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#517173 - Thu Mar 18 2010 08:00 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
mehaul Online   content
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Loc: Florida USA
England is my worst subject. I had to carefully read each question, I only triggered a quick hit on a Notting Hill question and still took 177 secs to complete my level's version of the quiz. Did I lose poits by taking so long? I had seven correct.


Edited by mehaul (Thu Mar 18 2010 08:04 PM)
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#517174 - Thu Mar 18 2010 08:03 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: mehaul]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
<< England is my worst subject. I had to carefully read ead question, I only triggered a quick hit on a Notting Hill question and still took 177 secs to complete my level's version of the quiz. Did I lose poits by taking so long? I had seven correct. >>

Seems a fair score for your worst subject.

Prison, I'd like to erase your score this hour and see how you go with a different question set googling. Want to try?

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#517175 - Thu Mar 18 2010 08:15 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
WesleyCrusher Offline

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I think actually Expert and Team Heroes should be treated differently. In Expert, we are looking at who is the best in a certain field. This game is supposed to be played by specialists. It absolutely needs to have stiff time penalties beyond a certain level to ensure a researched 14 doesn't beat an actually known 10.

Team Heroes, I see exactly the opposite way. It is a pretty casual game in which you want to help your team and it should *encourage* doing all you can, including research, to get your team a good score in a category you know little about (which usually means like 80% of them). Without research, this game would mean that on a topic like today's, 99% of non-Australians would either need to mindlessly guess or not play at all - hardly a goal for a game supposed to heighten team spirit and make players contribute something to their team every day, not once per week. I'd not mind if that game were changed to explicitly encourage research - no individual badges or victories are at stake and it's about giving one's best.
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#517176 - Thu Mar 18 2010 08:59 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: WesleyCrusher]
mehaul Online   content
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Loc: Florida USA
Then how about registering visually impaired players and not imposing penalties for high times to those players?
_________________________
"...Tomorrow's come a long way to help you."
Tim Davis 'Your Saving Grace' Steve Miller Band (1969)
"...Yesterday's at least a mile back."
Dale Peters 'Dreaming in the Country' James Gang (1971)

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#517177 - Thu Mar 18 2010 09:09 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: mehaul]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
<< Then how about registering visually impaired players and not imposing penalties for high times to those players? >>

While I completely empathize with such conditions, it's simply not workable. We'd likely have all sorts of people who are completely fine claiming such exemptions with no way to verify. We'd also then have to specifically cater to those with learning disabilities, players with physical disabilities, etc etc. Oh yes, and anyone over 70? Completely unworkable.

I am absolutely confident that the visually impaired have an enormous amount of quizzes and games accessible to them.

I think that in life we all have certain strengths and weaknesses and that we will all encounter playing fields that aren't entirely level for us. There's nothing wrong with that.

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#517178 - Thu Mar 18 2010 09:14 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: mehaul]
mehaul Online   content
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Without google: Alternative Rock
I had to read all the presented lyrics carefully to be able to get a correct response (9/15) and it too 235 secs (around 15 secs per question)to end up with21 points. The player above me in the results only had 4 correct and got triple my points at 65!(at 3 secs per question)
I knew more than double without look ups than that person but got 1/3 the points or recognition.
_________________________
"...Tomorrow's come a long way to help you."
Tim Davis 'Your Saving Grace' Steve Miller Band (1969)
"...Yesterday's at least a mile back."
Dale Peters 'Dreaming in the Country' James Gang (1971)

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#517179 - Thu Mar 18 2010 09:19 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: mehaul]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
Have tweaked the upper limit down a bit.

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#517180 - Thu Mar 18 2010 09:19 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
mehaul Online   content
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Loc: Florida USA
I accept the fact that I'm not going to be the fastest and I really can understand the difficulties you cite. The penalties for high quiz times though are discouraging. All they serve to accomplish is to put the physically able further ahead.
_________________________
"...Tomorrow's come a long way to help you."
Tim Davis 'Your Saving Grace' Steve Miller Band (1969)
"...Yesterday's at least a mile back."
Dale Peters 'Dreaming in the Country' James Gang (1971)

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#517181 - Thu Mar 18 2010 10:00 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
AntonLaVey Offline
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Quote:

Ok, next hour I'm making the following changes to expert:

- graduated time penalty like GMM. Very little penalty for under 120 seconds. Anything over that and the penalty increases at a steeper rate. By 200 seconds it should be entirely prohibitive.

