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SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Fri May 24, 2013 3:53 pm
by shrey96
I will be holding a side event, called SASS (Shreyas's All-Science Set), on Saturday night at the official PACE Hotel. We have produced 7 packets total, which are composed solely of science tossups. The questions have been written by four members of the Metea Valley Scholastic Bowl Team: Ashwin Kannan, Baasit Jamal, Avik Laha, and myself (Shreyas Vissapragada). The fee for playing this tournament is $5 per person.

A short while after the Saturday segment of PACE is completed, the side tournament will be held (on the evening of 6/8/13) at the official PACE Hotel. As of now, this is a doubles tournament, and the goal for this tournament is to have 12 doubles teams playing (so we can do 3 brackets of 4 rebracked into 3 brackets of 4, and then finals). It is a high school only event, and all high school players are welcome to sign up. You can sign up on this google doc: http://tinyurl.com/a2j9qch


The difficulty of this set is around difficult high school level (on par or a tad harder than ACF Fall), and the finals packet is a bit more difficult than that. The average length of tossups will be 6 lines, though a few drop to 5 and a few are at 7. All teams will play the six prelim packets, and the top two teams (by record) will play a one-game final. However, if teams want to play some more, then we could probably accommodate for all teams playing the finals packet in some way.

Distribution:

4/0 Physics
4/0 Chemistry
4/0 Biology
2/0 Non-computational Math
2/0 Common Link/Combination (basically anything involving more than one subject)
1.5/0 Astronomy
1.5/0 Earth Sci
1/0 Computer Science

For a grand total of 20/0. There will also be a tiebreaker for every round in physics/bio/chem.

We could always use more staffers! Currently we have 5 people staffing (including us four writers) - assuming one of us does statwork, that means we'll have enough to sustain 8 teams. As my goal is to have 12 teams, I would like to have 7 staffers total, so please volunteer if you can!

Thanks to Dave Madden and NHBB, buzzers are not our limiting reagent. However, rooms probably will be - so if you're interested in volunteering a room for us to use, please contact me as soon as possible!

Finally, we could always use more help editing the tournament, as we're not all experienced writers. Currently, we have a couple of college-level players looking over stuff, but the set could always be better.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:53 pm
by The Dance of Sorrow
If this isn't the same time as the Schindler's Lit mirror I'll staff this.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 3:19 pm
by shrey96
The field for this event is now closed. Here is the 12 team field:

yolo swag: Ben Zhang, Allan Sadun
Casper: Anton Karpovich, Siva Gangavarupu
Roach-Kumar Condensate: Madhav Kumar, Brandon Roach
The REAL Science players of Illinois: Morgan Venkus, Alex Pandya
KONY: William Ha, Wilton Rao
Seandrasekas Limit: Sean McBride, Luke Vlahos
Fudge Lanka: Chase Fleming, Himendra Perera
Hoch's Force: Matthew Allan, Campbell Fitzhugh
Team Humanities: Jordan Bekenstein, Connor Wood
(We'll think of a team name sometime): Saumil Bandyopadhyay, Robert Jones
People who have names beginning with R (except not really): Kevin Zhou, Ravi Suba
People with really cool last names: Matthew Powers, Akhil Garg

Currently, we have 12 people who are staffing - Joe Su is doing stats work; Nicholas Karas, Eric Mukherjee, Eric Xu, Billy Busse, Ankit Aggarwal, and Dylan Minarik all volunteered to staff (they'll probably all moderate); and five members of my team (including myself) will moderate/keep stats as needed.

Expect an email with more tournament details tonight or tomorrow morning!

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 10:39 pm
by shrey96
Standby List:

1. Jonathan Huh
2. Prerak Trivedi
3. Stae Schipper-Reyes
4. Sam Emmerson
5. Sarah Hamerling ($enior Privilege)
6. Brent Morden ($enior Privilege)


(if this list makes it to 8, then I MAY consider expanding the field because 16 is a workable number; however, there are no guarantees)

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:44 pm
by shrey96
Buzzers are graciously being provided by David Madden and NHBB.

Currently, we have five rooms and need six, which is a problem. Since we're now going to be ordering pizza at the tournament to be consumed at re-bracketing time (at an extra cost of $8 for 3 large slices), that will be the incentive - if you can offer your room for us to use, we will give you free pizza. Pizza is already free for staffers, but if anyone could offer a room anyway, we would be super grateful.

