BUZZERFEST: General Discussion

Old college threads.
User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

BUZZERFEST: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:36 pm

Discuss away... I'm particularly interested in discussion of the difficulty (in regards to consistency, and how we might improve it in the future), since I know there were problems with it here.

Remember, there are still two more mirrors (4/25 at Whitman (WA) and 5/8 at UTC).

ALSO: I'd also especially like to hear about the Editors 1 packet (the last round at the Princeton site, don't know when or if it was used at Notre Dame).
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
Mechanical Beasts
Banned Cheater
Posts: 5673
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Sat Mar 27, 2010 10:43 pm

Kunle, could you email me the set? andy.watkins2@gmail.com
Andrew Watkins

User avatar
Not That Kind of Christian!!
Yuna
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 10:36 pm
Location: Manhattan

Re: General Discussion

Post by Not That Kind of Christian!! » Sat Mar 27, 2010 10:44 pm

Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:Kunle, could you email me the set? andy.watkins2@gmail.com
Same here, hkirsch at brandeis then a period edu
Hannah Kirsch
Brandeis University 2010
NYU School of Medicine 2014

"Wow, those Scandinavians completely thorbjorned my hard-earned political capital."

User avatar
MicroEStudent
Rikku
Posts: 462
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by MicroEStudent » Sat Mar 27, 2010 10:49 pm

I'd also like a copy.

jetzzfan@gmail.com
Nathaniel Kane
RIT '09, '11 (BS Microelectronic Engineering, MS Microelectronic Engineering)

Rothlover
Yuna
Posts: 816
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 8:41 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Rothlover » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:07 pm

Dan Passner Brandeis '06 JTS/Columbia '11-'12 Ben Gurion University of the Negev/Columbia '12?

User avatar
Papa's in the House
Tidus
Posts: 594
Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:43 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Papa's in the House » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:19 pm

Well, apparently the Illinois packet was more difficult overall based on PPG/Team and TUPts/TUH at both sites (though the BPts/BHrd seemed to be less of a statistical outlier). There were the usual problems of a few repeats throughout the tournament and it seemed like there were some grammatical errors (based on the body language of the moderators at times) which were also bound to occur. Certain sub-distributions seemed to be slightly overrepresented, but overall, I enjoyed playing this set and I thank Princeton for putting this on. Now it's time to go study up on the things I wrote down.

[derail]
As an aside, perhaps someone could explain to me how exactly geometric Brownian motion relates to the Black-Scholes model. Looking through my two textbooks that go into great detail on this particular model (and mining my personal use of this model for my work), I can't find a single reference to it, but a search through the ACFDB shows that this phrase is in all 3 tossups on the model contained in the database. This is more of a personal curiosity question than anything being wrong with the question itself.
[/derail]
Charles Martin Jr.
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Academic Buzzer Team | President
B.S. in Accountancy, August 2011
B.S. in Finance, August 2011
MAS Program, Class of 2012

DakarKra
Wakka
Posts: 150
Joined: Sat Jun 10, 2006 9:58 pm
Location: Piscataway, New Jersey

Re: General Discussion

Post by DakarKra » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:33 pm

Not That Kind of Christian!! wrote:
Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:Kunle, could you email me the set? andy.watkins2@gmail.com
Same here, hkirsch at brandeis then a period edu
This, please.
Jeremy
Rutgers-New Brunswick

User avatar
Mechanical Beasts
Banned Cheater
Posts: 5673
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 pm

Papa's in the House wrote:[derail]
As an aside, perhaps someone could explain to me how exactly geometric Brownian motion relates to the Black-Scholes model. Looking through my two textbooks that go into great detail on this particular model (and mining my personal use of this model for my work), I can't find a single reference to it, but a search through the ACFDB shows that this phrase is in all 3 tossups on the model contained in the database. This is more of a personal curiosity question than anything being wrong with the question itself.
[/derail]
Black-Scholes assumes the log of price varies like a Wiener process (continuous Brownian motion). Since the log of price varies Brownian, the price varies according to something called "geometric Brownian." This assumption appears quite important if you read the Wiki article! It may also be important in real life, but hey.
Andrew Watkins

User avatar
Papa's in the House
Tidus
Posts: 594
Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:43 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Papa's in the House » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:18 am

Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:This assumption appears quite important if you read the Wiki article!
That's what I thought. Thanks.

