Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #251  
Old 05-05-2019, 05:36 PM
commasense's Avatar
commasense is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Atlanta area
Posts: 6,416
Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorBeef View Post
People are vastly overstating the degree to which is strategy is integral to his continued winning. Yes, he's worked out a way to increase his win expectation (at the cost of his variance - his strategy is easier to sink from one fluke) but 95% of what makes him dominate is simply because he's really good on the buzzer and knows the answer to almost all the questions. His strategy is what gets him the big dollar amounts at the end of the day, but he would almost certainly be on just as big a winning streak if he played more conventionally, just with less total money won.
I think I agree -- Ken Jennings is probably the prime example of what you're saying. But I don't understand what you mean by "his strategy is easier to sink from one fluke."

However, I disagree with your 95% claim. I would weight the relative value of the three components -- button speed, knowledge, and strategy -- somewhat more evenly, because having a runaway lead going in to Final Jeopardy completely eliminates the game's biggest risk: not knowing the final question.

Also, building up an unbeatable lead early protects you against wrong answers in DDs and dead spots in your knowledge base. Then there's the psychological effect on your opponents, as well.
  #252  
Old 05-05-2019, 07:16 PM
Baker is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Tottering-on-the-Brink
Posts: 20,429
I do not know if anyone else has posted this article, but it has a story about a 4-yr old Holzhauer being a math whiz. There are pictures of the guy from the 1989news article.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/subur...505-story.html
__________________
At least my dog loves me.
  #253  
Old 05-05-2019, 07:42 PM
hajario's Avatar
hajario is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Santa Barbara, California
Posts: 16,124
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT View Post
The problem I have with that theory is that there is no one time that Jeopardy airs. It's syndicated at various times in various markets (even on different networks), with the times being nowhere near each other.

Thus, once he's shown to lose in the earliest broadcast of the show, it's going to be in the news everywhere. And I'm gonna guess that Jeopardy fans are not usually the types who avoid the news.

And, presumably, the point is to see him lose before you're told about it. Because, otherwise, you could simply wait until he lost, and then watch the losing episode online somewhere.
You are incorrect. The earliest airing is at like 11am East Coast time. You can find the results if you look but the news has not been spoiling them. Any articles have come been posted after most of the west coast airings are done.
  #254  
Old 05-05-2019, 08:18 PM
Kent Clark's Avatar
Kent Clark is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Posts: 26,762
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherrerd View Post
It would be interesting to know if the Jeopardy! production people get ratings based on how long people stay tuned in, once they start watching. If ad buyers catch on that viewership is dropping sharply in the last half of every show, they will balk at paying full-price rates.
I know it's possible to order TV ratings based on quarter-hours, so I'm sure the producers and the advertising types who are interested are already looking at that. Heck, you could even wire a test audience to tell you how they react to Holzhauer second-by-second, as they do in political debates.

As for advertising placement within the show, that's easy. Sponsor A gets a commercial during the first half one day, Sponsor B gets it the next day, etc. If there's any sponsor anywhere who paid to get a guaranteed spot right before Final Jeopardy, well, they got what they paid for.
  #255  
Old 05-05-2019, 08:25 PM
Kent Clark's Avatar
Kent Clark is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Posts: 26,762
As for ratings, the viewers love it.
  #256  
Old 05-05-2019, 10:32 PM
Garak is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT View Post
The problem I have with that theory is that there is no one time that Jeopardy airs. It's syndicated at various times in various markets (even on different networks), with the times being nowhere near each other.

Thus, once he's shown to lose in the earliest broadcast of the show, it's going to be in the news everywhere. And I'm gonna guess that Jeopardy fans are not usually the types who avoid the news.

And, presumably, the point is to see him lose before you're told about it. Because, otherwise, you could simply wait until he lost, and then watch the losing episode online somewhere.

Someone who was in the studio audience when Ken Jennings lost leaked it weeks beforehand
  #257  
Old 05-06-2019, 12:42 AM
Just Asking Questions is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 7,378
Quote:
Originally Posted by kunilou View Post
If there's any sponsor anywhere who paid to get a guaranteed spot right before Final Jeopardy, well, they got what they paid for.
In our market (and probably others) Geico always gets the spot right before FJ. The commercial is themed to Jeopardy!

