Saturday, July 19, 2008
The Vancouver Estival Trivia Open (VETO) is the nation's longest-running annual quiz bowl tournament. There will again be a mirror in Toronto, and possibly (but only at a later date) a championship match via telephone between the site winners. This web page will be kept up to date with the most current information.
Also check out the VETO weblog at http://veto.caql.org
July 17: There will be no Trans-Canada Championship Match between the two site winners on the evening of the tournament. There may possibly be one later.
July 16: We'll start at 9:00 a.m. in Vancouver, in room 158 of the I.K. Barber Learning Centre at UBC.
July 13: A tentative, proposed Vancouver schedule listing actual teams has been posted
July 10: With a third UBC team, we now have 8 teams in Vancouver. This means we'll be running three simultaneous games in all rounds except the last two. See Format section for schedule. We may also have to start at 8:00 a.m.
July 4: A few prizes have been listed for Vancouver.
July 3: We have 7 teams signed up to play in Toronto.
July 2: We have 7 teams signed up to play in Vancouver.
June 25: The Vancouver location will be UBC's I.K. Barber Learning Centre.
June 24: The
Vancouver location has moved to
the University of British Columbia (instead of SFU).
The Toronto location will be the Bahen Centre, the same building as last year.
VETO will be run "guerrilla" style, meaning:
VETO will be free of charge at both sites.
See the CAQL results page for links to full reports on previous VETOs and their mirrors in Ontario.
However, recognizing that people come to VETO with vastly different levels of experience, we'd like to give priority to those who have a history of providing good questions in the tossup/bonus format.
So instead of accepting teams on a "first come, first served" basis until space fills up, this is what we'll do:
Even if your team doesn't write questions, we expect you to have enough familiarity with the quiz bowl format to be able to staff games during your bye rounds.
A team can have any number of players, but no more than four can play at a time. If you don't have a full team of four, we can match you up with other players. Solo teams are OK, too: we'll set the schedule so that other teams will have byes and you won't have to staff more than one room by yourself.
In VANCOUVER, the size of the field is capped at 8 teams.
In TORONTO, the size of the field is capped at 12 teams.
TORONTO teams as of July 1:
Note that VETO will be on the same day as the Chicago Open.
For quiz bowl tourists, here is how VETO fits into the North American summer weekend quiz calendar:
goes directly from downtown Vancouver to UBC every 15 minutes on
Saturdays, and takes about 30 minutes.
The Barber Centre is one block from the bus loop.
Transit fares are $2.50 for 90 minutes of travel anywhere on the system, including buses, SkyTrain, and SeaBus.
road, using Yahoo!'s directions but more realistic (longer) times,
UBC is about:
3 hours from Seattle;
9 hours from Eugene, Oregon;
18 hours from Berkeley, California;
24 hours from Los Angeles, California, or Las Vegas, Nevada;
39 hours from Tulsa, Oklahoma, or Chicago;
60 hours from Fairbanks.
If you're driving, the closest place to park is the North Parkade, 6115 Student Union Blvd, one block from the Barber Centre. Parking costs $4 for the whole day.
Vancouver International Airport is a premier global gateway served by more than 40 airlines with scheduled direct flights from 31 communities in British Columbia, another 33 locations elsewhere in North America, 12 cities in Asia/Pacific, and 3 cities in Europe.
Devotees of Southwest Airlines or JetBlue may prefer to fly to Seattle/Tacoma and then take the Quick Shuttle or rent a car. Non-residents of Canada should have no problem driving an American rental car across the border, but Canadian residents aren't allowed to do this. Also keep in mind that even if it's cheaper to fly to Sea-Tac, if you factor in the time and money you spend on the 3-4 hours ground transportation each way, it may work out to be more worthwhile to take Air Canada or WestJet or another airline directly to Vancouver.
For lunch, there are a variety of food options in the Student Union Building, across the street from the Barber Centre:
See below for other stuff to do in Vancouver, and places to stay.
Games will be conducted according to NAQT rules, except that:
It is to your advantage to print out and bring a copy of the rules. If some discrepancy occurred in a game and you want to protest it, it's a lot easier to convince a judge if you can point at the text that justifies your case, rather than to point into the air and say "I think the rules say..."
In VANCOUVER, here is a tentative proposal for the 8-team round-robin schedule. On the right, the table shows which team will bring the packet for that round (either their own original packet or one from Toronto), and which other teams will help in staffing the round.