[/derail (unless someone asks for me to quote from my textbook(s) on the Black-Scholes(-Merton) Model)]
Charles Martin Jr.
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Academic Buzzer Team | President
B.S. in Accountancy, August 2011
B.S. in Finance, August 2011
MAS Program, Class of 2012

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:29 am

E-mail will go out shortly, sorry, I've been finishing my COS assignment.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
BGSO
Tidus
Posts: 685
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 12:36 pm
Location: Champaign-Urbana and Arlington heights IL
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by BGSO » Sun Mar 28, 2010 1:06 am

I'd love to have a look at it too:

Dggarb@gmail,com
David Garb-
Buffalo Grove High School '09
UIUC-'13

Former member of the most dysfunctional scholastic bowl team in Illinois.
(11:23:30 PM) garb: Wait, are you talking about the porn or the reeses?

User avatar
... and the chaos of Mexican modernity
Rikku
Posts: 378
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:30 pm
Location: Orlando, Fl

Re: General Discussion

Post by ... and the chaos of Mexican modernity » Sun Mar 28, 2010 1:40 am

Zach Foster
North Myrtle Beach High School class of 2009
George Mason University class of 2013

User avatar
Auroni
Auron
Posts: 3002
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:23 pm
Location: Brooklyn

Re: General Discussion

Post by Auroni » Sun Mar 28, 2010 3:06 am

fact-check: the leadin for the cyclopropane reaction mentions the corey-chaykovsky reaction, which in reality produces oxacyclopropane, or epoxides. These aren't the same thing, although the latter name would make them seem like that. (Oxacyclopropane is a three membered ring structure that replaces one carbon with an oxygen atom)
Auroni Gupta
UIUC
ACF

User avatar
Auks Ran Ova
Forums Staff: Chief Administrator
Posts: 4052
Joined: Sun Apr 30, 2006 10:28 pm
Location: Minneapolis
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:09 am

I like quizbowl: cars0090@umn.edu
Rob Carson
University of Minnesota '11, MCTC '??
Member, ACF
Member, PACE
Writer and Editor, NAQT

User avatar
naturalistic phallacy
Auron
Posts: 1369
Joined: Tue May 01, 2007 12:03 am
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by naturalistic phallacy » Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:13 am

Yes, please! spenc207@umn.edu
Bernadette Spencer
University of Minnesota
MCTC
Event Manager, PACE

Father, among these many souls / Is there not one / Whom thou shalt pluck for love out of the coals?

User avatar
Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat
Rikku
Posts: 435
Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2007 1:16 pm
Location: Midland, MI

Re: General Discussion

Post by Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat » Sun Mar 28, 2010 10:06 am

Michael Hausinger
Coach, Bay City Western High School
formerly of University of Michigan and East Lansing High School

User avatar
Not That Kind of Christian!!
Yuna
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 10:36 pm
Location: Manhattan

Re: General Discussion

Post by Not That Kind of Christian!! » Sun Mar 28, 2010 10:16 am

Editors 1 wrote:The first step of one synthesis of this compound involves the conversion of glutamine to glutamate pyruvate, as chorismate is converted to anthranilate.
I'm pretty sure it's a copy editing rather than a knowledge problem, but this doesn't make sense; "glutamate pyruvate" isn't, to my knowledge, a compound, and many amino acid syntheses begin with the same steps, so while the chorismate to anthranilate conversion is unique (again, to my knowledge), things involving glutamine and pyruvate tend not to be.
Hannah Kirsch
Brandeis University 2010
NYU School of Medicine 2014

"Wow, those Scandinavians completely thorbjorned my hard-earned political capital."

User avatar
Mechanical Beasts
Banned Cheater
Posts: 5673
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Sun Mar 28, 2010 10:56 am

Or maybe the term "glutamate-pyruvate transaminase" was misunderstood as being something that transaminates "glutamate-pyruvate?"
Andrew Watkins

User avatar
MicroEStudent
Rikku
Posts: 462
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by MicroEStudent » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:01 pm

I've only taken a quick look at Editors 1 so far, but there are two things that stood out:

1) For the Juventus tossup, this is a perfect example of using the "It's not X, but ______" type of lead-in. If someone buzzed immediately after "team", there is a chance of a hose.