And in our market, there are literally about 10 minutes of commercials between the end of DJ and the beginning of FJ. While we skip them all, there must be some people that feel they have a captive audience in there.
  #258  
Old 05-06-2019, 07:27 AM
Gus Gusterson is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: US
Posts: 1,547
Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorBeef View Post
People are vastly overstating the degree to which is strategy is integral to his continued winning. Yes, he's worked out a way to increase his win expectation (at the cost of his variance - his strategy is easier to sink from one fluke) but 95% of what makes him dominate is simply because he's really good on the buzzer and knows the answer to almost all the questions. His strategy is what gets him the big dollar amounts at the end of the day, but he would almost certainly be on just as big a winning streak if he played more conventionally, just with less total money won.
One more factor is that he understands how to bet and isn't afraid to make a big bet when it's the right thing to do. Most other players treat their score as money but it's not money. It's points. The prize is that you get a dollar per point if you win. Thinking "I have $10,000. If I bet big on this Daily Double and miss it I will lose $10,000" is simply wrong. If you're behind the only way to catch up is to bet it all. If you miss the question you will lose, but if you get the question and don't bet enough you will lose anyway.

The only guy who has had a chance yet bet $12,000 on a DD when he had $13,000 so that he could make sure that he got to FJ even if he missed the question. Stupid. If he'd missed the question he was guaranteed to lose, but an extra $1,000 could have put him in a better position to win.

James's Coryat scores (which take away the effect of the Daily Doubles) are much higher than those of the other players, which shows that he would win even if the Daily Doubles didn't exist. The only way to beat him will be to find the Daily Doubles before he does and bet big when you find them.
  #259  
Old 05-06-2019, 07:41 AM
Garak is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 65
It's funny how every time there's a good player on Jeopardy! who uses optimum strategy people whine that he's "ruining" the game because he doesn't play the categories in order

https://www.cnn.com/videos/media/201...sh-vpx-sot.cnn

I don't know why these people even watch the show if they don't like seeing hella good players
  #260  
Old 05-06-2019, 08:24 AM
Chronos's Avatar
Chronos is offline
Charter Member
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: The Land of Cleves
Posts: 85,096
Quote:
Quoth commasense:

I think I agree -- Ken Jennings is probably the prime example of what you're saying. But I don't understand what you mean by "his strategy is easier to sink from one fluke."
OK, suppose that Holzhauer builds up one of his characteristic unbeatable leads, and then on the third Daily Double, he bets big, and (as happens occasionally) gets it wrong. Now that unbeatable lead suddenly isn't unbeatable any more.
  #261  
Old 05-06-2019, 09:05 AM
Gus Gusterson is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: US
Posts: 1,547
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
OK, suppose that Holzhauer builds up one of his characteristic unbeatable leads, and then on the third Daily Double, he bets big, and (as happens occasionally) gets it wrong. Now that unbeatable lead suddenly isn't unbeatable any more.
He may take such a risk on an early Daily Double when he would have time to work his way back but he wouldn't do it late in the game. If he has a lock (enough to guarantee a win) he calculates his wager to keep the lock even if he misses the question. He has left quite a bit of money on the table because his DD wagers are often less than they could be.
  #262  
Old 05-06-2019, 09:21 AM
Lucas Jackson's Avatar
Lucas Jackson is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 4,246
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherrerd View Post
Yes, this is the problem with the 'Holzhauer is great for ratings' theory----he's great for ratings for the first ten minutes of the game, only. Once he has that high-dollar dominance, there's no suspense left.

It would be interesting to know if the Jeopardy! production people get ratings based on how long people stay tuned in, once they start watching. If ad buyers catch on that viewership is dropping sharply in the last half of every show, they will balk at paying full-price rates.
Do you have any facts to back this up? Everything Iíve read says the ratings are through the roof. Personally, Iím much more interested in the second half of the show. Thatís when the other contestants have the best chance at overtaking James. They are more used to the buzzer, the dollar amounts are higher and There are more chances for DDs.

As Gus Gusterson pointed out, as soon as another contestant is ballsy enough bet big at the right time, coinciding with bad luck for James it could be a horse race.
  #263  
Old 05-06-2019, 09:23 AM
commasense's Avatar
commasense is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Atlanta area
Posts: 6,416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
OK, suppose that Holzhauer builds up one of his characteristic unbeatable leads, and then on the third Daily Double, he bets big, and (as happens occasionally) gets it wrong. Now that unbeatable lead suddenly isn't unbeatable any more.
He doesn't do that. He bets aggressively, but not stupidly. In the shows I've watched, ISTM that he will go all in for the DD in the Jeopardy round, because if he drops to zero then, he has enough time to build back up. But in Double Jeopardy he never "makes it a true Daily Double," and once he has more than twice his closest competitor he never bets enough to drop into the range where a competitor could catch him.

On preview: What Gus Gusterson said.
  #264  
Old 05-06-2019, 09:43 AM
Gus Gusterson is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: US
Posts: 1,547
My brother did an interesting experiment. He paused the show after each answer was read. If he knew the answer he gave himself the points. If he didn't know the answer but James did, he gave James the points. I don't think my brother would qualify for Jeopardy, but he nearly beat James. The people who actually get on the show would surely beat James if they could play that way. So all it may take to beat him is someone who is fast enough on the button.
  #265  
Old 05-06-2019, 09:49 AM
notfrommensa is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 11,936
Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
In our market (and probably others) Geico always gets the spot right before FJ. The commercial is themed to Jeopardy!

