Replaying Events for 2021

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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by Name » March 11th, 2020, 10:24 pm

builderguy135 wrote:
March 11th, 2020, 9:41 pm
Name wrote:
March 11th, 2020, 9:30 pm
builderguy135 wrote:
March 11th, 2020, 9:02 pm
Code - New ciphers please. Code is fun but the 10 or so ciphers are getting kinda old to be honest.
Hm, just wondering, what new types of cipher would you propose?
Polybius Square ciphers, XOR ciphers (or other binary ciphers?), Columnar/Rail Fence ciphers, ASCII ROT ciphers, 3x3 Hill Decryption given encryption matrix, Playfair cipher, Bifid cipher, or Vig/Morbit/Pollux/Affine/Hill with more emphasis on cryptanalysis.

Also xenocrypts in languages other than Spanish? (/s) lol

Maybe even a combination of ciphers such as morse+aristocrat?

My partners would hate me for suggesting these things haha
Hmm.
Polybius square ciphers by themselves seem quite simple. Maybe a variant of it (Nihilist cipher?) would be quite interesting.
XOR ciphers kinda seem like a more complicated bacon tbh. Not sure if I would want to go there.
For Columnar/Rail fence cipher, I agree, some type of transposition cipher should be added.
Considering punctuation doesn't really matter and symbols almost never being used, ASCII ROT cipher is kinda pointless imo.
3x3 is just tedious and yuck to make decryption matrix. No thanks.
Playfair/Bifid both seem interesting enough, and I think they'll work well.
Hill cryptoanalysis seems interesting. I think they had it in the rules for the first year but never tested it and thus didn't bring it back From what I could remember there was no consistent method of getting the key, but if there is indeed a method, I think it should be tested.
How would you propose combining morse and aristo? lol

Hopefully they can at least add some of these to spice it up a bit.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by Giantpants » March 12th, 2020, 12:05 am

I'm not a competitor anymore (wow that feels weird to say) but if they are looking to make edits to the events while still keeping them around I guess I can say a few things

Sounds of Music - it feels like that the closer we get to the end of the season, more and more perfect instruments arise, which makes sense, but I do kinda fear for what the event would become if everyone showed up to early season comps in 2020-2021 with perfect instruments, since it would effectively nullify that portion of the event. While I definitely do not want to go back to song playing like there was the last time this event was in rotation, maybe, as builderguy135 said, making a second instrument would be nice? Maybe two unique instruments that have to perform the scale with a skip task? That way, this year's work isn't wasted, but new work is still required. Idk, I am just personally curious to see if our team will be able to rehash the same build design for the third year in a row (even if I'm not there to be the one to do it sigh lol). Regardless, I guess I'd expect the test to be far more important relative to last year, particularly in early season invitationals.

My other three events, all tests, (Geologic Mapping, Dynamic Planet, Astronomy) kinda suffer from something similar in that I fear their presence for so long (particularly Geologic Mapping and Sounds of Music which are now gonna be entering their third consecutive years) effectively gives license to test writers to make the tests really hard, given that the events have been around so long, while also making it so that most relatively competitive teams will be able to get pretty much all of the easier stuff on tests. I'm kinda afraid, as a (hopefully) future test writer, of how hard it's gonna be to find new topics to include on tests that differ from the norm, and what these will do to test score distributions. Then again, I'm sure in fields as vast as geology and astronomy, there is always more stuff to ask about that I just don't know about, so maybe I shouldn't worry about it so far in advance. I expect them to leave Dynamic Planet completely the same, they can probably just treat it like a two year rotation where the rules don't change at all. It worked out fine for oceanography back in 2015/2016.

I'd guess it's a lot easier to adapt what you've studied to a (relatively slightly I assume lol) different set of rules than to alter a whole build, so I guess Sounds of Music is the only one of these on which anything I say has actual merit. So yeah.

Just for discussion, in terms of "is this right," I know I was personally kinda opposed to it when I found out about it, but that's coming from me, a graduating senior who competed at eight competitions this year, and only ended up missing one due to the virus. And although that competition was states, definitely the most important one, I was able to get plenty of use out of my instrument, my teammates got plenty of use out of their amazing Gravity Vehicle and Detector, so we actually got really lucky on this one. The teams who had their regionals this week and were notified single days in advance about cancelations were not so lucky, and now they have those builds just sitting there. So tbh your opinion on this definitely depends on your circumstances, but I could support either argument. (not that my opinion matters too much haha)

Oh and I'm super happy to (potentially) be able to write tests for Geologic Mapping and for (division C) Sounds of Music, opportunities I didn't think I would get for years! Best of luck to everyone as we move into these uncharted waters.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by pb5754 » March 12th, 2020, 5:02 am

What if only events that have already been in for two years with the same topics/minor topic changes (eg. Fossils, Geologic Mapping, Circuit Lab, Protein Modeling, etc.) get switched out? Most competitors in these topics tend to be eighth or ninth graders or seniors who have already spent a year competing in these events and won't get a second chance due to graduation. It would also allow teams who have not been able to compete in events with yearly topic rotations (eg. Anatomy and Physiology, Dynamic Planet, etc.) a second chance to compete, while also preserving at least some of the yearly variation of events and the opportunity to learn something new that is valued by the Science Olympiad community.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by pb5754 » March 12th, 2020, 5:08 am