Room List:
1. Shreyas V
2. Ashwin K
3. Dylan M
4. Nicholas K
5. High Tech's Room
6. (Most probably) Scott B

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:11 am
by The Dance of Sorrow
Conor Reilley and I are sharing a room for this tournament that might be willing to accommodate people in. I should have it confirmed some time Thursday. We like free food.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:26 am
by njsbling
We can use my room if my roommates are OK with it.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:58 pm
by JHuh33
Shreyas,

Could you add me (Jonathan Huh) and one Prerak Trivedi to the standby list?

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:32 pm
by Sima Guang Hater
Hey guys, I can staff this. I promise witty commentary and poorly-decided protests on the spot.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 3:31 am
by Ithaca Cricket Ump
I should be able to read for this. Let me know if you need my help so I know what the plan's going to be. (Drop a line to [email protected]).

--Scott

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 8:15 am
by dollmi
If anyone could send a message with the final details as to when/where players should meet for this, I would appreciate it. Two players from my team signed up, and they did not receive the email.

Thanks!

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 6:26 pm
by shrey96
So players, staffers, and standby players should meet in the hotel lobby from 7-7:30. The first round is scheduled to start at 7:30.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Sun Jun 09, 2013 1:55 am
by shrey96
So this happened. The Roach-Kumar Condensate team made it through the entire tournament without losing a single match to be crowned the ultimate SASSmasters. I'll make a full post about this when I get access to a computer

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 4:32 am
by shrey96
First off, I'd like to thank everyone who came to the event - players, moderators, staffers, everyone. I sincerely hope everyone had a good time playing even more question after 12+ rounds of PACE on a very eventful Saturday.

In particular, there are a BUNCH of people who really helped me out with this. Thanks to Dylan Minarik, Scott Blish/Ian Drayer, High Tech, and Nicholas Karas for letting us use your rooms for the 3-4 hours the tournament was running - there is literally no way the tournament could have run without your generosity. Thanks to the awesome readers we had - Marianna Zhang, Billy Busse, Eric Mukherjee, Ian Drayer/Scott Blish, Dylan Minarik, and Nicholas Karas. Though the tournament started a lot later than I had intended, it finished mostly on time thanks to the excellent moderating crew we had. Thank you to David Madden and NHBB for providing us with buzzers to run this tournament. Thanks to everyone else that helped staff - members of my own team who scorekept, people who had signed on to moderate and instead ended up keeping score, everyone - thank you for being so understanding and working with us to make the event work. Thank you to the members of the "exhibition teams" that signed on to help fill the spaces that last-minute cancellations left. Special thanks go to Esther Sun, who helped me keep individual stats for the first three rounds, Ben Zhang, who helped me figure out a multitude of logistical things before and during the tournament, and Ian Drayer, who donated quite a few college textbooks as prizes for top scorers, the top two teams, and (of course) the neg prize, which was actually a pretty cool Anatomy coloring book. Ian also gave me some much-needed help with rebracketing.

The set was written by four members of my team: Baasit Jamal, who wrote chemistry and some bio, Ashwin Kannan, who wrote earth science, computer science, some common links, the tiebreakers, and some physics, Avik Laha, who wrote astronomy, math, and some common links, and myself, who wrote some physics, a bit of bio, and reworked a lot of chemistry, physics, and astronomy.

The set was edited by five people: Abid Haseeb, who edited much of the chemistry, Billy Busse, who edited all the physics, Andrew Wang, who helped out with some physics and bio, Nicholas Karas, who helped with astronomy and math, and Eric Mukherjee, who edited some bio, some compsci, some earth sci, and some common links.

As for how the tournament ran, I apologize that it started around 8:15. I didn't know the staffer meeting on Saturday would go so late, and the multitude of logistical things required to do before a tournament took much longer than I had anticipated. It was my first time running a quizbowl event in any sense, so again, I apologize with how we started off and I'm grateful to everyone who helped us move as quickly as possible towards the end. After that, though, the tournament seemed to run quickly and smoothly, with a small hitch when it came to rebracketing (though I hope the pizza and good company was enough to entertain people during that period). This is largely due to the excellence of the moderators and staffers, but it's also a product of how good the players were (the Roach-Kumar Condensate put together a 150-20 win in a Round 2 match that was reportedly six minutes long).