And in our market, there are literally about 10 minutes of commercials between the end of DJ and the beginning of FJ. While we skip them all, there must be some people that feel they have a captive audience in there.
7 clicks of the Fast Forward skips on my DVR. Each skip is approximately 30 seconds
__________________
notfrommensa is clearly awesome - oslo ostragoth
  #266  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:14 AM
Tired and Cranky is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 1,566
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
OK, suppose that Holzhauer builds up one of his characteristic unbeatable leads, and then on the third Daily Double, he bets big, and (as happens occasionally) gets it wrong. Now that unbeatable lead suddenly isn't unbeatable any more.
His bets on the last Daily Double look riskier than they really are. He usually tries to leave himself enough even if he loses the wager that he still faces little risk of losing the game.

For example, in this game, he had $28,400 and bet $15,000 on the third daily double, which seems like a lot. If he missed, he still would have been left with $13,400. Gabby, his closest competitor at the time, had only $2,800, and there was only $4,000 worth of clues left on the board. With his wager, he was only at risk in Final Jeopardy if: (1) he missed the clue, (2) Gabby got all five remaining Double Jeopardy clues right, (3) she bet it all in Final Jeopardy and got the answer right, and (4) he missed Final Jeopardy. If you start assigning independent odds to all those possibilities, you see that his real chance of losing that game despite his big wager were vanishingly small. (Though, had he bet just $201 less, Final Jeopardy would have been a lock for him no matter what happened in the rest of the round. His bid wasn't quite optimal from a risk perspective but it was pretty close given that he has a few seconds with tens of thousands of dollars on the line to make that decision.)

Here's another big bet of $25,000 on the last Daily Double. Theoretically, he was at risk here too. Had he missed it, and had Samantha got every question right for the rest of the game while James missed Final Jeopardy, he could have lost. However, he only needed to get $1,600 of those remaining clues right to guarantee himself another lock. His calculated bet meant he made an extra $50,000 in Final Jeopardy one he doubled down on that Daily Double wager.

Does anyone think producers are rearranging the board to lower James's earnings? It seems there are more Daily Doubles in the $1,000 row, which means that James is more likely to pick them early in the round before he has built up a huge pot to wager. This reduces his potential winnings a bit (though it doesn't interfere with his streak). I wonder if producers will start making the FJ questions tougher just to reduce his daily winnings further.
  #267  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:28 AM
Lucas Jackson's Avatar
Lucas Jackson is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 4,246
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gus Gusterson View Post
So all it may take to beat him is someone who is fast enough on the button.
I pointed this out earlier. And while I agree with you, itís akin to saying all someone needs to do to beat Usain Bolt is be faster to the finish line. Thatís a big ďallĒ.
  #268  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:38 AM
Dewey Finn is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 28,935
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
Does anyone think producers are rearranging the board to lower James's earnings? It seems there are more Daily Doubles in the $1,000 row, which means that James is more likely to pick them early in the round before he has built up a huge pot to wager. This reduces his potential winnings a bit (though it doesn't interfere with his streak). I wonder if producers will start making the FJ questions tougher just to reduce his daily winnings further.
I don't think they are doing any of this. Pretty sure that daily double locations are random and they won't manipulate the game because of one player. The whole scandal with Twenty-One is still remembered.
  #269  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:54 AM
commasense's Avatar
commasense is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Atlanta area
Posts: 6,416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
Does anyone think producers are rearranging the board to lower James's earnings? It seems there are more Daily Doubles in the $1,000 row, which means that James is more likely to pick them early in the round before he has built up a huge pot to wager. This reduces his potential winnings a bit (though it doesn't interfere with his streak). I wonder if producers will start making the FJ questions tougher just to reduce his daily winnings further.
As others have mentioned before, it would be a violation of Federal law if they made any changes to help or hinder a specific contestant.

They start every tape day with multiple sets of "material" (the answers and questions, including which clues are Daily Doubles), and the set used in each episode is selected randomly just before taping starts, to prevent any form of cheating.

I haven't heard anything about how the writers/producers decide in preparing the material which clues will become Daily Doubles. But apparently the placement of DDs on the board is not strictly random, because there are hot spots, and a couple of places that have never had DDs. (Someone on Reddit made heatmaps of DDs. Jeopardy DDs. Double Jeopardy DDs.) I assume that if it were purely random, after more than 7,800 games every spot on the board would have received 3.33% of the DDs. Is my grasp of statistics incorrect? And if not, why is it not random, and how are the places selected, if not randomly? Anyone?