2) The Buddhism give away in Eightfold-Path strikes of an NAQT give away. It's a physics question, not religion.
Nathaniel Kane
RIT '09, '11 (BS Microelectronic Engineering, MS Microelectronic Engineering)

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:35 pm

Not That Kind of Christian!! wrote:
Editors 1 wrote:The first step of one synthesis of this compound involves the conversion of glutamine to glutamate pyruvate, as chorismate is converted to anthranilate.
I'm pretty sure it's a copy editing rather than a knowledge problem, but this doesn't make sense; "glutamate pyruvate" isn't, to my knowledge, a compound, and many amino acid syntheses begin with the same steps, so while the chorismate to anthranilate conversion is unique (again, to my knowledge), things involving glutamine and pyruvate tend not to be.
Yeah, that should be glutamate plus pyruvate... took that clue right out of my biochem textbook.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:43 pm

MicroEStudent wrote:I've only taken a quick look at Editors 1 so far, but there are two things that stood out:

1) For the Juventus tossup, this is a perfect example of using the "It's not X, but ______" type of lead-in. If someone buzzed immediately after "team", there is a chance of a hose.
The "It's not AS Roma clue" has nothing to do with the lead-in... Michel Platini is the only player to win European Footballer of the Year three years in a row, and he never played for Roma. AS Roma (and Lazio) for that matter, play in a Stadio Olimpico now, so that clue is to prevent people from buzzing in (stupidly) on the next clue, which refers to the Stadio Olimpico di Torino.

NOTE: I say "stupidly", because AS Roma is not the kind of club who has players winning those awards three years in a row (in fact, no Roma player has ever won it).
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
btressler
Tidus
Posts: 616
Joined: Fri Mar 26, 2004 7:23 pm
Location: West Chester, PA
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by btressler » Sun Mar 28, 2010 1:41 pm

Bill Tressler,
Dickinson ('97) Carnegie Mellon ('99) Delaware ('06)
Seen moderating at various SE Pennsylvania events.

Susan
Forums Staff: Administrator
Posts: 1817
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2003 12:43 am

Re: General Discussion

Post by Susan » Sun Mar 28, 2010 2:42 pm

I wouldn't mind taking a look at the set as well; srferrar@gmail.com
Susan
UChicago alum (AB 2003, PhD 2009)
Member emerita, ACF

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6365
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: NYC
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Sun Mar 28, 2010 6:50 pm

Could someone forward to me please? grapesmoker@gmail.com
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
at your pleasure
Auron
Posts: 1670
Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2008 7:56 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by at your pleasure » Sun Mar 28, 2010 7:42 pm

Douglas Graebner, Walt Whitman HS 10, Uchicago 14
"... imagination acts upon man as really as does gravitation, and may kill him as certainly as a dose of prussic acid."-Sir James Frazer,The Golden Bough

http://avorticistking.wordpress.com/

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 8:13 pm

To avoid clogging this thread any further, any one who wants the set should PM me.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

Batsteve
Lulu
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:59 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Batsteve » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:43 am

All the following comments pertain to just the science, since I'm nowhere qualified to comment on anything else.

I noticed that the science was distributed in "interesting" patterns throughout some of the packets. There were a lot of significant difficulty outliers, with answer lines like Lineweaver Burke and Data Encryption Standard in one round, and Ferrofluids and Gall in others. I can't say much about biology, but from my perspective it seemed less variable (except for Gall) and overall reasonable.