- questions are limited to 2-3 lines.

We'll see how it goes. If it works well for Expert, we'll do the same thing with Team Heroes, which is effectively the same game.




This is awesome. Thanks.

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#517182 - Fri Mar 19 2010 01:50 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: AntonLaVey]
triviapaul Offline
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Registered: Thu May 22 2008
Posts: 998
Loc: Delft<br>The Netherlands
Just brainstorming here: I was wondering whether the flash format can be used in the expert game, with a 10 second time limit for every question.
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#517183 - Fri Mar 19 2010 02:00 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: triviapaul]
triviapaul Offline
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Some more brainstorming: Registered visually impaired members could get a slightly altered visual version of the site (scrambling, randomising letters, blanking out, etc) that would make it very unattractive to seeing people. I am thinking about white letters on white background or such. In winners lists they could be marked with a (VI).
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#517184 - Fri Mar 19 2010 02:21 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: triviapaul]
agony Offline

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I'm missing something there, triviapaul. How would a visually impaired person be able to see white letters on a white background?

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#517185 - Fri Mar 19 2010 05:57 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: agony]
WesleyCrusher Offline

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Posts: 3560
Loc: Germany
Hmmm... how about a completely different idea: There actually is a very simple way of preventing any googling during a game (short of using a second computer which definitely creates HEAVY inefficiency in getting results fast) - a Javascript event called OnBlur can detect the user switching away from the page and do something - ideally submit the quiz (so you can go and google, but by the time you come back, there's no more place to put your answer)!

Now before this gets implemented, however, we should make sure that we meet all interests. We want knowledge to beat research, but players also sometimes want to play with research, especially when playing a very weak topic to help out in Heroes or when confronted with it in GC hardcore and needing 10 correct but knowing only 6.

So - here's the deal. You can decide *game by game* whether you want the anti-googler switched on. If it's on, the Javascript snippet stops you from googling and it will also submit a code with your quiz (to stop cheaters from starting the quiz in "pure" mode but switching JS off in the browser and happily googling away). And if that correct code is received at the other end, your right answers are worth 125 instead of 100.

So with this in place, you can get an 1825 out of a GC set you are really proficient in (15 right in 50 secs). 12 known still gives you 1500 (minus time), the same as you'd get for googling 15 (but that takes longer), so the best you can even hope to beat with perfect, lightning-fast googling skills is a moderately fast 11. On the other hand, when your choice is to randomly click 15 buttons or at least try to research and learn or get that 10 in random Sports statistics for GC Hardcore, play "softie" mode and get 1000-1200 instead of 500.

With that setup, we'd not need the ever-steeper timers anymore, at least not to the extent they are now.

Just make sure that with the protector on, the game screen has a different background color or similarly obvious visual - you should always know in mid-game which variant you are playing. Or, at second thought - just make the protected mode the default and simply let the OnBlur event forfeit the bonus instead of submitting. You start out with it active at all times and when you switch out, away go those points.

Checking off criteria:
- Knowledge rewarded over research skill. Yep.
- Players can choose their mode of play. Yep.
- Knowledgeable, slower players at minimum disadvantage. Yep.
- Adding Fun to the FT games? I'd say so.

What do you all think?

Wes


Edited by WesleyCrusher (Fri Mar 19 2010 06:00 AM)
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#517186 - Fri Mar 19 2010 08:54 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: WesleyCrusher]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
<< There actually is a very simple way of preventing any googling during a game >>

Such a solution would be both very complicated (because onblur triggers every time focus is lost off any element and therefore every change would have to check to make sure focus is on something legit) and also incomplete.

use a laptop next to your desktop (the most obvious workaround).
disable javascript.
use a browser where you have that function disabled.
I bet you anything that some browsers would act weird or inconsistently with onblur too.