In any case, if it could be shown that they were in any way changing their normal procedures in response to Holzhauer, they could face Federal charges.
  #270  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:57 AM
Garak is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 65
They don't want the Daily Doubles to be too easy so they are placed in the lower rows more often and have an appropriate difficulty to that row

Last edited by Garak; 05-06-2019 at 10:58 AM.
  #271  
Old 05-06-2019, 11:12 AM
Dewey Finn is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 28,935
I can see how the Daily Double placement can be random but weighed more heavily towards the lower rows.
  #272  
Old 05-06-2019, 12:16 PM
Tired and Cranky is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 1,566
Quote:
Originally Posted by commasense View Post
As others have mentioned before, it would be a violation of Federal law if they made any changes to help or hinder a specific contestant.
Here is the actual law to which you and others are presumably referring: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/47/509

In effect, the law makes it illegal for Jeopardy to do three things: (1) give away "special and secret assistance," (i.e., giving someone the answers), (2) use "persuasion, bribery, intimidation, or otherwise," to get someone to throw the game, or (3) "To engage in any artifice or scheme for the purpose of prearranging or predetermining in whole or in part the outcome of a purportedly bona fide contest of intellectual knowledge, intellectual skill, or chance."

Paragraphs (1) and (2) don't apply to what I've suggested. My question for you is whether rearranging the board and tweaking the difficulty of the questions constitutes an "artifice or scheme" prohibited by paragraph (3). It doesn't involve any scheme between any of the players and the producers. My suggestions don't prearrange or predetermine the outcome. Jeopardy continues to be a bona fide contest of intellectual knowledge. Anyone could come on the show and beat James. It requires no changes to the rules or unfair advantage to any player even if it might have the effect of reducing James's winnings. So what law does it violate?

For what it's worth, it looks like the locations of Daily Doubles over James's run line up pretty closely to historical patterns so I don't think producers are playing with James that way.
  #273  
Old 05-07-2019, 09:38 AM
Hermitian's Avatar
Hermitian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,568
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
I can see how the Daily Double placement can be random but weighed more heavily towards the lower rows.
Here is a DD heatmap.
  #274  
Old 05-07-2019, 11:13 AM
Maserschmidt's Avatar
Maserschmidt is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: New England
Posts: 5,859
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermitian View Post
Here is a DD heatmap.
This is really interesting. The author says it’s a heat map for all 34 seasons, and there are some distinct disconnects within the same rows, particularly for $1000. ETA: more specifically, if I’m looking for a daily double, I’m going to the first column.

Last edited by Maserschmidt; 05-07-2019 at 11:14 AM.
  #275  
Old 05-07-2019, 11:58 AM
enalzi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 8,178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
Paragraphs (1) and (2) don't apply to what I've suggested. My question for you is whether rearranging the board and tweaking the difficulty of the questions constitutes an "artifice or scheme" prohibited by paragraph (3). It doesn't involve any scheme between any of the players and the producers. My suggestions don't prearrange or predetermine the outcome. Jeopardy continues to be a bona fide contest of intellectual knowledge. Anyone could come on the show and beat James. It requires no changes to the rules or unfair advantage to any player even if it might have the effect of reducing James's winnings. So what law does it violate?

For what it's worth, it looks like the locations of Daily Doubles over James's run line up pretty closely to historical patterns so I don't think producers are playing with James that way.
I think the problem is that once you remove the psuedo randomness of DD and have some Jeopardy producer put it in a specific spot, it's just a short hop to "You put that DD in a category because one competitor would do better at it than another."
  #276  
Old 05-07-2019, 01:19 PM
Dewey Finn is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 28,935
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermitian View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
I can see how the Daily Double placement can be random but weighed more heavily towards the lower rows.
Here is a DD heatmap.
Isn't that the same heatmap previously linked to? (Two posts above the one from me that you quoted.)
  #277  
Old 05-07-2019, 03:36 PM
Hermitian's Avatar
Hermitian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,568
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
Isn't that the same heatmap previously linked to? (Two posts above the one from me that you quoted.)
Whoops, I didn't see that link!
  #278  
Old 05-07-2019, 07:11 PM
Chronos's Avatar
Chronos is offline
Charter Member
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: The Land of Cleves
Posts: 85,096
OK, it makes sense to me that it'd usually be in the fourth (or maybe fifth or third) row. There are sound reasons for that.

But why on Earth should some columns be favored over others? They can put the categories in any order they want, and I'd have expected that the order of categories would be random (and hence, the DD which is in a particular category should be equally likely to be in any column).
  #279  
Old 05-07-2019, 08:04 PM
Sherrerd's Avatar
Sherrerd is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 7,161
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
OK, it makes sense to me that it'd usually be in the fourth (or maybe fifth or third) row. There are sound reasons for that.

