Events that are on the docket

Old college threads.

Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Gautam » Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:38 pm

DumbJaques wrote:
but I don't think we really need more events with a focus on experienced/open players, which most open events end up having, even if they don't intend on having that focus.



Couldn't we just stop making every open event into difficulty clusterfucks where everyone is bludgeoned to death with the Watkins Pole? I mean, that's what I'm trying to do, and addressing the lack of regular season events/rampant openification concerns seems like a separate goal. I agree we don't need more events focused on super-experienced open players at the expense of everyone else, but I just as strongly reject the binary choice between that route and refusing to allow them to compete in field-sensible ways.

I'll let Jonathan clarify, but I wonder if what he's really getting at is the lamentable reality that in the past few years, anytime anyone has written an event that's labeled "open," it nearly always ended up abusing even the top teams and being utterly inaccessible to less-experienced squads. That's bad! But even here, I doubt that the tournaments in question being declared "opens" is really the culprit; Penn Bowl wasn't open this year, and it was pretty darn hard. If the presence of a couple of people playing a given set actually changes how the editors go about writing it, I'd say that's a much bigger problem than what we're considering here.

To rephrase, let's say you find yourself putting together a tournament and thinking "oh, but Jonathan/Jerry/anyone else (in school or not) is playing this tournament, I better change this tossup on The Birthmark into one on Feathertop." STOP DOING THAT. It's bad, and honestly it's probably a big part of the reason why people have concerns about non-ironclad eligibility restrictions leading to ridiculous sets that won't play for most of the community.


Chris, it's not just the answerlines that we need to be concerned about.

People tend to write/edit tournaments with the field in mind. I'll eat my hat if there isn't a single editor out there who has written a particular tossup or a bonus in a particular way because he/she thought it would challenge the best players in the field. Furthermore, editors not only have to make judgments on tossup/bonus answers, but also on the clue ordering and structuring of the tossups.

If editors are aware that the best of the best players are going to attend their tournament, they are bound to make higher numbers of judgement calls which allow significantly harder clues for the leadins and the upper middle clues than the rest of the field can stomach. I know I have been guilty of this (my work for MO 09 is a good example.) I know other editors have succumbed to the same problem at times as well.

I think we can all agree that having more questions with harder (than appropriate) clues just adds more fuel to the fire of runaway canon/difficulty expansion. People start thinking in terms of "Oh, this clue X was an upper middle clue at regular tournament Y, it can't possibly be a middle clue for this harder tournament Z" or "Player A buzzed on this leadin clue for that tossup on B, so I'm sure he can answer 2 bonus parts on it," etc. This has real effects on the quality of submissions to tournaments and the ability of editors to make proper fixes to the submissions (see the ACF Nationals discussion.)

I strongly believe that one of the sure-fire ways of preventing escalating difficulty in leadin and middle clues (by reducing the number of judgment errors) is to just limit the chances for editors and packet-submitters to salivate over their favorite clues and/or challenge/appease/impress the best players of the tournament. Limiting the tournament to people who form a 'regular circuit' by being affiliated to institutions is a fair way of doing it across the board.

Lastly, I think that player turnover from year to year is a key part of maintaining reasonable levels of difficulty and vitality in the circuit. If, for example, Rob, Brendan, and I (as a team, as two teams, as three different teams, whatever) crashed the midwest circuit at all the regular difficulty tournaments in the 2011-12 season, it's not going to give the editors of Regionals/SCT and Nationals/ICT a good sense of how the actual midwest circuit (teams like Ohio State, Carleton, Michigan, Illinois, Chicago, Toronto) is playing and might cause them to make poor difficulty judgments.

I know some of the better active players are going to be affiliated with an institution, and are going to be playing all these regular difficulty tournaments. But then again, the point is that they play these events so that the editors of the national tournaments can more accurately determine the ideal difficulty of the championships and make proper judgments.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Gautam » Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:40 pm

Morraine Man wrote:Back when I was a novice undergraduate, open teams would regularly play at ACF Regionals and other technically non-open tournaments. Heck, one year there was even an open team at SCT! They were referred to as "exhibition teams" and they were ineligible to win the tournament or play in the finals, even if they had the best record. And it was no big deal, it didn't scare anyone away. Heck, half the times the exhibition teams weren't even all that good.


Back when you were a novice undergraduate (2004?) not a lot of quizbowl was all that good either...

EDIT

Look, we've done a lot to "professionalize" quizbowl by making the experience of playing questions more consistent (quality is better, fewer clunkers, etc.) That isn't to say we're done with having to perform quality control; in fact, various current developments suggest that we need to step up the quality control for eliminating difficulty outliers. Furthermore, we need to make sure that who gets or who doesn't get to play tournaments is an arbitrary decision made by the editor or the tournament director. Pretty much every other sport/game which has thriving circuits has strict enforcement of eligibility requirements. The quizbowl circuit is not "thriving" enough that we can start introducing this model without causing the circuit to implode.
Last edited by Gautam on Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:43 pm

Yeah, what's with all the "but we've always done it this way" comments that don't end with "and that's why we're in the terrible situation we are now"?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Thu Apr 28, 2011 6:31 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:Yeah, what's with all the "but we've always done it this way" comments that don't end with "and that's why we're in the terrible situation we are now"?


I really don't believe that we're in a "terrible situation." This might be getting somewhat far afield of the discussion being had here, but we're actually in a pretty great situation. More teams than ever are attending tournaments and writing packets for those tournaments. The circuit is growing and there are a lot of clubs in existence that were dead or that you wouldn't imagine having teams five years ago. None of that means "keep going as we are" but it does mean that the past (which both of us are old enough to remember) was not some sort of horrible monstrosity where bands of non-students roamed the quizbowl lands eviscerating every team they came across. If everything had been as terrible as all that, we would not today be having a circuit-wide debate on how to manage the schedule because there are too many tournaments because the circuit would really have imploded. But it hasn't, and I think these predictions about how if we have an open event somewhere this will collapse everything and everyone will perish are overblown and not backed up by any historical record.

