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The world’s biggest (mystery) quiz

January 22, 2013 in Quizzes

big-big-quiz“On a day in March…” begins one of the explanatory blurbs on thebigbigquiz.com, the home site of what promises to be not just Ireland’s but “the world’s biggest table quiz”.

Furthermore, it will all be for charity, with each cause involved being promised more than €3,500 from the night of the quiz.

Aside from those facts, I can’t tell you much more as the site is vague to the point of fogginess. There’s talk of the questions being broadcast on television to “over 1,000 venues” and “100,000 participants”, which sounds great.

So far I have been unable to get any more info. Emails have been sent to the address on the site and via their Facebook page, to no avail. A phone call to the number listed on the site goes through what sounds like a forwarding process before ending with an engaged tone. I couldn’t even leave a message. 🙁

So far, this is a quiz with way more questions than answers.

Answers from Tartu

November 12, 2012 in EQC, Quizzes

Here are the answers to the questions I posted during the weekend.

So how do you think you did? Could you keep up with the quizzers at the European Quizzing Championships?

If so, drop me an email and I’ll sort you out for a place on next year’s squad. 🙂

Update: Fancy giving the full Individual Quiz a go? Click here to download the paper (PDF, 5.4 MB).

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Mistakes on a plane?

November 11, 2012 in EQC, Quizzes

Let’s hope not.  I’m writing to you now from about 20,000 feet, or whatever height Ryanair cruise at.  Alas, due to flight schedules, the three of us who departed Dublin at 6am on Friday, Padraic, Derek and myself, are now homeward-bound on Sunday morning.  Only David and Lorcan remain in Tartu to wear the green jersey in the Pairs event.

Day 2 in Tartu (assonance?) was a very busy one for the Irish competitors.  It began at 10am with the Individual Quiz, in the main hall.

You could say each round in that quiz is general knowledge.  You’d be more accurate though if you said each round is completely specific knowledge.  There’s very little general knowledge here.  For example, a question in round 6, asking for the name of the religious depictions of Jesus and the holy family in the Eastern Orthodox Church, stood out like a sore thumb.  It was a bit easy.*

Anyway, I outlined how we got on in yesterday’s post so let’s move on to the afternoon’s exciting event: Ireland’s first foray into knockout quizzing.

After the qualifier round of the Nations Cup, the top eight teams play out semi-finals (as in, 1-4 go for the main title and 5-8 try to get to the Plate final).  Similarly, the top eight teams in the Aspirational Cup (B teams etc and ad-hoc teams) have semi-finals and I actually got to MC one of these on Friday night.

This is a bit of an anomaly but the teams who finished 9th and 10th in the Nations Cup qualifier also get to have a knockout quiz.  This year, these teams were Germany and Ireland. Read the rest of this entry →

Questions from Tartu

November 10, 2012 in EQC, Quizzes

Individual quiz tablemates: Me, Kay, David and Jakob.

Righto. After my snafu earlier with the backspace key, I feel I owe you all some questions.

First, I need to report on how we did in this morning’s Individual Quiz. This event sees us all taking part on our own (the name would imply that, wouldn’t it?!) in eight rounds, the first seven each having 12 questions and the last round featuring 16. There are no themes or category rounds. Each one is mixed-bag/general knowledge/whatever you want to call it.

Table places are assigned based on the number we each have in the bottom-right corner of our name tags. Funnily enough, I ended up at the same table (11) as my colleague on the Irish team, David Fay. There we were joined by Kay from Norway and Jakob from Denmark.

At the end of each round, you simply swap your answer sheet with the person across the table from you, Jakob in my case, and the answers are then called out from the stage. We were all of roughly the same standard which was nice as it meant we did a lot of sympathising with each other after certain rounds. On one occasion, I “top-scored” with 2/12, whilst the others all got 1. Sufficed to say, we had a bit of fun with the whole thing.
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Day 1: To Tartu we go

November 10, 2012 in EQC, Quizzes

The Irish team: Padraic Fanning, John Nolan, Derek Cray, David Fay and Lorcan Duff.

This year’s European Quizzing Championshipsare taking place in Tartu, Estonia. Ireland are respresented at this quiz festival by a team of five people: myself, Drek Cray, Lorcan Duff, Padraic Fanning and David Fay.