But why on Earth should some columns be favored over others? They can put the categories in any order they want, and I'd have expected that the order of categories would be random (and hence, the DD which is in a particular category should be equally likely to be in any column).
An image search of "Daily double heatmap" gives quite a few different examples from various periods of time----and amazingly consistently, the 2nd and 6th categories (columns) are much less likely to contain a DD.

This is bizarre. Someone must have asked a show producer about it at one time or another--I haven't found anything about it, but will keep looking.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
... Does anyone think producers are rearranging the board to lower James's earnings? It seems there are more Daily Doubles in the $1,000 row, which means that James is more likely to pick them early in the round before he has built up a huge pot to wager. This reduces his potential winnings a bit (though it doesn't interfere with his streak). I wonder if producers will start making the FJ questions tougher just to reduce his daily winnings further.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
Here is the actual law to which you and others are presumably referring: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/47/509

In effect, the law makes it illegal for Jeopardy to do three things: (1) give away "special and secret assistance," (i.e., giving someone the answers), (2) use "persuasion, bribery, intimidation, or otherwise," to get someone to throw the game, or (3) "To engage in any artifice or scheme for the purpose of prearranging or predetermining in whole or in part the outcome of a purportedly bona fide contest of intellectual knowledge, intellectual skill, or chance."

Paragraphs (1) and (2) don't apply to what I've suggested. My question for you is whether rearranging the board and tweaking the difficulty of the questions constitutes an "artifice or scheme" prohibited by paragraph (3). It doesn't involve any scheme between any of the players and the producers. My suggestions don't prearrange or predetermine the outcome. Jeopardy continues to be a bona fide contest of intellectual knowledge. Anyone could come on the show and beat James. It requires no changes to the rules or unfair advantage to any player even if it might have the effect of reducing James's winnings. So what law does it violate?
...
But paragraph 1 would be invoked against the producers if they started moving Daily Doubles into the bottom row as a means of lessening Holzhauer's earnings---because that would be giving "special and secret assistance" to Holzhauer's opponents. Paragraph 1 isn't limited to giving answers or advance knowledge of questions to contestants. Assistance can take other forms, such as changing show components in a way designed to harm one particular contestant (thereby helping his opponents).

(my emphasis)
  #280  
Old 05-08-2019, 01:15 PM
SlackerInc's Avatar
SlackerInc is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Northern Minnesota
Posts: 12,644
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baker View Post
I do not know if anyone else has posted this article, but it has a story about a 4-yr old Holzhauer being a math whiz. There are pictures of the guy from the 1989news article.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/subur...505-story.html

That's cool. Interesting that he went from a bit of an ugly duckling as a kid to a good looking guy now.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired and Cranky View Post
Does anyone think producers are rearranging the board to lower James's earnings? It seems there are more Daily Doubles in the $1,000 row, which means that James is more likely to pick them early in the round before he has built up a huge pot to wager. This reduces his potential winnings a bit (though it doesn't interfere with his streak). I wonder if producers will start making the FJ questions tougher just to reduce his daily winnings further.

That would make sense. And while IANAL, I can't remotely buy that their having a meeting and declaring "we have been consistenly blowing up our prize money budget lately, so we need to make Daily Doubles harder and/or less valuable" could qualify as "special and secret assistance" to his opponents. It's just facially incorrect IMO to characterize it that way.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas Jackson View Post
I pointed this out earlier. And while I agree with you, itís akin to saying all someone needs to do to beat Usain Bolt is be faster to the finish line. Thatís a big ďallĒ.

Hopefully your wink means you don't really think it's akin to that. The fastest clicker in the world would not beat Holzhauer if he didn't have a copious knowledge of literature, history, pop culture, etc. And you can see by his performance in the clicker-free DDs and FJ that he is superior in that knowledge. He would have done very well on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" if that were still on (although I always assumed they were careful to not invite on Jeopardy-level brainiacs).
__________________
SlackerInc on Twitter: http://twitter.com/slackerinc
  #281  
Old 05-08-2019, 02:55 PM
fjs1fs is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 650
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bootis View Post
Jamesí overall correct to incorrect ratio of nearly 30:1 absolutely trounces the average of around 6:1. Speed is obviously a big factor but his knowledge is absolutely is in a class above any other contestant


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Great point, Bootis. I can't believe how much hype is given to his "style of play," his speed, the "game theory" aspect, and all that other nonsense. The bottom line is this guy seems to know EVERYTHING! Those other factors may have some importance but they'd be meaningless if he didn't know such a high % of answers.
  #282  
Old 05-08-2019, 03:08 PM
Snarky_Kong is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 8,355
Even if you know 100% of the answers, if you're always second best on the trigger, you're not going to do well.