In my view, things are pretty good, though far from ideal. We can make them better by instituting various changes that we think are going to improve the situation; the scheduling reform effort, in particular, is a much-needed move that I think should alleviate a lot of the problems we've had with chaotic tournament coordination across the regular year. And I think making most tournaments eligibility-restricted to current students is a fine plan too; I feel like I have to keep repeating that to keep from being caricatured as "Jerry wants to win every event in existence by obliterating middle-of-the-road teams." What I object to is what I see as step 1 towards the elimination of open events, which from where I sit seems like what a number of people want to do. Now, if that's incorrect and I have misread what people are saying, that's fine, and I am happy to retract whatever isn't applicable.

At this juncture in the discussion I want to make a point that I once made to Nick at some HSNCT one year, and the point is this: old people keep this game running. Whatever the problems people have with NAQT, I think we're all pretty much in agreement that it's generally better for SCT and ICT to exist than not. Hey, those things are edited by noted old people Seth Teitler and Andrew Yaphe, respectively. ACF Nationals this year was edited by three old people including yours truly. Old people contributed to such ACF Regionals in recent times as well, and also contribute in the way of writing questions for other events (I'll be collaborating with Yale on their tournament and with Eric on Penn Bowl). In other words, a lot of us devote a lot of time and energy to this game, and I think for us to have a few times during the year (including during the regular season) when we can play an open tournament against other old people (and also non-old people) isn't asking for very much; certainly it isn't any kind of demand that will break the circuit in irreparable ways, provided the tournaments are scheduled appropriately.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:08 pm

grapesmoker wrote:More teams than ever are attending tournaments and writing packets for those tournaments.


What?

At this juncture in the discussion I want to make a point that I once made to Nick at some HSNCT one year, and the point is this: old people keep this game running. Whatever the problems people have with NAQT, I think we're all pretty much in agreement that it's generally better for SCT and ICT to exist than not. Hey, those things are edited by noted old people Seth Teitler and Andrew Yaphe, respectively. ACF Nationals this year was edited by three old people including yours truly. Old people contributed to such ACF Regionals in recent times as well, and also contribute in the way of writing questions for other events (I'll be collaborating with Yale on their tournament and with Eric on Penn Bowl). In other words, a lot of us devote a lot of time and energy to this game, and I think for us to have a few times during the year (including during the regular season) when we can play an open tournament against other old people (and also non-old people) isn't asking for very much; certainly it isn't any kind of demand that will break the circuit in irreparable ways, provided the tournaments are scheduled appropriately.


As an old person who does a lot of work to keep the game running and plays opens, I hardly need to be told this. But I also think that I'm perfectly served by the summer and by 1-2 events in the regular year and I see no reason to constantly crash THUNDER/Terrapin/Penn Bowl. I wish you would see things the same way.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:15 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:
grapesmoker wrote:More teams than ever are attending tournaments and writing packets for those tournaments.


What?


All right, I guess I'm not prepared to say "more than ever," (there were a lot of things happening before I started college that I don't keep track of) but there's definitely been an increase in tournament attendance since the middle of the decade. ACF Regionals and ACF Fall attendance has been increasing too; I edited in 2007 and 2010 (and helped in 2011) and I saw both an increase in the volume and the quality of the submitted material. Of course, some circuits like California have been through tough times, but I think those problems are related to a lot of people leaving and the circuit having to rebuild from scratch.

As an old person who does a lot of work to keep the game running and plays opens, I hardly need to be told this. But I also think that I'm perfectly served by the summer and by 1-2 events in the regular year and I see no reason to constantly crash THUNDER/Terrapin/Penn Bowl. I wish you would see things the same way.


Sure, summer and two events during the year are what I'm talking about, so I guess we're not actually disagreeing here? As far as I know THUNDER, Terrapin, and Penn Bowl are all going to be eligibility restricted this year, which is fine with me.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Auroni » Thu Apr 28, 2011 8:01 pm

grapesmoker wrote:THUNDER... [is] going to be eligibility restricted this year,


Yes, it will be. Speaking more about THUNDER, look for a tournament announcement sometime over the summer, possibly by the end of July. We want it to be ready for mirrors by early September.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby No Rules Westbrook » Thu Apr 28, 2011 8:55 pm

I just don't understand why "college student" versus "not a college student" is any kind of valid distinction. To me, that seems like as strange of a dichotomy to draw as "player who likes pepsi" versus "player who likes coke."

There's absolutely no reason why it should be more harmful or discouraging to lose to a non-collegiate player than a collegiate player.

If you're someone who cares about winning and doing well in quizbowl in general, why on earth would you want to restrict your goal to only opponents who attend college? If you're a more casual player who isn't all that concerned with moving up the qb ladder, then you probably don't much notice or care.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat » Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:49 pm

No Rules Westbrook wrote:I just don't understand why "college student" versus "not a college student" is any kind of valid distinction. To me, that seems like as strange of a dichotomy to draw as "player who likes pepsi" versus "player who likes coke."

There's absolutely no reason why it should be more harmful or discouraging to lose to a non-collegiate player than a collegiate player.

If you're someone who cares about winning and doing well in quizbowl in general, why on earth would you want to restrict your goal to only opponents who attend college? If you're a more casual player who isn't all that concerned with moving up the qb ladder, then you probably don't much notice or care.


