Monday, May 28, 2007

KQA Mahaquizzer 2007

The Bangalore leg of the Mahaquizzer 2007 competition was organized by the KQA at the ITC campus on Sunday. The exam(!) was administered simultaneously in 9 other cities. It was, for the most part, a great set of questions. The general opinion it was much better than those in the previous editions.

There were 150 questions to answer in 90 minutes' time. Anustup Datta top-scored with 67 points for Bangalore. I hear the national top was 71 (in Chennai). The official results and answers will be put up on the KQA blog soon. Sreeram, my friend in Chennai scored 46, he told me. The topper in Kerala was Harikrishnan with 51.

It was an enjoyable outing for me, was writing anything resembling an examination after a gap of nearly 4 years! I managed to scored 34 points out of 150 (as per my count,the cursory in-situ evaluation put me at 30; the vagaries of evaluation!). After the unofficial results were announced, Praveen, Sai, Vivek and I headed to Mangalore Pearl, a restaurant in Fraser Town, for a pork-fest!

Kudos to the KQA for a job well done!

(110/150, watch the KQA site for full detail E&OE)
* 1992 Bharat Rana sent by registered post - Maulana Abul Kalam Azad
* Fruit "song of the wolf" - Cantaloupe
* Greek for hatred and cold - Styx
* Camphiris, used to dye nails of mummies - Henna
* Popeye Bulge
* Impurity list 1881 - Ivory Soap
* Two word term coined in 90s book about sleep - Power Nap
* City of Angels soundtrack, Greek Rainbow - Iris
* Kumbha mela modern => Harsha Vardhana
* Obituary 1975 misquote Shakespeare - Hercule Poirot
* Banks list. - highest altitude ATM
* Adult reproductive stage - Imago
* Island listing - Galapagos
* Julius Caesar Burial. Inspiration for Roman history book - The Forum
* Plane Mosquito aviation company - De Havillan
* Jagmohan Mundra
* Spy - Nana Phadnawis
* Number of horses > number of people - Mongolia
* SI unit of charge Coulomb. CGS - Coulomb
* 1951 case. Somebody vs State of Madras - First Constitutional Amendment
* Samuel Rubin. Paris brothers - Faberge
* Stuff about pigs and fences! Erinaceous - Hedgehog
* Brazil rock formation - Pao de Pizugur
* Mnemonic to remember speed of light. How? - Using telephonic keypad
* Somebody - Indy500 founder
* Trained to catch fish - Cormorants
* 1851 book by inventor Elastic - Charles Goodyear
* John McDermot won the first. Dominated by Kenyans - Boston Marathon
* BOMIS, beard award - Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia
* Assistant of Robert Koch - Petri dish
* Sage curse Brahma not to be worshipped anywhere - Bhrigu
* Apple software to convert to Intel - Rosetta
* Uluru Ayers Rock
* Expulsion list. Missing two name - The Grimm Brothers
* Name inspired by "And Quiet Flows The Don" - Jis Desh Mein Ganga Behti Hain
* First reality show - Candid Camera
* Only mineral to be directly consumed by humans - Rock salt (The only shocker!)
* Hypothetical landmass, Roman May 7,9,11 - Lemuria
* Ethnical classification of idiocy - trisomy of Chromosome 21 - Mongoloidism (Down's syndrome)
* Father son duo. Father => Country - Israel and Judah
* Plant response imitation of animal - Mimosa
* Heal-all, trifoliate and five-foliate = Ginseng
* Iranian capture of British soldiers. Look like - Mister Bean
* Hurakan
* Resident of Spain, highest civilian honour - Vishwanathan Anand
* Name of character - Godot
* 1988 Nobel Peace Prize - UN Peacekeeping Force
* Saka, Kollam etc out of 29 used in India- Calendar
* Debonair founder, Illustrated Weekly - Ashok Rao Gavi
* Manufacturer of golf-clubs and tennis racquets. All England sponsor - Yonex
* Pierre De Coubertin introduced. skills needed by soldier to escape - Modern Pentathlon
* Oldest in Pirelli calendar - Sophia Loren
* River in Himalaya, Karnataka, character in Matrix Reloaded (4) - Kali
* Fallen Soldier Robert Capa photo