If you can always answer first, then you only need to be right 2/3rd of the time to have the same expected value as the 100% contestant if they go second and you have to be even less right if the third player sometimes snipes them.
  #283  
Old 05-08-2019, 04:54 PM
SlackerInc's Avatar
SlackerInc is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Northern Minnesota
Posts: 12,644
Necessary but not sufficient.
__________________
SlackerInc on Twitter: http://twitter.com/slackerinc
  #284  
Old 05-08-2019, 05:38 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 12,026
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gus Gusterson View Post
So all it may take to beat him is someone who is fast enough on the button.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas Jackson View Post
I pointed this out earlier. And while I agree with you, itís akin to saying all someone needs to do to beat Usain Bolt is be faster to the finish line. Thatís a big ďallĒ.
I am of the opinion that Jeopardy should change their rules to make button timing less of a factor.

It... doesn't seem like an interesting thing for victory to be based on? Like, people watch Usain Bolt race because he's a fast person. Do people watch Jeopardy because the people on it can press a button quickly? I think they do it for the trivia contest.

The simplest way would be that you can ring in at any time before the light turns on, and everyone who does has an equal chance of getting to answer the question first. If no one rings in before the light comes on, then it goes to the first to press the button.
  #285  
Old 05-09-2019, 01:50 AM
terentii's Avatar
terentii is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Moscow/Toronto
Posts: 18,249
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
The simplest way would be that you can ring in at any time before the light turns on, and everyone who does has an equal chance of getting to answer the question first. If no one rings in before the light comes on, then it goes to the first to press the button.
Some people need to hear the clue being read before they buzz in. I know I would. No way would I take a chance that I just might give the correct response after seeing it in print for a split second. I need more time to make sure I understand the clue and can frame the correct response.
__________________
"Makes you wonder why we bother, eh, Fawlty?"
"Didn't know you did, Major."
  #286  
Old 05-09-2019, 03:55 AM
Ellis Dee is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: New England
Posts: 14,516
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
The simplest way would be that you can ring in at any time before the light turns on, and everyone who does has an equal chance of getting to answer the question first.
Equal chance as in by random draw? I'd hate to be responsible for a computer program tasked with generating the random numbers, as any such set will contain suspiciously long streaks after an arbitrary amount of time. "Returning champ was 'randomly' selected every time that game. FIX!"

They could do it old-school with dice or something, but that would slow things down too much.

Could you alternate it, somehow? Like all three pre-buzz, first tiebreaker goes to A (champ), all three pre-buzz again so this time it goes to B. Next time C, then back to A, etc...

It gets more complicated when only two people buzz in, but I think it could hold together.

Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii View Post
Some people need to hear the clue being read before they buzz in. I know I would. No way would I take a chance that I just might give the correct response after seeing it in print for a split second. I need more time to make sure I understand the clue and can frame the correct response.
No, not after a split second. His suggestion would mean all you have to do is buzz in a split second faster than they're allowing you to now. That's still early. Everyone early gets an equal shot at winning the buzzer for that question.
  #287  
Old 05-09-2019, 07:49 AM
terentii's Avatar
terentii is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Moscow/Toronto
Posts: 18,249
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellis Dee View Post
No, not after a split second. His suggestion would mean all you have to do is buzz in a split second faster than they're allowing you to now. That's still early. Everyone early gets an equal shot at winning the buzzer for that question.
They all have to wait until the clue is read. So they all have an equal advantage.

How would allowing them to buzz in earlier than that rectify anything? It would favor those who can read faster than the others, increase the probability of giving wrong responses, and encourage those who can't come up with a response at all to press their buttons prematurely.

In other words, it would open up a huge can of worms.
__________________
"Makes you wonder why we bother, eh, Fawlty?"
"Didn't know you did, Major."
  #288  
Old 05-09-2019, 07:55 AM
fjs1fs is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 650
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gus Gusterson View Post
My brother did an interesting experiment. He paused the show after each answer was read. If he knew the answer he gave himself the points. If he didn't know the answer but James did, he gave James the points. I don't think my brother would qualify for Jeopardy, but he nearly beat James. The people who actually get on the show would surely beat James if they could play that way. So all it may take to beat him is someone who is fast enough on the button.
Why would your brother not qualify for Jeopardy? If he knows as much as this guy, he should take the next online test and get on the show!
  #289  
Old 05-09-2019, 08:00 AM
Ellis Dee is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: New England
Posts: 14,516
Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii View Post
They all have to wait until the clue is read. So they all have an equal advantage.

How would allowing them to buzz in earlier than that rectify anything? It would favor those who can read faster than the others, increase the probability of giving wrong responses, and encourage those who can't come up with a response at all to press their buttons prematurely.