I think the best distinction would be "time playing quiz bowl" or age, but that's much less advertised than school status of undergrad, grad student, med school student, phd student, etc. The goal for younger players is to be able to beat players of comparable experience, and once you are close to the top of one level, you aim for the next. No sane freshmen are going to start out by saying "I want to be the best lit player in the game by the end of the year," since that's not reasonably possible. Instead, they will aim to be the best freshman, then the best undergrad, and so on. The reason why "college student" versus "not a college student" is a distinction is that it is an easy one to make. For people who know other players pretty well, the college vs non-college student is pretty irrelevant. For someone in their first few tournaments, it's an easy way to get some gauge on how long people have played for.

Personally, I agree with the general consensus that most tournaments shouldn't be opens, and that having only one or sometimes two open tournaments and some scattered side events each semester is perfectly reasonable.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:09 pm

gkandlikar wrote:
Morraine Man wrote:Back when I was a novice undergraduate, open teams would regularly play at ACF Regionals and other technically non-open tournaments. Heck, one year there was even an open team at SCT! They were referred to as "exhibition teams" and they were ineligible to win the tournament or play in the finals, even if they had the best record. And it was no big deal, it didn't scare anyone away. Heck, half the times the exhibition teams weren't even all that good.


Back when you were a novice undergraduate (2004?) not a lot of quizbowl was all that good either...


We also breathed oxygen in 2004, I guess we should stop doing that too?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:20 pm

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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Fri Apr 29, 2011 12:38 am

Alright, we've been talking about this on the IRC for a while and there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about what I'm arguing for, so let me post a little manifesto.

First of all, I am NOT making an argument to nostalgia. I'm not saying "we used to allow exhibition teams, therefore let's allow them now". Instead, I am making the argument "we allowed exhibition teams in the past with no clear ill effects, maybe exhibition teams are not inherently bad." The fact that this practice was common during a bad era is not enough to establish that it is a bad practice; even during the worst periods of human history, people still get a few things right.

Second, let me acknowledge what I view as the fair critiques of exhibition teams:

(1) If a lot of open teams show up to a tournament, the editors will make the tournament harder. This is probably the argument that I respect the most. If this happens, the problem is that editors are not correctly identifying their target audience or are focusing on an audience other than their targets. This is both a bad quizbowl theory decision and a bad quizbowl business decision and should rightfully be condemned.

(2) Exhibition teams are scary. I'm much less convinced by this one; while exhibition teams can in theory be superteams, it's not inherently true. Exhibition teams can consist of washed-up former players who are no longer very good, they can consist of a few mediocre friends playing together, etc. In one situation from 2006, a player from Princeton and his girlfriend from CalTech decided to play ACF Regionals together in Chicago (equidistant between them) as an exhibition team. It's not all ACF all-stars playing with other ACF all-stars.

(3) Exhibition teams are reinforce the idea that quizbowl is cliquey. I have a lot of respect for this argument. You don't get onto a superteam unless you have connections. People might feel like "I'll never succeed in quizbowl because I don't have the connections necessary to get onto a team with [famous quizbowl player]", or the related thought "I am limited to people at my school, this guy was able to get awesome players that he knows from a message board, I might as well quit".

These are all problems, but I think we can devise a system that negates most of these problems. We can place limits on the number of exhibition teams that can play a tournament, we can break up superteams and only allow exhibition teams that aren't an order of magnitude better than the rest of the field. And, as an absolute rule, we should make exhibition teams ineligible to win tournaments. We should also ban them from the playoffs and make losses to them (or wins against them) not count in the final standings. We can ban them entirely from tournaments were impressionable young teams are getting their first view of quizbowl, like EFT or ACF Fall.

This is very similar to the "exhibition team" system that was around until the mid to late 2000's, and I think it protects the interests of new teams, prevents a situation like 09 Terrapin (I agree that VCU was unjustly screwed over), while also allowing TD's to avoid byes, allowing non-eligible players the chance to hear a few live tossups, and letting some money change hands in the quizbowl economy.

Clearly, college v. college should be the primary focus on college quizbowl. This is why exhibition teams should be clearly marked as an aberrational "other", why they should be restricted, why they should be banned from winning or even mattering in the end. I just simply don't think they should be banned outright in all situations.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Dr. Loki Skylizard, Thoracic Surgeon » Fri Apr 29, 2011 12:58 am

Morraine Man wrote:(2) Exhibition teams are scary. I'm much less convinced by this one; while exhibition teams can in theory be superteams, it's not inherently true. Exhibition teams can consist of washed-up former players who are no longer very good, they can consist of a few mediocre friends playing together, etc. In one situation from 2006, a player from Princeton and his girlfriend from CalTech decided to play ACF Regionals together in Chicago (equidistant between them) as an exhibition team. It's not all ACF all-stars playing with other ACF all-stars.


I wanted to check this out to see if you're right, or if the general association of "open" teams with "superteams" is right.

This is just a bit I slapped together in a few minutes; I'm sure I missed a few teams, or forgot a tournament or whatever. I encourage people to add info to it as I missed it.

Terrapin mirror @ Toronto
Anne Pfist (hybrid team, all college players?) - won tournament

Terrapin mirror @ Michigan
Lafer/Westbrook/Jerry/Trevor - finished second
Ben, Kevin & Mike - finished fifth

THUNDER @ UIUC
Kevin Malis & Andrew Deveau - 4th (high schoolers)
Rom/UIUC house - 9th

THUNDER @ Penn
CMU + Jerry - 2nd

Actual open events!

Illinois Open
Lafer/Westbrook/Seth/Sorice - won
Rom/Bruce/Richard Mason - finished fourth

Minnesota Open
Lafer/Westbrook/Seth/Jerry - 1st
Magin/Brendan Byrne/Phil Guan/Ben Forster - 2nd
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:01 am

Fred, keep in mind that I am not defending the practice of open teams as it exists today. I am defending an older practice, under which none of those teams would have been allowed to win the tournament, much less finish in the top bracket of a non-open tournament.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Dr. Loki Skylizard, Thoracic Surgeon » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:02 am

Morraine Man wrote:Fred, keep in mind that I am not defending the practice of open teams as it exists today. I am defending an older practice, under which none of those teams would have been allowed to win the tournament, much less finish in the top bracket of a non-open tournament.