Questions on the Heliosphere, Dispersion, Linear, Acid, and Eightfold Way seemed ill-conceived. I don't know why wormholes came up, and in my room they were negged with black holes early in the question. The CS seemed awkward in the set--Visual Basic and DES seemed both ill-advised, and in my room Von Neumann Architecture was negged with Harvard Architecture after something that sounded like "named after a college." On the other hand, the question on pointers had a really good description of pointer arithmetic, and the question on fibonnacci numbers struck me as exactly what that kind of question should be. There was also a bonus on mathematicians (Gauss/Riemann/Hadamard?) that seemed to go out of its way not to be specific about important stuff about them. Ergodic Theorem and Hamiltonian both struck me as valiant attempts that played poorly, but I really like that they came up. The questions on Born-Oppenheimer and infinite square well seemed pretty good. The chemistry also seemed pretty good from the perspective of this not-a-chemist, which is a shame because it also seemed underrepresented.

I liked the bonuses, like the one on the wave equation that asked for x +/- ct, but I didn't take notes on them. They also seemed to do a pretty good job of avoiding crazy third parts. In general, I think the questions that had "canonical" answer lines played better than the ones with more esoteric ones, like Cross Section. My impression was that many of the questions felt like they could have been made two lines shorter without affecting playability, which gave an odd feeling not unlike playing long NAQT questions.
SteveJon
Unaffiliated

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6365
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: NYC
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:55 am

Batsteve wrote:Ferrofluids
Wow, that's, uh... difficult.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Mon Mar 29, 2010 5:47 pm

MicroEStudent wrote:2) The Buddhism give away in Eightfold-Path strikes of an NAQT give away. It's a physics question, not religion.
You also need to do something to make the answer not "quantum chromodynamics" earlier as it's impossible to know the answer to that question earlier and it's going to hose people who know stuff. This is going to be difficult, since the eightfold way is a consequence of QCD, but if you want to write a question on this, you're compelled. You at very least need to prompt on QCD before a point.

MaS
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Mon Mar 29, 2010 5:49 pm

Batsteve wrote:...answer lines like Lineweaver Burke...
This question was not so good. I'd say anyone who knows what's up is going to neg with "Michaelis-Menton" like I did. I'd go so far as to say that this question was downright misleading: it refers to a namesake constant which is the Michaelis constant and which many people will take to mean "named for the answer" not "named for... someone" and it refers to the answer as a model, a word that describes Michaelis-Menton kinetics much better than the Lineweaver-Burke plot. In fact, I'd even go so far as to say that Michaelis-Menton as an answer is not even wrong, given that the Lineweaver-Burke plot is, in fact, just a graph of the Michaelis-Menton equation! You need to do a lot, lot more to disambiguate if you want to use this answer line, which you probably shouldn't do.

MaS
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Mon Mar 29, 2010 5:55 pm

Batsteve wrote:...the question on pointers had a really good description of pointer arithmetic...
Glad you liked it.
Batsteve wrote:Ergodic Theorem... struck me as [a] valiant [attempt] that played poorly, but I really like that they came up.
Batsteve wrote:...I think the questions that had "canonical" answer lines played better than the ones with more esoteric ones, like Cross Section.
I guess it's pretty obvious that I wrote all of these. I'd like it if you could elaborate on what you didn't like about the latter two. I thought in particular that cross-section should have been okay, though maybe people just don't know it, which necessarily leads to bad play, I guess.

MaS
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
MicroEStudent
Rikku
Posts: 462
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by MicroEStudent » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:36 pm

Batsteve wrote: I think the questions that had "canonical" answer lines played better than the ones with more esoteric ones, like Cross Section.
Reading through the cross section question, I think it's a fine question. I'm more familiar with electron or hole capture cross sections, so I would not have been able to buzz until "the constant of proportionality between flux and reaction rate density per target density", but it may just be a topic that is not well known.
Nathaniel Kane
RIT '09, '11 (BS Microelectronic Engineering, MS Microelectronic Engineering)

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:38 pm

Captain Sinico wrote:
Batsteve wrote:...answer lines like Lineweaver Burke...
This question was not so good. I'd say anyone who knows what's up is going to neg with "Michaelis-Menton" like I did. I'd go so far as to say that this question was downright misleading: it refers to a namesake constant which is the Michaelis constant and which many people will take to me "named for the answer" not "named for... someone" and it refers to its answer as a model, a word that described Michaelis-Menton kinetics much better than the Lineweaver-Burke plot. In fact, I'd even go so far as to say that Michaelis-Menton as an answer is not even wrong, given that the Lineweaver-Burke plot is, in fact, just a graph of the Michaelis-Menton equation! You need to do a lot, lot more to disambiguate if you want to use this answer line, which you probably shouldn't do.

