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Crowd Trivia at Detroit Maker Faire

See the Crowd Trivia page for the full rules and concept.  Otherwise, here's the updates from the Detroit Maker Faire:

The Data:

with your fabulous host, Rachel McGuffin!

We had about 140ish people play 52 different rounds, with about 55ish questions generated by players throughout the day.  Questions ranged from "Who invented the starter?" (Charles Kettering) to "Where's Dave-o! at 11:30am" (Dave-o! was standing in the booth next to us - at 11:30 he was at a talk about his book Snip, Burn, Solder, Shred.  Tough question, unless you figured out who Dave-o was!).

You can see all of the questions generated here on Flickr (sorry, the camera shifted a little at the end, so some got cut off).

Additional rules:

  • Instead of questions disappearing after getting 20 tallies, they now disappear at 10 tallies - this means that really stupid questions go away faster, which is good.
  • On Sunday, I decided to write down the incorrect answers to questions on the board.  This helps the next player know what's wrong so people aren't guessing the same wrong answer over and over.  Also, it allows a wider variety of questions - that is, hard but guessable questions (like when was the model T first sold) become easier over time.  This actually helped a lot, though it somewhat clogged up the board with more information.
  • We eventually did away with the Question Askers leader board.  Originally, the intent was the incentivize people to make hard-but-not-too-hard questions, so the game would stay interesting.  However, it became too hard to track for the game show host.  Also, the top 5 Question Answerer's leader board became nearly impossible to get on by the end of the first day.  So instead, we decided to just have a top 10 board for Question Answerer's, and tell people when they create their questions that it should "Just hard enough". which seems to work just fine.
  • I also added an additional badge at 5 points (previously, badges were at 10 and 20 points only), so that more people got more badges.

Future improvements:

  • I really REALLY want to use the data (questions) more effectively via Evernote, which has optical character recognition (OCR) and can scrape the text off an image. It was suggested that I create an Evernote App to automate this, which I really want to do.  This is useful for Crowd Trivia, but is also generally useful for many other things (scientists sharing data on their whiteboards, Agile developers sharing immediate data from their storylines off their walls, etc.). Shoot me an email at if you think this is as good an idea as I do.
  • It may be worth having the cap of 7 tallies when a question disappears - I think it's still a bit too difficult and I'd rather see more people feel successful and have fun than have lots of super hard questions.

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