Sure, but wouldn't it also be beneficial to look at the reality of the open team in the present day?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Skepticism and Animal Feed » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:05 am

Fred wrote:
Morraine Man wrote:Fred, keep in mind that I am not defending the practice of open teams as it exists today. I am defending an older practice, under which none of those teams would have been allowed to win the tournament, much less finish in the top bracket of a non-open tournament.

Sure, but wouldn't it also be beneficial to look at the reality of the open team in the present day?


Not as a measure of the merit of a proposed system under which many of those teams would have either been disqualified from winning or even outright banned.

And besides, many of your examples come from tournaments with "Open" in the name, where of course superteams will form and this isn't a problem.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Dr. Loki Skylizard, Thoracic Surgeon » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:14 am

Morraine Man wrote:Not as a measure of the merit of a proposed system under which many of those teams would have either been disqualified from winning or even outright banned.

But as a measure of the benefits or harm of including open teams as they are in non-open events.

And besides, many of your examples come from tournaments with "Open" in the name, where of course superteams will form and this isn't a problem.

I (think I) fixed that.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:14 am

Fred wrote:THUNDER @ Penn
CMU + Jerry - 2nd


I thought we'd actually won that tournament, as I believe we won both games of a disadvantaged final.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Bartleby » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:39 am

The Anne Pfist team at Terrapin is all college players (and all undergrads, at that).

I don't think that there's any harm in having Open tournaments, as long as they're designated as such. When teams go to opens, they know that they might run into some of Quiz Bowl's more illustrious players, so the argument of "waah, I got spanked by Jerry and Laferbrook" is a poor one. However, I pretty much agree with the idea that the rules on which tournaments should be allowed to feature open teams need to be made consistent. The argument that if you get beat by a strong collegiate team, it will motivate you more, is, I think, a strong one. You know that you'll play that team again, perhaps at a national tournament, and you can exact some measure of revenge for your earlier loss.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Cheynem » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:16 pm

The Wisconsin team that won THUNDER at UIUC I believe was open.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Cody » Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:19 pm

Morraine Man wrote:(I agree that VCU was unjustly screwed over)

I think we're all (including me) forgetting that Terrapin '09 was combined with Illinois Open, so it was an open tournament. VCU was unjustly screwed over for entirely different reasons (unless something has changed that I'm not aware of).
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby theMoMA » Fri Apr 29, 2011 5:12 pm

I feel like open tournaments, no matter how difficult, discourage many players on the margins from attending. When you take half of a pretty good team and merge it with half of another pretty good team, the two displaced players from each team probably aren't coming to the tournament.

I also think that regular-season quizbowl, with a few exceptions for true opens, should be an intercollegiate activity. Schools sponsor teams, teams represent schools in competition. That's how it works. Imagine showing up for the first time as a new school and getting trounced by a team that consists of two people who are done with school playing with a player from another school entirely. You'd be thinking: why are these people even allowed to play?! It's completely incongruous with the fundamental function of quizbowl as an intercollegiate activity to allow mixed teams at regular-season events.

Finally, quizbowl isn't about creating the best possible teams from existing players. It's about developing as an individual and a program to the point where four people from the same school can function as an effective team. That is what drives improvement, writing, team-building, and the growth of the game. If most tournaments allow players to band together, we're losing a big part of what makes quizbowl a worthwhile activity and sustains it over time.

I agree that there is a place in quizbowl for mixed teams and non-degree-seeking players. That place is at the open tournaments that happen each year. There are two or three during the summer months alone, and another two or three during the school year. I've even founded one of them. But we need to separate those opens from the regular quizbowl season because it makes no sense to do otherwise.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:12 pm

I think there should be a place for tournaments with open eligibility but not necessarily open difficulty. As someone who will eventually graduate (I hope) and atrophy terribly, I would like to have a place to play non-VCUO or MO-level tournaments.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:29 pm

The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus wrote:I think there should be a place for tournaments with open eligibility but not necessarily open difficulty. As someone who will eventually graduate (I hope) and atrophy terribly, I would like to have a place to play non-VCUO or MO-level tournaments.


I think the level of open tournaments should be left to their writers and editors. The demand from the field will dictate how those events should be.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Fri Apr 29, 2011 7:02 pm

How would you gauge that demand? I suspect doing so would entail giving an inordinate amount of weight on the opinions of people in the in-crowd, since you are rarely going to find a large group of teams that aren't highly involved in the circuit who are going to vocally insist on having closed eligibility (because they don't really know to voice any opinion to you), but you often will find a couple local ex-players who people know and respect who will want to enter an open team into an event and will swing the balance on their own.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:16 pm

Jeremy Gibbs Freesy Does It wrote:How would you gauge that demand? I suspect doing so would entail giving an inordinate amount of weight on the opinions of people in the in-crowd, since you are rarely going to find a large group of teams that aren't highly involved in the circuit who are going to vocally insist on having closed eligibility (because they don't really know to voice any opinion to you), but you often will find a couple local ex-players who people know and respect who will want to enter an open team into an event and will swing the balance on their own.


Look, open events are, if they're going to exist, going to be intended for the masters' crowd. So I don't think taking the opinions of those people into account is giving them an "inordinate" weight; they are the target audience. Let's be clear that we're no longer talking about most regular season events, we're talking about the MO/IO pair and summer events, as I'm taking it for granted that we're basically agreed on the idea that this is about the right amount of open events per year. I'm perfectly happy to play whatever the authors of those events choose to serve up; I obviously enjoy playing on harder questions but if some year someone thinks IO should scale it down, I am also happy to play an IO that looks more like ACF Regionals than like ACF Nationals. Almost by definition open events are going to be more free-form, so let them be whatever the authors want them to be, which they can gauge however they like. I'm not bothered in this case by the notion that those authors might value my opinion more than the opinion of teams not in the target audience.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Fri Apr 29, 2011 10:01 pm

grapesmoker wrote: Let's be clear that we're no longer talking about most regular season events, we're talking about the MO/IO pair and summer events, as I'm taking it for granted that we're basically agreed on the idea that this is about the right amount of open events per year.