* Complete - Gambia, Niger, Nigeria, Congo - Senegal (rivers too)
* Islamic earthquake, also late 80s Hindi movie - Zalzala
* Hong Kong star "what Hollywood aspires" - Jackie Chan
* First Indian woman historian - Gulbadan Begum
* Former Belgian Grand Prix, health location - Spa
* Only trophy with names of all winners and management. Everybody gets to keep - Stanley Cup
* Movie called US warfare against Iran - 300
* Hungarian scientist coined "chain reaction" ~= Geo Lillard
* brother of famous person. built platform nations - Ernest Hemingway
* Persepolis ruins
* Named after Japanese steaks - Kobe Bryant (My only real miss!)
* Duel description - Alexander Pushkin
* Sanam - Idol in Arabic, Majrooh Sultanpuri popularized
* Golden flower Chinese movie - Chrysanthemum
* Photography story - Great Wall Of China
* Norwegian for destruction - Lemming
* editor of Esquire 2004, to become smartest man - Read entire Britannica
* Building, blending etc - Cocktails
* Locarnot - place where seven treaties were signed
* Lingua franca
* Oxford Cambridge boat race
* Missing movie 1939 - Wizard Of Oz
* Lumbar puncture, name of movie - Spinal Tap
* Handheld camera pioneered by Elvis => series (first 1989) - MTV Unplugged
* How to play lyre brother - Mercury and Cadatius
* Australian dollar, main city, no capital - Nauru
* Coined by Desmond Tutu at end of apartheid - Rainbow Nation
* Pilomotor reflex, 62-book horror series - Goosebumps
* Legumes name and music band former name given - Black Eyed Peas
* Company identity something. Used seasonally in India, Africa (worldwide) - Election Ink
* Format wider than tabloid - Berliner
* Vishwesarayya - "useless" - Jog Falls
* Tuartara
* Updike poem No French movie without _______ - Depardieueu (I wrote an Eiffel-tower-view!)
* Description of game - Quoits
* US National Monuments founding story
* Tributary of Colorado - Gila
* Superiority, Satisfaction, Incongruity - Smiling
* White House Design
* Steven Soderbergh - 1986 rock documentary
* Largest plant seed- Double coconut
* Plaster of Paris
* Debut in Perfect Murder - Daughter of Saeed and Madhur Jaffrey
* Brief bio - Mohsin Hameed
* Newest Independent Caribbean - St. Kitts & Nevis
* 1935 Nobel, took on wife's name - Frederic Joliot-Curie
* Theodore Roosevelt first US prez out of country - Panama
* Capybara - eaten in Venezuela, fo hide elsewhere
* according to different myths - Fire
* Battle Royale movie based on - The Lord Of The Flies
* Actor debut in 1975 Kannada movie, never in mother-tongue - Rajni Kant
* Waverly by Walter Scott
* Daredevil needs a female - Frank Miller, Elektra
* Four Quarter - Inca
* Yellow fever nursery rhyme => Jack Be Nimble
* Egyptian god, ram head - Ammon
* Blue Stone Excrement - Spirulina

Friday, May 18, 2007

Apart, Not Separate

Half my team moved to a different floor today. Does distance make the heart grow fonder?




Empty chairs and desks, now felt is pain
Now this floor is so much less fun;
You've gone, and left a void main,
But size and space spare none!

Young ones leave when they get older
But without you this place seems colder
(Fewer people for the AC,
Laws of physics, you see?) :-)

Now you have moved to floor three
A place more, where we can feel free!
That you have made the shift
Just means that we'll use more, the lift!

- Thomas

Saturday, May 12, 2007

You Know Officialese TJs

Three short ones, maybe more appropriate as cartoons.

A: Where can I find the pipeline?
B: Which pipeline?
A: You know, the one in which all the projects are...

A: I am resigning.
B: Why's that?
A: I have become a millionaire!
B: On a salary, wow! Where'd you invest?
A: You know, I've got ownership of so many things...

A: Can you please ring me on this phone?
B: But why are you standing on those magazines?
A: You know, I need to take a call on a few issues.