MaS
I was thinking as I read it on Saturday, "I probably would have negged on this too..." I think I will change that question to be about Michaelis-Menten.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

Batsteve
Lulu
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:59 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Batsteve » Mon Mar 29, 2010 8:51 pm

Captain Sinico wrote:
Batsteve wrote:Ergodic Theorem... struck me as [a] valiant [attempt] that played poorly, but I really like that they came up.
Batsteve wrote:...I think the questions that had "canonical" answer lines played better than the ones with more esoteric ones, like Cross Section.
I guess it's pretty obvious that I wrote all of these. I'd like it if you could elaborate on what you didn't like about the latter two. I thought in particular that cross-section should have been okay, though maybe people just don't know it, which necessarily leads to bad play, I guess.

MaS
I don't have the questions in front of me to point to anything in particular, so I could just be mixing different bits of the tournament together and completely off base. My memory of cross section is that I couldn't figure out what kind of thing was being asked for (Jeremy eventually got it after "differential" was dropped)--maybe I just couldn't make the leap from all those interaction clues, or I don't know very much about it. When I mentioned it, I really just was looking for an answer line to illustrate questions with unexpected answer lines, like Conservation Laws or Dispersion, that required clues to be put together in less straightforward ways to point to an answer. I don't remember why I didn't like ergodic theorem; I might be conflating it with the question on Hamiltonians.
SteveJon
Unaffiliated

User avatar
mpellegrini
Lulu
Posts: 74
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2010 4:24 am

Re: General Discussion

Post by mpellegrini » Mon Mar 29, 2010 8:58 pm

I'm still waiting for a copy of the packet set, but I wanted to mention that I felt the Colombia C packet had a substantial amount of net bait. I believe there were 9 or 10 negs in the Delaware/Maryland match. In particular:
* In the battle of the Teutoburg Forest question, the second or third clue in the packet was that the bows strings didn't work because it rained and they were wet. This is a well-known clue for the battle of Crecy, and 3 or 4 people were buzzed in there (I won the race and got the neg)
* The wormhole question started out "Named by John Wheeler", which prompted one of my teammates to neg with Black hole.
* The Von Neuman architecture question had a clue to the effect of "named for an institution" which caused me to neg with Harvard architecture.
I don't have my notes or the questions in front of me, but those are the things that specifically stand out in my mind. I think there was another question or two along the above lines.
Mark Pellegrini
University of Delaware (2001-Present)
Charter School of Wilmington (1997-2001)

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Mon Mar 29, 2010 9:16 pm

Columbia C packet wrote:This battle took place on Kalkriese Hill during torrential rains, which prevented one from using their sinew-string bows and waterlogged shields. They fell into a trap at the foot of the hill, where the road was narrow, sandwiched between the Great Bog on one side and the hill on the other, and it was also blocked by a trench, and ran near a wall from behind which the enemies attacked. They had been led to that hill by false rumors of rebellion started by the leader of the enemy side, and were ambushed by members of the Cherusci, Marsi, Chatti, Bructeri, Chauci, and Sicambri tribes, who united under Arminius. For 10 points, name this 9 A.D. battle in which an alliance of Germanic tribes under Arminius defeated Romans under Publius Quinctilius Varus, also known as the Varian disaster.
ANSWER: Battle of Teutoburg Forest [prompt on “Varian disaster” before “Varus”]
To be fair, I would think that the mention of the German name "Kalkriese" would dissuade a neg here. I didn't know about that, though, and I would have added more dissuading clues if I had known about that clue's commonly coming up for Crecy.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6365
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: NYC
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:23 pm

mpellegrini wrote:* In the battle of the Teutoburg Forest question, the second or third clue in the packet was that the bows strings didn't work because it rained and they were wet. This is a well-known clue for the battle of Crecy, and 3 or 4 people were buzzed in there (I won the race and got the neg)
Wouldn't this be true of any battle fought in the rain? Seems like a poor buzz.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
nobthehobbit
Rikku
Posts: 293
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2006 1:18 am

