Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Thursday Quiz Mixes It Up

With the dust settled on the Sixth Season of the Thursday Quiz, it's time to announce our winners!

Congratulations! the brainy, insightful, erudite, and highly attractive Sixth Season Champions -- a category that includes everyone who took the Thursday Quiz since August, but especially applies to:

gs49 -- The defending Fifth Season successfully defends his title. He dominates Season Six by earning five Stars, two of them Gold!

DrSchnell -- The Third Season champion returns with four Stars: a Gold, a Silver, and two Blues!

la gringissima -- A complete collection of Stars -- Gold, Silver, Blue, and Green -- propels la gringissima to her first Top Three season.

Mrs.5000 -- Four stars, two Silver, a green, and a Blue, earn Mrs.5K another fourth-place finish.

Karmasartre -- A Silver and three Greens continue Karma's successful run.

Season Seven: The Sequences

For 60 weeks now, the L&TM5K has hosted a weekly Thursday Quiz. Over that time, it has grown from an eclectic, inconsistently challenging puzzle with a small core of regular enthusiasts into, into, well... an eclectic, inconsistently challenging puzzle with a small core of regular enthusiasts. Except now it's like a tradition or something.

All through that long and storied history, the format has been unchanging... until now. The Seventh Season of the Thursday Quiz unveils a new format: the Sequence Quiz.

It will work like so: You will be given ten items, that you need to be placed in order. For instance, you might get this list:

...and be asked to put those words in numerical order. Except, it will generally be a little harder than that. Give it a try next Thursday, November 20!


It's a simple puzzle, but it's complicated to score. We'll do like this: for every item that you have out of sequence, you will lose 1 point for every step it is out of sequence. Here are some examples, if you are a glutton for punishment:

1 2 4 3 5 6 7 8 9 10 = -2, one point off for both 3 & 4.
1 2 5 3 4 6 7 8 9 10 = -4, one point off for both 3 & 4, two points off for 5.
1 8 3 4 5 6 7 2 9 10 = -12, six points off for both 2 & 8.
If you leave out an item, you'll lose three points and I'll fit the remaining items to your best advantage.

1 2 3 4 6 7 8 9 10 = -3 for leaving out the 5.

2 4 1 6 7 9 10 5 = -18, -6 for leaving out two items, -12 for items out of sequence.

Plausibly Asked Questions:

Why the change?

I want to try out the sequence quiz idea, and three quizzes a week sounds like too much even to me.

But the Stars! What about the Stars?!

Stars will continue the same, with one exception: on sequence Quizzes, Green Stars will be awarded to those who tie OR ARE ONLY ONE POINT BELOW third place.

Is this a permanent change?

If everybody loves it, sure. If everybody hates it, we'll switch back next season if anybody is still around. If everybody's all, like, whatever, then maybe we'll mix it up going forward. We'll see.

Could you explain that scoring system again?



Anonymous said...

You know, your quizzes are great. But your FAQs and rules are REALLY great.

fingerstothebone said...

Oh, I can see it now, all these historical events, please put them in order. Riiiiight!

Michael5000 said...

@In Media: Well, I'm no idiot! Or so I hear!

@Fingers: What, have you been looking at my notes?

d said...

as long as i'm allowed to use my fingers and toes, we'll be ok.

margaret said...

My brain hurts already.

Ben said...

If you're going to make a mistake in your sequence, just don't do it early in the sequence!

Anonymous said...

If there's a "put these sonatas from the Baroque era in chronological order by the birth of the composers" edition of this new quiz, I might just kill you.

Anonymous said...

ps... isn't it Thursday?

Michael5000 said...

@d: Using a friend's fingers and toes is also allowed.

@Margaret: Yeah, mine too.

@Ben: Just don't get the mistaken item too far out of sequence, is the important thing.

@mydog: Whatcha got against baroque sonatas? They are often elegant and charming.

Anyway, yes, it's Thursday. I've now spent about five minutes racking my brain for what you are trying to call my attention to. Did I forget something in real life?

Anonymous said...

You get merit badges for the scoring you will be doing.

I am very interested in how the new format will feel.

You know, if you ever gave a hint/riddle/enigmatic clue about the subject of the coming quiz and encouraged research beforehand (but not during) it would still be challenging and interesting to see if people (me) researched the right things and remembered the research.

I know! It is against the rules, but it could be neat in a way. A riddle for the puzzle. But that's for another time.

Props to the high scorers!

Anonymous said...

"to me" is what I meant to put in the parentheses. I am off my game as well as my rocker.

Anonymous said...

I submit that you'll need be extremely careful in the wording of what you're seeking. Random sequence is a sequence, for instance. Alternatively, you could be uncareful and make many assumptions. That works too.