Time Room 192 Room 193 Room 194 pack help ---- -------- -------- -------- ---- ---- 9:30 UBCA-UBCC BRRG-UBCB B2B.-UofO | FrSd SFUJ 10:00 BRRG-SFUJ UBCC-UofO FrSd-UBCB | B2B. UBCA 10:30 B2B.-UBCB FrSd-UBCC SFUJ-UofO | UBCA BRRG 11:00 UBCC-UBCB SFUJ-B2B. UBCA-UofO | BRRG FrSd 11:30 UBCA-BRRG FrSd-SFUJ B2B.-UBCC | UofO UBCB 12:00 SFUJ-UBCC UBCA-B2B. BRRG-FrSd | UBCB UofO ---------------------------------------------------------------- Lunch break (across the street at the SUB) ---------------------------------------------------------------- 1:30 BRRG-UofO UBCA-FrSd SFUJ-UBCB | UBCC B2B. 2:00 FrSd-UofO BRRG-B2B. UBCA-UBCB | SFUJ UBCC 2:30 FrSd-B2B. UBCB-UofO ......... | SFUJ UBCA BRRG UBCC 3:00 BRRG-UBCC UBCA-SFUJ ......... | B2B. FrSd UBCB UofOLet me know if you see any problems with this schedule or just dislike anything about it.
After the preliminary rounds, the teams will be ranked on their performance, first by win-loss record, and in the case of a tied win-loss record, then by average normalized points per game (ANPPG). ANPPG is computed as follows: In each round, find the mean total score of all games played during that round. Then, for every team in every game in every round, compute the normalized score by dividing the actual score by the mean total score in the round. A team's ANPPG is the mean of the normalized scores over all of the games it played.
The top two teams will advance to the finals, which will consist of
one or two rounds.
This will be a best-of-three series in which
the round-robin game
between the two teams will count retroactively
as the first game of the series.
These rounds will be played on packets from the other site.
Detailed question guidelines are on a
separate web page,
which includes a section with
useful links categorized by subject.
Rounds will be untimed, with 20 tossups played in each. But you will have to write more than 20 tossups and 20 bonuses, because:
|Science, Math, Technology||3 4|
|Current Events||2 3|
|Fine Arts||1 2|
|Religion, Philosophy, Mythology||1 2|
|Social Science||1 2|
|Popular Culture, Games, Sports||1 2|
|General Knowledge||0 3|
Canadian content quota:
Of the first 20 tossups, at least 4 must refer to Canadian people, places, things, events, and created works. The same goes for the first 20 bonuses. But overall, don't exceed 50% Canadian content in your packet. Your Canadian questions should also cover diverse subject areas and not be clustered in Geography or Literature, etc.
Tossups should include at least two separate clues, preferably at least four. Multiple-choice bonuses should be used sparingly, if at all, and should provide at least four choices.
In order that we can keep to a reasonable schedule, questions must not be too long:
For our further amusement, we encourage rounds with hidden themes. In the past three years, we've had:
Aim for a difficulty level approximating that of Division I NAQT sectionals.
Please do read the separate packet guidelines page, because it offers many helpful tips. If you can't think of what to write about, we have loads of categorized links to websites you can browse to find possible material for questions.
The Stanford archive contains most of the question packets used at VETO in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007. You might note that some writers did not follow all of the guidelines. :) We've taken the list of answers that have come up in VETO in 2005 through 2007 and categorized them by subject. Try to write about things that are not on this list.
Anyone may sponsor a prize and select a winner according to any criteria. In previous years, we've had up to 22 prizes awarded to individuals and teams, though last year there were only three in Vancouver.
Contact us if you're sponsoring a prize that you want listed on this web page. If you want to encourage others to write questions of your favourite type or on your favourite (broadly defined) subject, then announcing a prize here is a good way to do so.
Here is the list so far of prizes in Vancouver:
|Worst repeat||a broken record||Peter of FARSIDE|
|Best question on food from non-animal sources||a gluten-free, fat-free, GMO-free, vegan ReBAR 100% organic energy bar||Peter|
|West Coast Dominatrix of Relevant Knowledge||handcuffs||Peter|
Special events to entice you:
Read or listen to the French consul's poetic tribute to Vancouver: Parler de Vancouver, / C'est vancouversifier.
See http://www.tourismvancouver.com for more information about Vancouver, including links to special promotions.
While Vancouver has a reputation for heavy rainfall, it does not rain much in the summer. Average precipitation during July is below that of seven of the 10 largest United States cities (by 2000 census population), the exceptions being the desert or semi-desert cities of Los Angeles, Phoenix, and San Diego. And of course, during July, Vancouver has more hours of daylight than any American city outside of Alaska. On VETO day, sunset will occur at 9:08 p.m.
The Pacific Spirit Hostel on the UBC campus would be the most convenient place to stay. Including taxes, single rooms are $37.29 per night, and double rooms are $74.58 per night.
If you want to stay closer to other city attractions, there are quite a few reasonably priced hotels in downtown Vancouver. Try findinghotel.com for looking up accommodation online, but do not be tempted by cheap rates in the East Hastings neighbourhood. This is identified by the V6A postal prefix area, which has the lowest median income in all of Canada.
Another cheap option is a dorm bed at the HI Vancouver Downtown hostel, which we've checked out and found is pretty good as hostels go. It is in a nice neighbourhood in downtown Vancouver.
"A lot of Imperialist ladies asked me to tea to meet schoolmasters
from New Zealand and editors from Vancouver, and that was the
dismalest business of all."
- John Buchan, The Thirty-Nine Steps
Back to CAQL events page.
Webmaster e-mail: caql -at- caql -dot- org