Re: General Discussion

Post by nobthehobbit » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:36 pm

grapesmoker wrote:
mpellegrini wrote:* In the battle of the Teutoburg Forest question, the second or third clue in the packet was that the bows strings didn't work because it rained and they were wet. This is a well-known clue for the battle of Crecy, and 3 or 4 people were buzzed in there (I won the race and got the neg)
Wouldn't this be true of any battle fought in the rain? Seems like a poor buzz.
I don't have the rest of the question in front of me, but it seems more like a poor clue since, as you say, bowstrings wouldn't work in any battle fought in the rain.
Daniel Pareja, Waterloo, Canadian quizbowl iconoclast

Stats zombie.
William Lyon Mackenzie King wrote:There are few men in this Parliament for whom I have greater respect than the leader of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation. I admire him in my heart, because time and again he has had the courage to say what lays on his conscience, regardless of what the world might think of him. A man of that calibre is an ornament to any Parliament.

User avatar
Edward Elric
Tidus
Posts: 506
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 11:31 pm
Location: Wheaton, IL

Re: General Discussion

Post by Edward Elric » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:51 pm

yeah i'd love to see a copy too cybermichaelp@juno.com
Mike Perovanovic
University of Ill.-Chicago '13
Wheaton North '09

User avatar
Papa's in the House
Tidus
Posts: 594
Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:43 pm
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by Papa's in the House » Tue Mar 30, 2010 10:49 am

Hey, Mike, just so you know:
olsb25 wrote:... any one who wants the set should PM me.
Last edited by Papa's in the House on Tue Mar 30, 2010 10:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
Charles Martin Jr.
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Academic Buzzer Team | President
B.S. in Accountancy, August 2011
B.S. in Finance, August 2011
MAS Program, Class of 2012

User avatar
grapesmoker
Sin
Posts: 6365
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:23 pm
Location: NYC
Contact:

Re: General Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Tue Mar 30, 2010 10:54 am

nobthehobbit wrote:I don't have the rest of the question in front of me, but it seems more like a poor clue since, as you say, bowstrings wouldn't work in any battle fought in the rain.
The text was posted above. I certainly don't think saying "this battle was fought in the rain" is a good clue, but the tossup did give a specific clue before that, and while that section is basically filler, I don't think it's egregiously misleading or anything.
Jerry Vinokurov
ex-LJHS, ex-Berkeley, ex-Brown, sorta-ex-CMU
code ape, loud voice, general nuissance

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:13 pm

Yeah, I have to agree; that's a risky buzz not coming in. The clue's not ideal, but it's not a hose, either.

MaS
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:16 pm

Here's the text of the questions of mine SteveJon wasn't sure about as submitted (I seem to have lost the edited set):

This idea appears as the non-trivial precondition in the proof of the Poincaré recurrence theorem. An oft-confused fact is that Liouville’s theorem is necessary but not sufficient for this theorem to hold. In systems obeying this stricture, the steady-state phase-space pdf is non-zero [at] all accessible points; therefore, this principle implies that, over a sufficiently long time, a system will visit all accessible microstates. This stricture allows the interchange of time and ensemble averages, so the most common use of this idea is to derive the theorem that each quadratic degree of freedom of a system is associated with the same amount of energy. For 10 points, name this principle that underpins classical statistical mechanics and that is the usual assumption in deriving the equipartition theorem.
ANSWER: the ergodic hypothesis [accept ergodycity or molecular chaos]

For a given interaction, this value can be obtained up to normalization by integrating the square modulus of an element of the transfer matrix over all orientations. That’s the case because this quantity is in general the all-solid-angle integral of a related quantity having the name of this quantity prefixed with differential. One compelling argument for the necessity of quantum theory is the fact that this quantity diverges for Rutherford scattering. This quantity is formally the constant of proportionality between flux and reaction rate density per target density, so this quantity times the target density is the probability of reaction. This variable is usually symbolized lower-case sigma and is often given in the unit barn, equal to ten to the minus twenty-fourth centimeters squared. For 10 points, name this quantity that can be thought of as the probability that one particle will hit another.
ANSWER: microscopic total cross-section [prompt on sigma]
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
Mechanical Beasts
Banned Cheater
Posts: 5673
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:26 pm

