Tuesday, March 21, 2006

March Open Quiz


1st: Kunal Sawardekar and Niranjan Pedanekar
2nd: Shamanth Rao and Abhishek Nagaraj
3rd: Ganesh Hegde and J. Ramanand
Other Finalists: Shivaji Marella+Siddharth Natarajan, Sudarshan Purohit+Salil Bijur, Meghashyam Shirodkar+Aniruddha Kasbekar

* Good quiz overall - several new areas explored
* Good coverage of sports and films, reflecting interests of the question setters :-)
* Some questions were a little too easy, IMO (none came to us - grrr!- except one, which we thought was too easy and hence got bowled through the gate)
* Techno-problems could have been avoided
* Thanks to the organisers for the prizes and the chocolates
* Some newer people spotted participating, including some kids who went on to smash the tough sports questions down the baseline.
* As Niranjan already commented, they won narrowly (by 5 points) "thanks to an answer by Kunal that ran 'sub-commandante marcos of EZNL' :-)"
* We have had six quizzes so far since May last year - every time, the winner has either been Niranjan or Kunal S. In fact, Kunal has won the last four in a row and plus he's having a terrific year (blame it on "final year luck" :-) ) - well done!
* The next open quiz will be in May, by Niranjan
* Apologies to Dominique Lapierre for polishing him off :-)

Others please comment...

Date and Time: 26 March, Sunday from 12:00 pm
Organised and Conducted by Vibhendu Tiwari and Anand Sivashankar
Venue: Dewang Mehta Auditorium, Bhageerath, Persistent Systems Pvt. Ltd., Pune
Flavour: General
Team Size: Two per team


Harish Kumar said...

Can someone post the results and the questions?

niranjan said...

1. Kunal S and Niranjan ;))
2. Shamanth and Abhishek
3. Ramanand and Ganesh

We won by a fiver on the last question, thanks to an answer by Kunal that ran 'sub-commandante marcos of EZNL' ;)) Overall, IMO, a good quiz by Anand and Vibhendu. Enjoyable. Liked some questions a lot, but some were like the last one ;))

Kunal said...

Thats EZLN.

Anonymous said...

Can you guys post the Q & A's for the benefit of those who couldn't make it to Pune ?

* Amused Bystander*

Salil said...

Kunal's final year luck?
Bah! I seem to be having final year bad luck ;-)!
Nice questions. But there were many good questions we couldv cracked that NP & KS blocked :-(
The range was also well covered, though I sensed a kind of a "leftist" touch to some qns ;-) (not trying to start off a political flame war here!)

Abhishek said...

methinks brilliant quiz, and yes I think KS deserves more credit that 'final year luck'.

niranjan said...

- Positives of the quiz have been discussed by Ramanand and others, unexplored territories being one of the best feature of the quiz.
- But I think some questions had limited number of possible answers and many teams would have similar first guesses. e.g. Narmada bachao.
- Some questions were very easy. and some were obscure like the Mahashweta Devi one, to which Anand gladly awarded points to a wrong answer ;)) The tough ones do not matter a lot, but the easy ones could be avoided.

But again, all this is in retrospection, and as Anand said after the quiz, one does not think of these things before the quiz. I will choose to agree to that, now that my own quiz is looming large over the horizon ;)) So, given the times, better not preach what is difficult to practise ;))

666 said...

I attended/participated in a organised event quiz after three years. My reflections

1. Quizzing hasnt changed much. I
have changed :-( which should explain my answer 'Chaudhary Charan Singh'!! for G.L.Nanda

2. I dont quite understand the unexplored areas which R and N speak about. Maybe that could explain the different 'feel' i got of the entire questions basket

3. Perhaps the most striking was the school team. I was sitting next to these guys during the finals and they were cracking most of the questions. Hats Off. Great for Pune quizzing. Is this the first school team to have impressed at an BCQC event?

4. Great effort by Anand and Vibhendu .. and no registrations fees too.

Anonymous said...