In other words, it would open up a huge can of worms.
The suggestion put forth is that the timing when you're allowed to buzz in is still maintained, but you'd also be allowed to buzz in earlier than that. Instantly if you want, or after a quick scanning of the clue yourself, or after waiting until Alex is almost done reading it. Which is still too early.

Everyone who buzzes in early would go into a pool of tied buzzers, and everyone in the pool has equal chance to win the tiebreaker regardless how early they buzzed in.

I was mostly interested in brainstorming the selected with "equal chance" part; wondering if pseudo-random would cut it.
  #290  
Old 05-09-2019, 02:14 PM
commasense's Avatar
commasense is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Atlanta area
Posts: 6,416
Is anyone else surprised to learn that announcer Johnny Gilbert will turn 95 years old in July?!?

I knew he had been around for a long time, so I looked him up. But I didn't think he was that old!

His contemporary, Don Pardo, also did lots of game shows, but is best known as the announcer for Saturday Night Live, which he did till he was 96! Unlike Gilbert, who's there in the studio for every show, for the last few years, Pardo recorded his stuff in his home in Arizona.
  #291  
Old 05-09-2019, 02:23 PM
MrAtoz is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by commasense View Post
Is anyone else surprised to learn that announcer Johnny Gilbert will turn 95 years old in July?!?
I wasn't, but only because I found out his age when I was on the show last year.

Johnny Gilbert entertains the audience between games, while Alex is changing his suit and the next batch of contestants is getting ready to go on. He had stories about announcing for The Price is Right. I'm talking about the original, black-and-white Prince is Right, hosted by Bill Cullen. How many folks here even remember Bill Cullen?
  #292  
Old 05-09-2019, 02:44 PM
Snarky_Kong is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 8,355
Quote:
Originally Posted by fjs1fs View Post
Why would your brother not qualify for Jeopardy? If he knows as much as this guy, he should take the next online test and get on the show!
The experiment does not imply that his brother knows as much as James Holzhauer. In fact a worse than average person would win most of the time if they were allowed first shot at every single question.
  #293  
Old 05-09-2019, 03:36 PM
Just Asking Questions is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 7,378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snarky_Kong View Post
The experiment does not imply that his brother knows as much as James Holzhauer. In fact a worse than average person would win most of the time if they were allowed first shot at every single question.
Precisely. I get a lot right at home. All that means is I know trivia, it doesn't mean I'd do good in an actual game.

And I don't want to be on TV, and have people I never met opinionating on on-line forums and message boards about me, and making fun of my appearance or my character.

That said, Austin is still a goofy-looking jerk.
  #294  
Old 05-09-2019, 04:46 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 12,026
Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii View Post
Some people need to hear the clue being read before they buzz in. I know I would. No way would I take a chance that I just might give the correct response after seeing it in print for a split second. I need more time to make sure I understand the clue and can frame the correct response.
I think you misunderstand my suggestion, or one of us misunderstands the current case.

Right now, at time t_0, the question appears on the screen. You can read it. Alex starts reading it aloud. At some time shortly after Alex finishes reading it, a light comes on that the contestants see. At that point, t_light, the buzzers are active, and the first person to buzz in gets to answer.

I am proposing that anyone who rings in between t_0 and t_light+t_human_reaction_time be given an equal chance to answer.

Essentially, remove "quick on the buzzer" as a component of the game. "Quick to find the answer" is still relevant, because reading the question as Alex reads it still doesn't give you that much time to figure it out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellis Dee View Post
Equal chance as in by random draw? I'd hate to be responsible for a computer program tasked with generating the random numbers, as any such set will contain suspiciously long streaks after an arbitrary amount of time. "Returning champ was 'randomly' selected every time that game. FIX!"
This is a well-solved problem. The Nevada Gaming Commission, for one, has figured out how to regulate it. I'm sure that whoever makes sure that Jeopardy is a true contest could manage it too.

Quote:
Could you alternate it, somehow? Like all three pre-buzz, first tiebreaker goes to A (champ), all three pre-buzz again so this time it goes to B. Next time C, then back to A, etc...
Sure, you could. That is also fair, but probably less interesting.
  #295  
Old 05-09-2019, 10:23 PM
Ellis Dee is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: New England
Posts: 14,516
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
This is a well-solved problem. The Nevada Gaming Commission, for one, has figured out how to regulate it. I'm sure that whoever makes sure that Jeopardy is a true contest could manage it too.
What do you mean, slots? That's not really related to what I'm talking about.

You can play a slot machine and lose 20 times in a row and nobody bats an eye. If you enacted a tiebreaker for early buzzers on Jeopardy, and the champ gets picked 20 times in a row, you've opened yourself up for criticism.