Except we have Chris Ray here declaring that all Maryland tournaments are going to be open in perpetuity, plus we all know that when you or Ryan or whomever feels like playing some given tournament you're not going to remember this thread and you're going to explode if called on it.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Fri Apr 29, 2011 10:23 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:
grapesmoker wrote: Let's be clear that we're no longer talking about most regular season events, we're talking about the MO/IO pair and summer events, as I'm taking it for granted that we're basically agreed on the idea that this is about the right amount of open events per year.


Except we have Chris Ray here declaring that all Maryland tournaments are going to be open in perpetuity, plus we all know that when you or Ryan or whomever feels like playing some given tournament you're not going to remember this thread and you're going to explode if called on it.


I'm not going to speak for Ryan, obviously, but feel free to remind me of my promises in public if I don't do as I say. As for what Chris is doing, I don't see him saying what you attribute to him, but he can defend himself without my help.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby DumbJaques » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:18 am

grapesmoker wrote:
Matt Weiner wrote:
grapesmoker wrote: Let's be clear that we're no longer talking about most regular season events, we're talking about the MO/IO pair and summer events, as I'm taking it for granted that we're basically agreed on the idea that this is about the right amount of open events per year.


Except we have Chris Ray here declaring that all Maryland tournaments are going to be open in perpetuity, plus we all know that when you or Ryan or whomever feels like playing some given tournament you're not going to remember this thread and you're going to explode if called on it.


I'm not going to speak for Ryan, obviously, but feel free to remind me of my promises in public if I don't do as I say. As for what Chris is doing, I don't see him saying what you attribute to him, but he can defend himself without my help.



Yeah, what the hell, Matt? I can't believe I actually have to say this for the fourth or fifth time in this thread, but I'm talking about one event that I am editing myself. It sure as hell isn't going to run in perpetuity, or in all likelihood ever again, so what are you talking about? MAQT makes team decisions about what events to host, so in fact this tournament might not even be mirrored at UMD (though for obvious reasons I hope it will be).

Even if I was declaring that this tournament would be run as an open forever and ever, with all non-students presented with baby seal-shaped clubs upon registration, how in the world does that mean I'm "declaring that all Maryland tournaments are going to be open in perpetuity?" I do happen to think allowing case by case non-students to participate in certain events is fine, but as I do not hold any titles of hereditary royalty, opinions I float do not in fact instantaneously acquire force of law; I mean, I happen to think our universal 1/1 chemistry distribution is a bummer and a half, but I'm not about to stealth-edit every set we run so I can slip in surprise 5/5 alchemy.

Further, I a) do not possess the authority to declare all (or any) Maryland-hosted tournaments anything in particular, and b) certainly wouldn't do that even if I did. As far as I know, I used my standard of open, no superteams for one TIT I edited (the first one), where as I recall it wasn't even utilized by anyone. My other TIT was combined with IO, as Cody notes, so it was obviously open (in retrospect I deeply regret combining those tournaments, and would not do so again). I think this year's TIT used that standard, but I wasn't the editor, and again I don't think it ended up being an issue.* Really, didn't Maryland host at least as many non-open tournaments last year as anyone else did? I agree it's a problem that said number was 2, but I don't think wildly miscasting my argument helps us address that issue at all.

*It apparently WAS an issue at the Michigan mirror with the Jerry/Laferbrook team, but allowing such a team to form runs contra to my understanding of the standard, and I wouldn't allow it for a tournament I was in charge of.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:26 am

People can read what you said about how you reject the "binary choice" between open and non-open tournaments, and furthermore the idea that Terrapin magically inherited the open properties of Illinois Open by sharing questions with it like some sort of cross-time zone object-oriented program is utter nonsense. If you're gonna commit to not having every event you run be open, then just do it; I'm more interested in that then in the endless semantic argument you seem intent on having with no one over whether "an event held at Maryland and edited by a member of and most visible face of the Maryland team" constitutes a "Maryland tournament" or not.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby DumbJaques » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:48 am

People can read what you said about how you reject the "binary choice" between open and non-open tournaments, and furthermore the idea that Terrapin magically inherited the open properties of Illinois Open by sharing questions with it like some sort of cross-time zone object-oriented program is utter nonsense. If you're gonna commit to not having every event you run be open, then just do it; I'm more interested in that then in the endless semantic argument you seem intent on having with no one over whether "an event held at Maryland and edited by a member of and most visible face of the Maryland team" constitutes a "Maryland tournament" or not.



It seems like what you're really interested in is blatantly disregarding what I'm actually saying and having a whole separate argument, mostly with yourself. I honestly can't understand half of what you're saying in this response, but I don't need to "commit" to not every event I run being non-open; plenty of them (including those you have read at?) haven't been. If I want to write a set myself and allow non-students to play, Jesus, why can't I? And again, since you failed to address it, why does floating my personal opinion somehow constitute a pronouncement on all future Maryland events? I'm only even guaranteed to BE at Maryland for another year!