Getting to Tartu is a challenge in itself. It’s Estonia’s second city but Estonia isn’t that big a place. Thus, while Tartu does have an airport, it is only serviced by flights from two destinations – Tallinn and Helsinki. I didn’t see the point of flying to Tallinn and then on to Tartu, when Tallinn is all of two hours away by road and, unfortunately, there is no easy way to get from Ireland to Helsinki. Well, certainly no way at times that suited us.

Two of the team arrived in Estonia on Thursday night, staying in Tallinn before making their way to Tartu yesterday morning. Myself, Padraic and Derek were even more efficient. We left Dublin at 6.45am and flew to Riga, the captial of Latvia. Air travel can be a bit mysterious at times. Why does it take practically an hour to fly Dublin-London and it took us just 2 hours and 35 minutes to fly from Dublin to Riga?
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Answers to head of the class (perhaps)

September 30, 2012 in Culture, Quizzes

So, here’s a confluence of coincidental events. I’ve owed you, the reader, the answers to the picture round I included in last Wednesday’s post, Head of the class, for a few days now.

Of course, you know my method of naming articles.  This one, when it arrived, would be called ‘Head of the class answers’ or something like that.

So what? Well, the thing is, I got some great news last night.  This little site of mine has made the final five for the Popculture section of the Irish Blog Awards. Woot!

So… I may actually be ‘Head of the class’ in this category. See what I did there?

But seriously folks, the other nominated blogs are all excellent and it’s an honour to be included in such a list.  The awards themselves are being presented on October 13th so, if nothing else, it’ll give myself and Mrs Tablequiz.net an excuse to book a babysitter and go away for the night. 😉

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SongPop and other good news stories

September 9, 2012 in Culture, Quizzes

SongPop, a cause for good or an addictive time sink?  Well, truth is, it’s both.  So I guess it comes down to your attitude to addictive time sinks and, generally speaking, I love them!  Judging by my Facebook wall, loads of other people feel the same about it.

For those who are uniniated, SongPop allows you to challenge one of your friends to a quickfire audio quiz, in which the intros to five songs need to be identified in as quick a time as possible.  The app awards scores based on the time (to a tenth of a second it appears to me) it takes and someone wins.  Simple as that.  Straight after winning or losing, you have the opportunity to rechallenge your friend.  At this point you also can decide what category the next five songs will belong to.

It’s an inherently social game and, while you can ask the app to randomly match you up with an opponent, it makes most sense (and is most fun) when you challenge your own friends to a match.  This is probably why the app is so popular on Facebook, as it piggybacks your friends list, informing you of who’s already playing the game and/or allowing you to suck invite new friends in.

If you like audio rounds at quizzes, you should definitely check it out.

Blog awards latest: Some great news this morning – tq.net has been shortlisted for two categories in the Irish Blog Awards!  It’s made the cut in the ‘Best Sport/Recreation’ and ‘Best Pop Culture’ sections.   Still, there’s no need to dig out a tuxedo just yet; the remaining nominees will be distilled further at the end of the month when the Finalist List will be published.  Keep your fingers crossed!

Finally, up Galway! Here’s hoping to the first half of Connacht’s possession of the All-Ireland senior trophies being in place by this evening.

Come and have a go

August 22, 2012 in Quiz Show, Quizzes

You probably ought to be able to at least name these three before you try the Championship Challenge.

Do you know your GAA facts? Would you like to win tickets to go to the All-Ireland semi-finals or even the finals themselves?  If so, you probably should give the Championship Challenge, which is running on Eircom’s GAA-based Experience More, site a go.

It’s a simple, quick-fire quiz in which you have to attempt to answer five questions in as short a time as possible.  Get 3/5 right and you’re entered into a weekly draw.  Get all five right and you’re in with a shot of topping one of the site’s four leaderboards (one for each province) which will entitle you to some fancy-shmancy corporate tickets to one of the All-Ireland finals.

To be honest, you’d have to be living under a stone to have missed this quiz, given the amount of promotion it’s received throughout the Summer, on tv and radio.  Sure, give it a go.  It’ll be one way for a Galway hurling fan to get a ticket.

In other challenging news, I’d like to wish Stephen Dodding, our surrogate Irishman (during last year’s European Quiz Championship in Bruges), all the best for his appearance on first episode of the new series of Only Connect.  Yes, I know, he’s already done the show so wishing him well doesn’t make too much sense but, still, let’s hope there’s nothing too embarassing on the tape!

Never mind me – I’m probably just jealous that he got to meet Victoria Coren.  Anyway, the show airs on Monday next, August 27, at 8.30pm on BBC Four.  You should watch it.

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