. I don't think it would be helpful to list these, unless people want comments on their packets specifically which I (and other people) would be happy to provide.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Senator_Jay » Wed Jul 25, 2012 10:52 am

I thought this was awesome, getting to play with and against some amazing players in a good location. It definitely made a trip involving over $200 in car repairs and getting stranded in Paw Paw for a day worth it!
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by mhayes » Wed Jul 25, 2012 6:32 pm

The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus wrote: There were certainly several tossups that dropped clues too early, several stupid answerlines, the Brendan Byrne packet which sounded like a dialup modem connecting to the internet, etc. I don't think it would be helpful to list these, unless people want comments on their packets specifically which I (and other people) would be happy to provide.
I sent you a PM about this, but I figured I'd post here too in case others want to weigh in (though I'm not sure if this should go in a separate discussion thread).

I wrote the following tossups for the Hayes/Byrne packet:

Edward Coke
Casimir the Great
Washington's farewell address
Kenmu Restoration
Sargon II
Mutiny on the Bounty
Battle of Lechfeld
Tehran Conference
Anne Hutchinson
Louisiana

Which of these stood out as problematic?
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Cheynem » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:09 pm

Your questions were all right, at least the ones I could judge (Tehran seemed good, so did Sargon II). The occasional problem was that easier clues were dropped too early, like "breadfruit" for Mutiny on the Bounty, "entangling alliances" for Washington's Farewell Address, and making it clear (at least to the people playing the packet) that it was a non-male political dissident in New England for Anne Hutchinson. The weaker questions in that packet were the ones that just came off as vague or lists like Sarbanes-Oxley and Mayor of Detroit.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Auroni » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:49 pm

Cheynem wrote:Your questions were all right, at least the ones I could judge (Tehran seemed good, so did Sargon II). The occasional problem was that easier clues were dropped too early, like "breadfruit" for Mutiny on the Bounty, "entangling alliances" for Washington's Farewell Address, and making it clear (at least to the people playing the packet) that it was a non-male political dissident in New England for Anne Hutchinson. The weaker questions in that packet were the ones that just came off as vague or lists like Sarbanes-Oxley and Mayor of Detroit.
Not to mention the endless use of meaningless quotations as clues.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by DumbJaques » Wed Jul 25, 2012 9:37 pm

Which of these stood out as problematic?
Not really any of them, because I don't remember these questions listing random alphanumeric symbols until arriving at a giveaway (or not!) - look, we all know what the problem with that packet was, and it wasn't those tossups.

While I didn't mind it THAT much (I mean, it's a guerrilla tournament), I will say that the aforementioned packet and a couple hours were pretty annoying. Had I been in contention to win this tournament (read: Playing with Jeff Hoppes), I guess I might have cared more. But I did voice an opinion during one of the rounds that perhaps there needs to be some manner of packet quality assurance if guerrilla history is going to become a regular thing. I'm not sure how you'd effect this, though. Perhaps you could charge people for crappy questions, but that only really works if good writers are sending in crappy questions, and aside from Bruce's lamentable decision to write a parody tossup and the even more lamentable decision to include that tossup in the final 20, I don't think that was the problem.

A more novel solution might be to require people whose writing is known to be suspect to get a sponsor to review and fix their material. Of course, this happening on any significant scale seems totally nuts (and I personally find it a bit totalitarian, if darkly amusing). But given the player pool, it seems like the reality of this event over the past two years really has been 1 or 2 packets with serious problems and the rest coming in without major issues. Perhaps a more palatable way to implement the same basic policy would be to empower the redactor to demand that certain teams submit their packets earlier/demand that teams re-submit shoddy work or find someone else to do it for them. In true Arthurian fashion, since I anticipate neither writing bad tossups nor submitting my stuff prior to a few days before the tournament, I don't really care if this bad thing happens to other people through their own incompetence.*

*If we talk about doing something like this, of course, I think it's paramount to have an exception made for younger/less experienced writers. Or at least send them a rejection email with a smiley face or something.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Kyle » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:11 am

DumbJaques wrote:the even more lamentable decision to include that tossup in the final 20
To be clear, this was not a "decision." I mostly just copied and pasted without reading the questions. Making decisions wasn't part of my job description.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Cheynem » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:52 am

Kyle was elected to lead, not to read.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Kyle » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:51 am

Well, you could try to get somebody to edit this tournament. That just isn't what you did this year or last year.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Cheynem » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:59 am

Oh, I have no problem with it. The fault is in people writing joke tossups to begin with.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:03 am

mhayes wrote:
The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus wrote: I wrote the following tossups for the Hayes/Byrne packet:

Edward Coke
Casimir the Great
Washington's farewell address
Kenmu Restoration
Sargon II
Mutiny on the Bounty
Battle of Lechfeld
Tehran Conference
Anne Hutchinson
Louisiana

Which of these stood out as problematic?
In addition to the stuff Mike listed, the Edward Coke tossup made it really clear it was an English jurist very early. I think all of us were playing Blackstone chicken from the first line.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by mhayes » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:30 pm

Thanks for the solid critiques. So it seems the problems were mostly 1) misplaced clues and 2) the answers being obvious. I'll do my best to remedy these issues for future tournaments.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by DumbJaques » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:42 pm

Kyle wrote:
DumbJaques wrote:the even more lamentable decision to include that tossup in the final 20
To be clear, this was not a "decision." I mostly just copied and pasted without reading the questions. Making decisions wasn't part of my job description.
Apologies - I think I was under the impression that the setup was more like last year, and didn't realize you were just putting stuff together. I do think it'd be nice to find someone to take a (if only slightly) more active role in constructing this event in the future, if only to avoid issues like parody tossups showing up in games.

Though really, you'd like that to not be a problem in the first place.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:49 pm

Has anyone simply considered just replacing this tournament with a housewritten history tournament? There are plenty of historians in quizbowl who could/should/would take up the charge.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:39 pm

I'd be willing to do this if other people would want a me-edited history tournament. I'd probably do it as voluntary packet submission if anything, with details to be announced.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Auroni » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:14 pm

I think this would work best as an edited packet-sub, though someone would have to step up, obviously.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Cheynem » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:19 pm

I like the different feel of submitted packets--maybe like a redactor "plus" (i.e., doesn't change anything unless there are severe quality issues/repeats) would be a way to go?

Although any history event would be cool with me. If I had my way, every tournament would have guerrilla history doubles.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:55 pm

Tees-Exe Line wrote:I'd be willing to do this if other people would want a me-edited history tournament. I'd probably do it as voluntary packet submission if anything, with details to be announced.
I would enjoy this.
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Re: CO History Doubles: 7/22/2012

Post by No Rules Westbrook » Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:01 pm

Yeah, so, I had a fine time at this event and there were lots of entertaining questions. But, in general, the event was pretty rocky because that's just what you get with guerilla. The difference between this event and WELD is pretty much a case study in guerilla vs. central quality control (even though WELD was obviously not a sub tourney).

As Cheyne alludes, there is some charm and variety in not having one person's style overtake the tournament - if you give the reins of this event to Marshall, or to Weiner, or to me, or to Cheyne, or to Bruce - you're going to get a very certain style that repeats and repeats, and you lose the element of randomness/variety that can be entertaining. I'm not sure what the answer is - perhaps you tell one of those editors to only "half-edit" - i.e. fix the really really terrible stuff and just let all the other stuff go through. Easier said than done though.
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