Those look pretty solid; I'm not sure I love the second cross-section clue. "This is the solid angle integral of a quantity called differential this" feels pretty unbuzzable to me; even if that's technically unique, I don't imagine it would play well even among people who know those clues about cross section. (I certainly know that that is true; I wouldn't have the negative knowledge to buzz.)
Andrew Watkins

User avatar
Captain Sinico
Auron
Posts: 2840
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:46 pm
Location: Champaign, Illinois

Re: General Discussion

Post by Captain Sinico » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:43 pm

Well, the thing is, you can positively eliminate other things by referring to the previous clue, since the differential cross-section is, in fact, the previously mentioned quantity proportional to an element of the transfer matrix. So it's not purely "this is the solid-angle integral of something and that something has the same name as this with differential prefixed" but rather, "this is the solid-angle integral of an element of the transfer matrix (up to normalization) and that quantity has the same name as this with differential prefixed." If the former were the case, I'd agree with you: many important quantities are solid-angle integrals of other quantities (though people might not know that,) so that would be a knowledge-punishing clue.
Actually, my trepidation was that I probably should have put "differential" later since people may reflex off that due to previous questions. I considered that and wound up putting it where it was.

MaS
Mike Sorice
Coach, Centennial High School of Champaign, IL (2014-) & Team Illinois (2016-2018)
Alumnus, Illinois ABT (2000-2002; 2003-2009) & Fenwick Scholastic Bowl (1999-2000)
ACF
IHSSBCA
PACE

User avatar
Mechanical Beasts
Banned Cheater
Posts: 5673
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: General Discussion

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:48 pm

Right. I'm just saying that that clue will only make sense to people who understand the one before. I guess how useful that clue is is given precisely by how many people understand the first clue but don't know what it refers to; I'm not convinced that's a very large set.

I'd be worried about reflex buzzes from people who just know "hey, there's a differential kind of this!"; that said, I think there are enough "differential" quantities that are commonly known (differential resistance, etc.) that it might prevent reflex buzzes.
Andrew Watkins

evilmonkey
Yuna
Posts: 964
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2006 11:23 am
Location: Durham, NC

Re: General Discussion

Post by evilmonkey » Tue Mar 30, 2010 4:31 pm

Captain Sinico wrote:Here's the text of the questions of mine SteveJon wasn't sure about as submitted (I seem to have lost the edited set):
Looking at my copy of the set, that is how those two questions appeared in the final set as well.
Bryce Durgin
Culver Academies '07
University of Notre Dame '11
Texas A&M '15

User avatar
DumbJaques
Forums Staff: Administrator
Posts: 3080
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2004 6:21 pm
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: General Discussion

Post by DumbJaques » Wed Mar 31, 2010 2:16 pm

Wow, that's, uh... difficult.
Dude, Jeremy powered Ferrofluids! I think it was because of youtube.

On the whole this tournament was rather disappointing, but I think it's important to remember what a limited packet pool the editors had to work with - I don't believe too many people on Columbia B or C have significant writing experience, for example, and both of those packets where used as stand-alones. At the same time, there are standards you have to meet no matter what kind of raw material you're working with. Packets had entirely unpredictable distributions - some had 5 or 6 science questions, some had 2 or 3. That's an issue to be sure. At a lot of times this tournament frankly played like a guerilla set - you got the sense that the packets were not changed a great deal, except bizarrely some questions had lies inserted into them (Mark assures me that his Van Buren question did not claim that VB ordered the Trail of Tears).

When we played the Illinois packet, I told my teammates going in that they needed to dissociate themselves from the rhythm of the set thus far, because it was going to harder and written much tighter and (for lack of a better term) Sorice-ier. I made a similar warning when we prepared to play Eric's packet. I ended up not writing much for the Maryland A packet, but was disappointed to see that it didn't really look edited at all. The pronounced variations in round to round point totals seem to corroborate this perception. We're talking swings of combined scores approaching 700 on the Delaware packet vs. about 300 on the Illinois packet, and really that's not at all an indictment of either packet - it's just a variational issue, and both were certainly above par.