I am interested to hear people's opinions about the set. This was the first time three of our four writers had ever written questions, and I am definitely not what most would consider "experienced" at this point, so feedback is welcome and greatly appreciated. I asked a couple of people throughout the tournament, and I pretty much received two responses - "they were pretty good, with the occasional 'eh' question" or "they were pretty bad, with the occasional 'eh' question." I'm extremely curious as to what people though of this set, what questions they liked, what questions they hated, which common links weren't as ill-conceived as the rest, etc. One complaint I did hear consistently was that the set could have been harder. Though we did make clear that it would be ACF Fall level, I think the depth of the field warranted questions that were tougher, so I apologize for that. The set will be posted online sometime in the coming days.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:03 pm
by Sima Guang Hater
This set was a very good first effort. The questions I edited were largely on interesting topics, but often had either clues that weren't very helpful or were completely out of order. Here's an example
Before edit wrote:Inspired by the computer language SIMULA, this language was intended to be a multipurpose language, usable in any environment. It is now used in various applications, examples of which are device drivers, systems software, embedded software, and entertainment software. Unlike Java, this language supports pointer arithmetic, in which a pointer’s address is changed by applying arithmetic operations. This programming language was developed by the Danish computer scientist Bjarne Stroustrup in 1979 at Bell Labs. Name this computer language, which was originally named C with Classes and was renamed in 1983.
ANSWER: C++ <AK>
The second sentence of this tossup is totally useless, and there's a lot of filler and non-clues in this question. Here's the edit, which was done very hastily on my part (with help from Rob Carson):

After edit wrote: * This language was the first to use the RAII idiom, which avoids deadlock by tying resource management directly to initialization and destruction. Like Leda, this programming language often shows the curiously recurring template pattern. Its creator asserted that "what you don't use, you don’t pay for" in explaining its "zero overhead principle." Inspired by the computer language SIMULA, this language supports multiple inheritance, operator overloading, and pointer arithmetic, in which a pointer’s address is changed by applying arithmetic operations. This programming language was developed by the Danish computer scientist Bjarne Stroustrup in 1979 at Bell Labs. Name this computer language, which was originally named C with Classes and was renamed in 1983.
There's a particular style to writing questions that takes some time to master; what kinds of clues are helpful (not wikipedia whenever possible), what kinds of clues are interesting, how to arrange them both within a sentence and within the question as a whole, and how to make the question flow are all elements of this. I'm sure if you had more time to work with an editor and learn as you went along, this set would have been much better; I hope all of you keep writing and eventually develop your abilities because you clearly have the drive to do so.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:23 pm
by KnicksRule
Could you post the sets online ?

User was reminded to enable a signature. --Mgmt.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 1:59 am
by shrey96
KnicksRule wrote:Could you post the sets online ?
I sent the packets to the database for posting; it should be up in a bit.
The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus wrote: a lot of filler and non-clues in this question
Yeah...that's something I was trying to deal with when rewriting physics and chemistry tossups before sending those off for editing. But my depth of knowledge on things like Earth Science and Computer Science is (to say the least) not great, so it was much tougher for me to look over those and catch the filler sentences before shipping to editors. I hope there weren't very many questions like that pre-edited form during the tournament.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 7:17 pm
by Urech hydantoin synthesis
Did you compile stats for this tournament?

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 7:29 pm
by shrey96
I haven't gotten around to compiling all the stats yet (I'll start on that tonight), but I checked and I have all the statsheets from Rounds 1-6, as well as the finals between Roach-Kumar Condensate and yoloswag. I'll probably only compile separate prelim and playoff stats, though - the Maggie Walker players left during rebracketing, so I assume it's going to be tough to get overall stats.

PS: For anyone interested, the set is now on the database!

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:46 pm
by Lighthouse Expert Elinor DeWire
There were some issues with hoses and early stocks, but that improves with practice.

These particularly striked me:

Round 4, question 15
Viete’s formula can be used to compute...
There's Viete's formula and Vieta's formula (the former of which I wasn't aware of until that evening)

Round 5, question 16
All animals which fall under this classification have pharyngeal gill slits, a hollow nerve cord...
This clue specifically refers to chordates and not all deuterosomes.

Obviously I didn't like questions I got hosed on, but for the most part, I enjoyed this set,.

Re: SASS (Science Side Event) - 6/8/13 @ PACE

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 3:01 pm
by jonpin
pandabear555 wrote:There were some issues with hoses and early stocks, but that improves with practice.

These particularly striked me:

Round 4, question 15
Viete’s formula can be used to compute...
There's Viete's formula and Vieta's formula (the former of which I wasn't aware of until that evening)
More specifically:
Viète's formula is the thing that gives you 2/pi. Vieta's formulas are the things that give you roots of polynomials. They are both named after the same guy, but the latter generally (though not exclusively) uses the non-accented form.