Or even at least switching out events that are in an event rotation schedule with only two events makes sense as many younger competitors can get another opportunity to compete in these events in 2 years.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by OpticsNerd » March 12th, 2020, 5:23 am

Giantpants wrote:
March 12th, 2020, 12:05 am
I'm not a competitor anymore (wow that feels weird to say) but if they are looking to make edits to the events while still keeping them around I guess I can say a few things

Sounds of Music - it feels like that the closer we get to the end of the season, more and more perfect instruments arise, which makes sense, but I do kinda fear for what the event would become if everyone showed up to early season comps in 2020-2021 with perfect instruments, since it would effectively nullify that portion of the event. While I definitely do not want to go back to song playing like there was the last time this event was in rotation, maybe, as builderguy135 said, making a second instrument would be nice? Maybe two unique instruments that have to perform the scale with a skip task? That way, this year's work isn't wasted, but new work is still required. Idk, I am just personally curious to see if our team will be able to rehash the same build design for the third year in a row (even if I'm not there to be the one to do it sigh lol). Regardless, I guess I'd expect the test to be far more important relative to last year, particularly in early season invitationals.
I'd like to see them add more topics to the test part and then give it higher weight than it currently has.

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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by syo_astro » March 12th, 2020, 5:25 am

Since I don't think this has been exactly said...my perspective as a test writer. I figure many states will likely hold onto tests for next year, but that's not really a big issue unless they get leaked somehow(?). Most people don't get anywhere close to perfect on most tests I've seen...EXCEPT maybe regionals. Even if half of the regionals "don't have to be rewritten", half do (and that depends, states sometimes run similar regionals? So more may have to be rewritten anyway)...it's a real issue to me, especially since there are so many invites to "compete" with for "doable material"...and they all might run with the same level of material all over again?

To me, summer work is hardly an issue since even at my old HS, a competitive team, most people barely studied over summer...so not holding my breath there. But it is pretty clear many teams just trade every invy possible. I'm aware the invys are a biased set of teams, and it's impossible to never repeat content anyway, but I have started to run out of my regionals level content after writing a few tests for Astronomy (I have PLENTY of ideas for difficult content, GiantPants;P...but I really don't like putting on tons of irrelevant or impossible topics like most do for the event:/).

I can respect wanting to appease the people who want to keep events, I trust the nats committee did due diligence discussing that side. I also thought I read the details of rules changes hasn't been hashed out? In that case, considering <half the events get changed usually anyway, I would hope many events get some kind of change...at least so I can have some different material for regionals...
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by sciolyperson1 » March 12th, 2020, 5:34 am

pb5754 wrote:
March 12th, 2020, 5:08 am
Or even at least switching out events that are in an event rotation schedule with only two events makes sense as many younger competitors can get another opportunity to compete in these events in 2 years.
I was thinking that since many people are divided on keeping events/switching them out, you could replay all first year events with minor tweaks and switch out all second year events. First year events which would need to be kept include:
B:
RFTS, Orni, Food Sci, PPP, Machines, Mission, Mousetrap.

C:
Orni, PPP, Machines, Detector, Gravity.

A lot of people look forward to certain events coming back before they graduate. Changing this would be unfair for those who wanted to do certain events in their senior year, as now they are unable to participate in those events.

Moreover, keeping events would give a severe disadvantage to incoming freshmen and new scioly members.

Usually, a majority of the team consists of graduating (12th graders/9th graders for B) members (7 for C/5 for B). If events were to be replayed, it would not affect this population of members, as they'll move on from the event or scioly all together.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by sciolyperson1 » March 12th, 2020, 5:35 am

syo_astro wrote:
March 12th, 2020, 5:25 am
Since I don't think this has been exactly said...my perspective as a test writer. I figure many states will likely hold onto tests for next year, but that's not really a big issue unless they get leaked somehow(?). Most people don't get anywhere close to perfect on most tests I've seen...EXCEPT maybe regionals. Even if half of the regionals "don't have to be rewritten", half do (and that depends, states sometimes run similar regionals? So more may have to be rewritten anyway)...it's a real issue to me, especially since there are so many invites to "compete" with for "doable material"...and they all might run with the same level of material all over again?
Haven't even thought about that... smaller, lesser well run invitationals and regionals will tend to reuse tests even when the rules are not replayed. I can see this being a huge issue if the current rules are kept.
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Nats:
Team - 3rd '18, '19


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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by pb5754 » March 12th, 2020, 5:39 am

sciolyperson1 wrote:
March 12th, 2020, 5:35 am
syo_astro wrote:
March 12th, 2020, 5:25 am
Since I don't think this has been exactly said...my perspective as a test writer. I figure many states will likely hold onto tests for next year, but that's not really a big issue unless they get leaked somehow(?). Most people don't get anywhere close to perfect on most tests I've seen...EXCEPT maybe regionals. Even if half of the regionals "don't have to be rewritten", half do (and that depends, states sometimes run similar regionals? So more may have to be rewritten anyway)...it's a real issue to me, especially since there are so many invites to "compete" with for "doable material"...and they all might run with the same level of material all over again?
Haven't even thought about that... smaller, lesser well run invitationals and regionals will tend to reuse tests even when the rules are not replayed. I can see this being a huge issue if the current rules are kept.
Even some states reuse some tests when the events remain the same.
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Re: Replaying Events for 2021

Post by NadiaT » March 12th, 2020, 5:52 am

Does this imply that events with an ID component will keep the same species?
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