Also, players without javascript couldn't even play.

I think it's best to just assume that googling is here to stay, and use penalties that discourage it.

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#517187 - Fri Mar 19 2010 09:11 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
Starlord Offline
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Registered: Sat Apr 26 2008
Posts: 757
Loc: Cornwall UK
I'm game for pretty much any topic, I get some pretty abyssmal scores in some subjects. What slows me down is having to wade through a virtual epic novel just to find the question.

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#517188 - Fri Mar 19 2010 09:14 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: WesleyCrusher]
agony Offline

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To me, Wesley, that all seems unnecessarily complex.

The way things are set up right now, a moderately fast person who knows the subject will beat a Googler who does not. A slow person who knows the subject can be beaten by a Googler who doesn't. A very slow person who knows the subject slightly can be beaten by a very fast person who doesn't know it at all and just guesses.

It seems to me that if you are very slow, for whatever reason, playing timed games is not the best use of your competitive time. You need to be moderately knowledgeable and moderately fast to win a timed game, and that seems reasonable.

Saying, in effect, "timed games are not fair to me because I am slow" is the same as the googlers saying "knowledge games are not fair to me because I don't know anything." If you are very slow, or must look up every answer, then you're just not competitive in this game. You can still play, but not win, or you can do some of the other things available onsite.

I'm not unsympathetic to the problem of being a competitive visually impaired person. My son is legally blind, and had to resign himself early to the reality that there are some things he just cannot do quickly. Technology can be some help - increased font size and increased contrast help with some games. A good memory and the ability to cut to the heart of a question also really help. In real life he gets large print exams and some extra time to write them. In virtual life, online, he competes as best he can with sighted people and cherishes the times when his quick wits win out over someone else's good vision.

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#517189 - Fri Mar 19 2010 09:31 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: agony]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
Best post of the week Agony. Precisely my thoughts on the topic.

It's the same as with our badges. Some of our badges can be won through knowledge, some through speed, some through perseverance, and some through a combination of these. It is not reasonable IMO to assume that everyone will have an equal opportunity to win each badge.

I fully understand that there are a lot of FT badges that I personally (the creator) would have no hope of ever obtaining. In a way, that adds value to our badge system and imbues them with at least some meaning.


Edited by Terry (Fri Mar 19 2010 09:32 AM)

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#517190 - Fri Mar 19 2010 09:49 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: agony]
lesley153 Offline
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Registered: Fri Sep 07 2007
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Loc: Bedford England UK           
I think we've agreed that there are a lot of explanations for slow times, and nobody can know for certain why someone else is slower than they are. Rusty fingers, steam-driven computers, bad eyesight, mid-quiz crashes. I've been in the middle of a quiz and answered the phone. I've even left a quiz to let someone in to read a meter, then gone back to the quiz.

I do like the idea of keeping questions down to a few lines. Questions the size of small novels are borderline OK in timed quizzes if you've seen the question before, and can remember what you're meant to be looking for. Sometimes you plough through one of these never-ending questions, and find that you can ignore everything except the last sentence - and they're not OK at all!

Going back to the original question, I don't know why people get so angry about other players googling. Once you start thinking about tweaking software to impede googling, you may as well forget the idea of open online quizzing, and just do the quizzes in a classroom. With invigilators.

"... he competes as best he can with sighted people and cherishes the times when his quick wits win out over someone else's good vision."
Good for him!


Edited to add:
Terry's post wasn't there when I started typing mine!


Edited by lesley153 (Fri Mar 19 2010 09:51 AM)
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#517191 - Fri Mar 19 2010 10:26 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: lesley153]
AntonLaVey Offline
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Registered: Sat May 03 2008
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Loc: California USA
Quote:

I think we've agreed that there are a lot of explanations for slow times, and nobody can know for certain why someone else is slower than they are. Rusty fingers, steam-driven computers, bad eyesight, mid-quiz crashes. I've been in the middle of a quiz and answered the phone. I've even left a quiz to let someone in to read a meter, then gone back to the quiz.