From talking to Dan Humphrey, who I was very excited to see made his editing debut with this set's history distribution, it seems like Kunle and co. were pretty crunched by the packet situation. I will be the first to say that I could see areas of pronounced improvement from last year's Buzzerfest, but it also seems like a lot of editing work on the set wasn't begun until very recently (in some cases by necessity of submission lateness, in some cases not). Certainly Princeton has the responsibility here, but I was disappointed I didn't see more regular circuit teams show up (and submit packets).

Buzzefest 09 was problematic but a seriously commendable effort by a group of first-time editors to turn around a tradition of mediocrity, and I think we owe it to such efforts to better support them in the future. I'll go ahead and claim some personal responsibility on that front for not writing more for Maryland's packet. Generally, the better you get at writing, the more demands get placed on you, but it's probably important that we bite the bullet and, at a save-the-children, 10 cents-a-day level, continue to support packet submission events. Mike and Eric (especially, since he wrote a solo packet and didn't play) did a much better job of this for Buzzerfest than I did, and it's something I'll be sure not to repeat for next year. Similarly, I hope that teams who passed this event up will give it a chance next year, because I think this editing team is hitting the point where they're capable of doing a very solid job with the right resources.

That said, I'd still like to get some quality hate on - Kunle, could you send me the set? I've got some notes about things that struck myself or my teammates as variously false or at best misleading. My issue with Teutoberg Forest, for instance, was partly a mostly useless, somewhat hosish clue about rain, but moreso the implication that it was some kind of pitched battle that occurred statically at that one location, when in fact it was actually a protracted ambush-and-run through the woods. I concur with Mike (and neg-curred at the tournament) on the Lineweaver-Burke question - it's my understanding that you'd actually have to work pretty hard to construct a question that better referred to L-B than to Michaelis-Menten, and considering it's basically a graph you use to look at M-M kinetics, I kind of buy Mike's assertion that MM is likely to be correct for the clues up through a significantly deep point in the question. I'd also like to be able to mention questions I really liked, and all I can remember offhand is that bonus part on Li Hongzhang and the tossup on psychopomps.
Chris Ray
OSU
University of Chicago, 2016
University of Maryland, 2014
ACF, PACE

User avatar
olsb25
Wakka
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Virginia Beach, VA --->Princeton, NJ

Re: General Discussion

Post by olsb25 » Wed Mar 31, 2010 2:54 pm

Will do. I think we were more on top of things this year (i.e. finishing the tournament before it started, as opposed to while it was going on), but there were still some problematic areas, probably provoked largely by me being forced to work on questions on areas I know little about (philosophy, for example, due to someone here who said they would help just disappearing), and not having enough time to focus on areas I can be useful in.

Not to make excuses, but we were also squeezed by the fact that our midterms were three weeks ago, and, lo and behold, we got most of the packets after that, crunching the editing work into a frenzied two-week period. We were also promised some packets that didn't materialize as expected, and so some questions that I would have liked to replaced had to be fixed up as best we could given the time crunch. I won't be leading the editing for this next year (I can't afford to lose a week+ of my life less than two months before my thesis will be due), but I hope that we can spread out the editing a little more next year so that all parts of the set get worked on with equal expertise and effort.
Kunle Demuren
Ocean Lakes (VA) Scholastic Bowl (2003-07)
Princeton College Bowl (2007-)

User avatar
Jeaton1
Wakka
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 12:24 am

Re: General Discussion

Post by Jeaton1 » Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:24 pm

I felt that the question on "The Gospel According to Jesus Christ" tossup suffered from a very poor choice of intro clue. Stating that it "like Luke, begins with an introduction to Theophilus" is super neg-bait for "The Book of Acts", which also begins with an introduction to Theophilus. I feel like that clue for the aforementioned tossup had no unique qualities and thus cause me (and probably others to neg). I would like to see "The Gospel..." tossup to see if perhaps I missed a key word that did indeed distinguish Saramago's literary work from the text in the New Testament.
Jeremy Eaton
Maryland Academic Quiz Team

Locked