A quick summary from the other side:
Elims: As averages go, the three mixed gender teams performed much better than the all-male teams, and the only school team also had a higher than average score.

So probably it is time to revisit some myths.
In fact, Suhas and Shilpa, non-quizzers by their own admission, came close to qualifying.

This team, along with the other newcomers got those toughies right for which the regular quizzers came with ridiculous guesses. In fact, what did them in were the more workable questions. I have done some analysis on the answering patterns, using some basic statistics. This reinforces two of my long-held beliefs:

1. Quizzers do better in quizzes because they've been to more quizzes.

2. Quizzers do better because the spread of topics is skewed in their favour.

A little spreading of topics probably would further do away with this bias favouring the professional quizzers compared to the public-at-large.

I am glad that we eventually did not run our school section of the elims, replacing them with some impromptu questions. Going by the performance of the only school team, we would have looked really silly with those questions.

Some of the newcomers are new to Pune, others forged teams right at the venue. I will upload the mail-ids at the Inquizitive; the moderators can probably send them an invite so that we can see more of them in the future.

Finals: A very keenly contested game, till the very end. There were some great answers from all the teams and lot many great guesses.

I guess we were guilty of making a few questions a bit too easy when we went overboard with piling up them with clues. In retrospect, some questions would have worked better with lesser baggage. Some of the single-guess questions (like the kids workshop question) looked nice as stand-alone fundaes; and this would have clouded our judgment. But we did give a serious thought along these lines, before we finalized each question. Since some of these topics have never been covered earlier, we were not sure of the familiarity level. This experience has definitely left us more sensitive to the aspect.

Obscurity: Eventually, only six-seven questions went totally unanswered (if you include the answers from the audience as well) and a cursory look at the answers to them does not suggest any obscurity. For every EZLN, we had a Kunal Sawardekar ;-) So, not only we underestimate our non-quizzers, we tend to underestimate our quizzers as well.

In fact, the audience ended up answering most of the unanswered questions. The youngest kid in the audience came up with the name of an Asian scientist, when the finalists still seemed stuck at Feynman.

As for the Mahashweta Devi connect, I was emboldened by the fact that the audience was familiar to at least one strand of the connect, thanks to a question from JR's PiQue elims from the last year, and I thought the next connect was only a step away.

Workability: My personal opinion is that this fetishization of workability ends up restricting a quizmaster. A good quiz should have a healthy mix of both workable and knowledge-based questions. Working out can be contextual or it could be mere conjectural. Every workable question is essentially an 'either you know it or not' question, it is just that it 'works-out' to familiar territory for the quizzers.
This said, we do not discount workability and in fact spent a lot of time phrasing the questions, peppering them with the right 'embedded clues', but they need not always point to familiar stuff.
Any more 'working-out' would beong more to a gym than a quiz ;-)

Range: It is interesting that JR has pointed out coverage of Sports and Films, when personally we feel that the widest coverage in sheer number of genres & languages represented was reserved for literature.

As for questions being t(a?)inted by ideology, I guess most of the people covered were eminent personalities in their own 'right' (with or without their political/ideological affiliations) and I can think of at least three personalities who made it in spite of their beliefs. So let us please keep this out of the discussion.

The whole affair has been a learning experience, and I believe the next effort will take care of the problems with this one.


PS – I intend to upload the questions at 'Inquizitive'; hence I have refrained from giving any answers here.

Gaurav said...

Sad to have missed it. Am really happy hearing about a school team which was cracking many questions. Great omen for our school quiz plans.

Please do post questions asap.

And yes Ramanand, I hope to do an open quiz before Niranjan. :-)

niranjan said...

"For every EZLN, we had a Kunal Sawardekar ;-)"

But was he excited at the prospect of answering that question? ;))

someone else said...

sorry for going off topic..but desperately seeking some info on open quizzing in cal..any help wld be appreciated thanks

Ganesh Hegde said...

I liked the quiz a lot.