True, but when players with a track record of being fast take four minutes on a 15 question game, there is Googling involved. I'm just saying.

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#517192 - Fri Mar 19 2010 11:22 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: AntonLaVey]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
I think that the site would be more enjoyable to googlers too if we could discourage it. It must be tiring having to google around everywhere looking for answers. I suppose once you start googling you can't really stop otherwise your scores plummet.

Seems a much better experience to me to just score poorly, learn from it and try to improve your scores over time.

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#517193 - Fri Mar 19 2010 11:38 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
WesleyCrusher Offline

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Hmm... it seems that idea was just too radical. Okay. Maybe a much simpler idea than all this technical stuff that would also help address at least one legitimate concern of slower players:

Since it's usually unlikely a slow player with a handicap of some sort will win a division (there's almost always a faster player who knows just as much), why should we make them lose FT points for being slow as well? Can't we simply calculate the participation bonus as if the time penalty were a flat 1 in all games? You still couldn't win by playing slowly, but at least you'll get your points.

Rest of the post is just a technical remark. Read or ignore at your own peril

Wes

-----------------------------

On the technical side, the problem would actually be quite solvable - OnBlur checks if the focus is gained/lost by the element whose property you check. If you check on form, you'd have the desired effect - all activities inside the quiz form are legit, all outside are not.

Also, the "no Javascript" issue would be countered by the coded number the script is to return - essentially, you'd pass the script a random large number when generating the page, let it run a few calculations not easily or quickly simulated manually and check back the result on submit. (Challenge-response authorization). Without Javascript running, you'd always get back a default and it could be handled with game logic from there.

The only unsolvable issue is the laptop next to the main screen, but I'd really like to see someone post any score worth mentioning that way. Consistently switching attention and hands between two screens sets of input devices is not something I could associate with fast googling.

So, possible, likely yes. Maybe we could use it for one specific GM game someday instead of a sitewide control - the "what you really know" game .
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#517194 - Fri Mar 19 2010 11:58 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
Terry Offline

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Registered: Wed Dec 31 1969
Posts: 17514
Loc: USA
It's an interesting thought Wes, although I'm pretty certain it would cause more problems than it would solve. The biggest is that you'd need to play with javascript enabled in your browser, otherwise players could just turn it off before playing to google.

Then there's the problem of someone accidentally clicking outside of the window, or hitting alt-tab for some reason, or some other system dialog box that pops up which takes away focus, etc. I can just envision a stream of complaints coming in "It told me I cheated and googled, and all I did was get rid of a norton virus popup box!! Give me my points back!!".

Perhaps if we were building a site for only SATs or something that sort of thing might be useful, but considering the risk/reward of it.... it doesn't look good.

As for giving slow players more points, perhaps that could some day happen for all games, but that's really a different issue. Slow players do have nearly 100,000 untimed quizzes, thousands of crosswords, a monster quiz, quiz creation, question quest submission, and other games they can play to earn enormous gobs of points, so I don't think we're lacking in ways for slow players to earn points!

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#517195 - Fri Mar 19 2010 11:59 AM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
Terry Offline

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Loc: USA
(and I speak as a slow player!)

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#517196 - Fri Mar 19 2010 12:03 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
BxBarracuda Offline
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Registered: Wed Sep 05 2007
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Thanks for the adjustments to the games Terry.

I agree, there is no such thing as a perfect system, but you have a way of coming close to it.

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#517197 - Fri Mar 19 2010 12:05 PM Re: Expert Googlers [Re: Terry]
WesleyCrusher Offline

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I'm just trying to find ways to satisfy both sides of the monthly "googlers and slow players" discussion

(And yes, I know about the possible issues with losing the window for reasons beyond control. That's why my afterthought came up - not having Javascript or getting anything to kill your form focus just nixes the bonus but you'd still get to play for the normal 100.)


Edited by WesleyCrusher (Fri Mar 19 2010 12:07 PM)
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