I don't know what else to say to you; I don't hold the position you claim I do; if you interpreted my words this way, either they were poorly presented or you did so incorrectly. Why this has to devolve into this bullshit is beyond me, and further I'm not even sure what you're looking to achieve here. Are you trying to get TIT next year to have a flat ban on non-students? I'm not in charge of that, so directing your efforts at me is pointless. Are you trying to get me to change the eligibility of my event? That seems awfully presumptive to me, but I'll listen to a specific argument. Are you trying to dispute the general philosophy of allowing some events to be open, non-superteam? Fine, I might be totally fucking wrong about that being a good thing, but actually have a philosophical argument about the position instead of just going off about how I'm making ludicrous pronouncements I would never make about things I could never do.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matt Weiner » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:52 am

Well yes, what I am doing here is discussing things with the hope of changing them, if that's okay with you. Please put away the B. Octavian Arthur School of Quizbowl Sophistry classic "no one can force me to do anything!" card while you're at it.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:54 am

I think it's important to establish right now that Terrapin should be a closed-eligibility event. At least that much seems like something everyone in this thread agrees with (except Ryan and Bruce).
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Sat Apr 30, 2011 1:02 am

Here's another thing I don't really get. Is there any reason why Chris' open event that's totally not Terrapin and is actually some other event can't be part of IO or whatever its successor is going to be? We've got two open events that have been around for a while and have a claimed place on the docket, IO and MO, and they'll be succeeded by some variation on that theme. Most everyone seems to agree that this is acceptable (someone correct me if this is wrong). Right now it would seem to make a lot of sense to me for Chris to be one of those IO editors and thus fulfill both the desire to work on a regular-difficulty open and avoid creating additional events that may impact the schedule.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby theMoMA » Sat Apr 30, 2011 1:40 am

grapesmoker wrote:Here's another thing I don't really get. Is there any reason why Chris' open event that's totally not Terrapin and is actually some other event can't be part of IO or whatever its successor is going to be? We've got two open events that have been around for a while and have a claimed place on the docket, IO and MO, and they'll be succeeded by some variation on that theme. Most everyone seems to agree that this is acceptable (someone correct me if this is wrong). Right now it would seem to make a lot of sense to me for Chris to be one of those IO editors and thus fulfill both the desire to work on a regular-difficulty open and avoid creating additional events that may impact the schedule.


Agreed 100%. That might help the science editor search as well.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby DumbJaques » Sat Apr 30, 2011 2:30 am

Agreed 100%. That might help the science editor search as well.


I have no idea what this IO situation is about (I didn't know its status was in question at all), but it's difficult for me to imagine how I could ever be the answer to this kind of problem.

But really, if it works best to have my tournament slide into the IO spot for this year, that's fine with me. It's not being made any harder, though.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby theMoMA » Sat Apr 30, 2011 2:45 am

I certainly wouldn't mind having another IO more along the lines of Terrapin/IO from a while back. I also don't know where people are getting the idea that all opens have been impossible. I'm remembering two VCU Open Sundays, a VCU Open Saturday, a Missouri Open, and two Cardinal Classics that have ranged from easy to above-regular-but-not-Nats-level in difficulty.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Nick » Sat Apr 30, 2011 2:53 am

Just to be clear, when we say things are non-open, does that bar the possibility of combining some B-teamers and C-teamers from two different schools so as to avoid a schedule with byes ("scab teams") or to allow them an opportunity to play on a team that isn't just two people or a number of other reasons why people might decide to do this kind of thing. It seems this kind of thing happens somewhat frequently with both high school and college teams/events.

I would advocate that this sort of mixing/combining shouldn't be allowed at "regular" events. And this would stem from an argument somewhat different than the "less open events because superteams are discouraging" line of reasoning. Specifically, this would tend towards the "its an intercollegiate activity and should be maintained/respected as such" argument. Also, those games still count for W-L and ppg for the rest of the field, and that can ultimately have an effect on the outcome of the tournament.

Maybe this is what people had already assumed when they said non-open, but I just wanted to clarify. Thoughts?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Papa's in the House » Sat Apr 30, 2011 11:21 am

This is getting a bit ridiculous, so I'll step in here briefly and speak for the club. The discussion that UIUC as a club has had regarding IO revolved around two things: my (and others') concerns that we don't have deep enough knowledge at this point in time to produce a housewritten IO at an ACF Nats or similar level and the potential of trying to mirror another set for IO weekend. If anyone has made it seem like we're producing IO as a team for the coming year, I don't know why they didn't run that by everyone else at our last meeting this past Tuesday and for now all I can say is that we're not considering housewriting the tournament.

The following is my (and not the club's) opinion: I would imagine that IO this coming year will run at UIUC on someone else's tournament to which we contributed some number of questions/packets instead of paying a mirror fee, but we won't know that until we figure out our hosting schedule*.

*Normally we figure out a rough hosting schedule at the end of the year meeting, which was this past Tuesday. We couldn't figure out what we're hosting at this past meeting because this thread has failed to do what it proposed to do: create a schedule of events on the docket with dates that people intend to have their tournament run. Instead, it has devolved into QB "masters" arguing about the QB theory behind open events (which is an important discussion, but one best moved to a different thread in the Scheduling Reform subforum IMO). The only thing I can definitely say about our hosting schedule this coming year is that we will run Earlybird for HSers (probably in October again like we did last year). Beyond that, I'd like to run two events a semester, but I don't know what since I don't know when events plan to run.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Sat Apr 30, 2011 11:36 am

Papa's in the House wrote:This is getting a bit ridiculous, so I'll step in here briefly and speak for the club. The discussion that UIUC as a club has had regarding IO revolved around two things: my (and others') concerns that we don't have deep enough knowledge at this point in time to produce a housewritten IO at an ACF Nats or similar level and the potential of trying to mirror another set for IO weekend. If anyone has made it seem like we're producing IO as a team for the coming year, I don't know why they didn't run that by everyone else at our last meeting this past Tuesday and for now all I can say is that we're not considering housewriting the tournament.

The following is my (and not the club's) opinion: I would imagine that IO this coming year will run at UIUC on someone else's tournament to which we contributed some number of questions/packets instead of paying a mirror fee, but we won't know that until we figure out our hosting schedule*.

*Normally we figure out a rough hosting schedule at the end of the year meeting, which was this past Tuesday. We couldn't figure out what we're hosting at this past meeting because this thread has failed to do what it proposed to do: create a schedule of events on the docket with dates that people intend to have their tournament run. Instead, it has devolved into QB "masters" arguing about the QB theory behind open events (which is an important discussion, but one best moved to a different thread in the Scheduling Reform subforum IMO). The only thing I can definitely say about our hosting schedule this coming year is that we will run Earlybird for HSers (probably in October again like we did last year). Beyond that, I'd like to run two events a semester, but I don't know what since I don't know when events plan to run.



Well, considering that no one until now has actually provided us with any information about IO for the coming year, everything was just speculation. But regardless, I don't see how anything you're saying here precludes Chris' involvement or having him take the lead, even. In fact, I think it strengthens the case for such a combination. I'm pushing this idea because it seems to me that it satisfies pretty much everyone's demands across the board and eliminates part of the gridlock we're seeing.

Also, sorry if by May 1st(!) we don't have the entire schedule figured out. This discussion is actually an important subcomponent of that. I'm hopeful that we're going to come to a sensible agreement soon at which point specific dates for events will be ironed out.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Cheynem » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:01 pm

Nick, I agree that such scab teams should be heavily discouraged and not allowed at regular tournaments. I would allow for a few exceptions like, in case of sudden drops (to prevent things like double byes or two solo teams of very weak players or silly things like that) or for a little bit of flexibility in house teams, but that's it.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:20 pm

Nick wrote:Just to be clear, when we say things are non-open, does that bar the possibility of combining some B-teamers and C-teamers from two different schools so as to avoid a schedule with byes ("scab teams") or to allow them an opportunity to play on a team that isn't just two people or a number of other reasons why people might decide to do this kind of thing. It seems this kind of thing happens somewhat frequently with both high school and college teams/events.

I would advocate that this sort of mixing/combining shouldn't be allowed at "regular" events. And this would stem from an argument somewhat different than the "less open events because superteams are discouraging" line of reasoning. Specifically, this would tend towards the "its an intercollegiate activity and should be maintained/respected as such" argument. Also, those games still count for W-L and ppg for the rest of the field, and that can ultimately have an effect on the outcome of the tournament.

Maybe this is what people had already assumed when they said non-open, but I just wanted to clarify. Thoughts?


This was discussed in IRC last night and I have to agree with the position advocated by Matt Weiner in that debate which is that if we're going to have rules, they need to be enforced uniformly. If you can put up a house team to balance the schedule, great. Otherwise, the rules are the rules and no one gets a pass. Which is to say that I (and presumably Matt) would both agree with your second paragraph.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Sun Devil Student » Sat Apr 30, 2011 6:38 pm

cvdwightw wrote:I don't have a huge stake in this discussion, because regardless of what community consensus the West Coast is still going to have 4-10 team fields at every tournament that even exists next year.

EACN
EFT
ACF Fall
UVA/Michigan tournament
Delta Burke
Yale tournament

Terrapin
Penn Bowl
SCT
ACF Regionals
MUT
ICT
ACF Nationals

See what I did there? That is a schedule of 13 events completely reserved for college teams. For a regular college team, we can point to thirteen events and say, "these are events that college teams play; you should play them." For a totally novice team with limited funds, we can clearly point to five tournaments: EACN, ACF Fall, Delta Burke, SCT D2, and MUT, and say, "These are the tournaments that you absolutely need to come to, though we'd like to see you at the other ones." [Brief edit: I am under the assumption that EFT will stay at its novice-friendly-but-still-harder-than-novice-level difficulty, which means it's a potentially good baseline for "regular difficulty" and thus should be a "regular college tournament"]

What's the point here? The point is that there are two clear "breaks" in the schedule: March, which covers pretty much every school's spring break, and May, which is during many schools' finals and right before the big high school nationals. Both of these seem like prime times for opens, since the people who want to play in these tournaments aren't necessarily bound by the schedules of their schools.

Secondly, Delta Burke traditionally takes place in mid-to-late November. Delta Burke is also a novice tournament that really shouldn't be played by the best teams. I don't see anything wrong, except perhaps staffing concerns, with combining Delta Burke and Minnesota Open into a single tournament with two divisions, "open" and "regular," playing on two different packet sets.

So really, if you think about it, we have about four or five "open tournament" slots across the calendar: one of the March weekends that doesn't work for the local MUT mirror due to spring breaks (proposed Chicago Nationals prep slot), early-to-mid-May (I'm off-the-cuff proposing moving the Chris Ray tournament here), July (Chicago Open), August (proposed VCU Open/Novice or replacement slot), [November (proposed Minnesota Open slot with "regular" division on Delta Burke set)]. I don't think that having five events at which we tell schools, "you can play these, but be aware that these events aren't regular college events and will feature people who aren't in school anymore" will prohibit circuit growth when (a) there are thirteen other events they ought to be going to anyway, which maybe it's my West Coast apathy but that seems a high enough number, and (b) most of those tournaments are taking place when it's difficult to get a true college field.

I think this makes sense scheduling-wise, ought to satisfy everyone arguing on one side or the other of this thread, and fits in every tournament announced thus far for the upcoming year. Maybe I'm just crazy idealistic, but what do other people think?

Speaking as your fellow Westerner, I think it is a bit idealistic to think that all 13 of these tournaments will be mirrored in our corner of the United States. It would be great to have at least one college and one high school tournament every month at minimum, though. I think ASU would probably aim for 3-4 college and 2-3 high school tournaments (6 total) in the fall semester, e.g. one tournament every other weekend during the last 12 weeks of a standard 16-week semester. (My successors will be taking turns with officering/tournament directing duties, so we should have reasonably good hosting capacity.)

Here's my idea. Have EACN at all three of our region's major settlements (San Francisco, Los Angeles/San Diego and Phoenix), meet in the middle for ACF Fall, host Delta Burke or EFT at the two outlying settlements, come back to the middle for one of those regular tournaments. Since we've been split up for SCT (due to ACUI region boundaries), let's play ACF Regionals together. If our California brothers will agree to this plan, it could work.

Why do I propose bringing our whole region together for ACF Fall? Because I'd like the ASU/UofA novices to have a chance to meet their fellow novices whom they'll be playing for the next 4 years or so and make some connections. We're all in this together (sorry for the cliche) so why not get to know each other and help each other keep our world alive?

One more idea, which I'd like to float to everyone, not just to my California brothers and sisters: Why don't we have ACF Fall before EFT, instead of after? Since EFT is harder than ACF Fall, it seems to make sense to have the chronological order go EACN-ACFFall-EFT instead of EACN-EFT-ACFFall as it has been in the past. If it's because the uber-good players can't sit still all semester waiting for a regular-difficulty tournament they can finally start playing in, then let's stick the UVA/Michigan one between EACN and ACF Fall, so the better players can get their "fix" before sitting out two more novice events to wait for the Yale event (that's THUNDER right?) at the end of the semester. Or maybe even put that UVA/Michigan thing before EACN, before the new members have even been recruited, then have a month's gap to recruit new players for EACN.

So my proposed sequence would be EACN=UVAMichigan > ACF Fall > EFT > Yale=DeltaBurke > winter break > spring stuff. No novice tournaments until Sept. 30 or so because teams need to organize, but it's probably quicker to organize veteran trips.

*EDIT: I'm assuming here that EFT remains at the "between novice and regular" difficulty it has been in the past. If in fact all the regular tournaments are going to be lowered to EFT level, e.g. Yale's and UVA/Michigan's events are going to be identical to EFT in difficulty and only slightly harder than ACF Fall, then the ordering doesn't matter so much anymore. Just as long as you're lowering the "regulars" and not raising EFT, it's just fine if they're all the same.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby grapesmoker » Sat Apr 30, 2011 7:19 pm

There is no real "middle" in the west. There's Southern California, which is about equidistant from Arizona and the Bay, and it makes sense that for maximum attendance events like ACF Regionals should probably occur somewhere in the LA area.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Sun Devil Student » Sun May 01, 2011 12:17 am

grapesmoker wrote:There is no real "middle" in the west. There's Southern California, which is about equidistant from Arizona and the Bay, and it makes sense that for maximum attendance events like ACF Regionals should probably occur somewhere in the LA area.

Right, I was referring to Southern California as the "middle." I guess I should've said it more explicitly.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Charbroil » Sun May 01, 2011 2:57 pm

Incidentally, is it certain that EFT is happening this year?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Ike » Sun May 01, 2011 10:01 pm

I'm writing an IO again for next year. It's looking like Sack of Antwerp is not open next year? - If so, I'll take the spring event.

While on the topic, I'm also interested in collaboration - contact me if interested.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Matthew Jackson » Mon May 02, 2011 12:06 am

Ike wrote:I'm writing an IO again for next year. It's looking like Sack of Antwerp is not open next year? - If so, I'll take the spring event.

While on the topic, I'm also interested in collaboration - contact me if interested.


Given the discussion re: the desirability of opens below "ass-hard" level, and especially given that Chicago's hard tournament is happening in the spring, I feel as though quizbowl as a whole has little will for another open event anywhere near as difficult as last year's IO. Is there a chance it would be closer to Regionals difficulty if it exists?
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby The Tourist » Mon May 02, 2011 5:08 am

As for a response to the OP:

ASU currently has a tournament in a draft stage that we would like to put on hypothetically in late January 2012, or possibly December 2012. We'll post more information as we plot things out further, but we're conditionally shooting to hold an open tournament of varied difficulty, maybe even to say [EANT, Regular Difficulty). The reason for such variance is twofold. One, we want to appeal to experienced high school players, coaches, collegiate novices, and even more experienced players outside the elite tier of teams. Two, we're overstating the range so as to prevent expectations about a single, consistent difficulty, because as a matter of philosophy, we'd like a range of difficulties that appeals to many, but strongly trends towards a separating equilibrium. Such a tournament would aptly suit the needs of the Arizona quizbowl circuit, and hopefully we will find demand elsewhere as well.

Given the inexperience of our university on the quizbowl circuit, we'll have to look at having the packets completed a couple months in advance or more in hopes that we might have a more experienced eye give their approval or disapproval, or see if our packets could be playtested before they are released. We might also consider trying to obtain mirrors for a very generously reduced fee schedule with the intent of establishing the reputation of being able to produce quality packets. All that information will be forthcoming as this project matures.

Kitschy names like the Sun Devil Open have been floated and frowned upon, but that may be our working title until we come up with something better.

EDIT: After reading the other threads in this forum, I thought I'd append that we are very open to the idea of collaborating on this tournament with anyone who would be willing, so please shoot me an e-mail if you have any interest in doing so. My e-mail is my first initial, the first seven letters of my last name, at asu dot edu.
Last edited by The Tourist on Mon May 02, 2011 5:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Events that are on the docket

Postby Ike » Mon May 02, 2011 6:32 am

Given the discussion re: the desirability of opens below "ass-hard" level, and especially given that Chicago's hard tournament is happening in the spring, I feel as though quizbowl as a whole has little will for another open event anywhere near as difficult as last year's IO. Is there a chance it would be closer to Regionals difficulty if it exists?


I can assure you that it will be closer to Regionals and that it will be nowhere near as ridiculous or hard as Illinois Open 2011. To that end, Jonathan Magin has signed on to assist me and whoever else joins the fray in that goal.
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