If you introduce a "forced shuffle" effect where you prevent too many duplicates in a row, you're no longer generating "pure" random numbers, but instead more or less doctored ones, again opening yourself up for criticism and/or inspection. (And, it should be pointed out, if you do do this, you're only a very short half-step away from the alternating method I proposed instead of random. Just set the duplicate limit to 1.)

It's possible you were talking about something other than slots; if so, apologies for the assumption.

Last edited by Ellis Dee; 05-09-2019 at 10:26 PM.
  #296  
Old 05-09-2019, 11:29 PM
SlackerInc's Avatar
SlackerInc is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Northern Minnesota
Posts: 12,644
Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii View Post
They all have to wait until the clue is read. So they all have an equal advantage.

How would allowing them to buzz in earlier than that rectify anything? It would favor those who can read faster than the others, increase the probability of giving wrong responses, and encourage those who can't come up with a response at all to press their buttons prematurely.

In other words, it would open up a huge can of worms.

That doesn't sound bad to me. I also don't understand why it would encourage people who have no idea what the answer is to press their buttons prematurely. You know they lose money if they answer incorrectly, right?
__________________
SlackerInc on Twitter: http://twitter.com/slackerinc
  #297  
Old 05-10-2019, 12:34 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 12,026
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellis Dee View Post
What do you mean, slots? That's not really related to what I'm talking about.

You can play a slot machine and lose 20 times in a row and nobody bats an eye. If you enacted a tiebreaker for early buzzers on Jeopardy, and the champ gets picked 20 times in a row, you've opened yourself up for criticism.
Seems pretty similar to slots to me. In both cases you need something that generates random numbers, there's real money on the line, and people are worried about whether the process is fair.

And there's a known solution. The process to mechanically generate a list of random numbers is well known and studied. A regulatory agency tasked with determining if the process is fair already exists in other contexts.

Obviously, losing at a slot machine 20 times in a row is much more common than winning a 2- or 3-way tiebreaker on jeopardy because your chance of winning on a slot machine is a lot less than 1/3. But so what?

Notice that in this thread there's already speculation that Jeopardy is moving the Daily Doubles to thwart Holzhaur, that they are changing the difficulty of the questions, etc. People are always going to speculate that the process is unfair and criticize things. The question is: is the process fair, and can you reasonably prove it to an impartial observer. It is easy to make a random tiebreaker that satisfies both of those.

It's not like the current process is any less open to criticism. People sort of assume that Holzhaur is winning because he is faster on the buzzer, but... maybe the producers are letting him win the buzzes because they want the ratings of having someone go on a tear? To be clear, I'm not actually suggesting that. I'm just saying you have to have some amount of trust in the system. The machine that determines who buzzed in first could be just as rigged as a random number generator.
  #298  
Old 05-10-2019, 12:43 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 12,026
Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii View Post
They all have to wait until the clue is read. So they all have an equal advantage.
No, currently people who have a very quick reaction time have an advantage, and people who have experience with the buzzer timing because they've played Jeopardy before have an advantage. Everyone who is going to buzz in is poised to do so as quickly as possible as soon as the window to buzz in opens.

Instead of having them all be ready and then race to buzz in quickly, they can just buzz in as soon as they're ready. Everyone who does so gets an equal chance to answer.

Quote:
How would allowing them to buzz in earlier than that rectify anything? It would favor those who can read faster than the others
No. Under my proposed rules, there's no advantage to buzzing in earlier than someone else, as long as you buzz in by the latest time that someone could have buzzed in under the current rules. Jeopardy already favors those who can read faster because they have more time to think about the question. But this rule change doesn't give any more advantage to those who can read faster.

Quote:
increase the probability of giving wrong responses, and encourage those who can't come up with a response at all to press their buttons prematurely.
For anyone playing Jeopardy, at some point during the reading of the question and before they are allowed to buzz in, each player has to make a determination of whether they think they can answer the question correctly. If they think they can, they get ready to buzz in as soon as the light comes on. Then they all race to be the first to do so.

My rule just means that as soon as they decide they think they can answer the question, they just press the button. It doesn't incentivize you to buzz in earlier, or to buzz in on questions you don't know the answer to. It simply removes the "race to be the fastest one to press a button" part of the game.

Importantly, this change levels the playing field between new players and returning champions. Every successful Jeopardy player has pointed out how familiarity with the buzzer timing is a big advantage. Is that really the skill we want Jeopardy to reward?

Last edited by iamthewalrus(:3=; 05-10-2019 at 12:43 PM.
  #299  
Old 05-10-2019, 12:46 PM
SenorBeef is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 28,273
Do new contestants get a chance to practice on the buzzers? I feel like everyone should get 2 or 3 minutes to get a feel for it before they go on the show.
  #300  
Old 05-10-2019, 12:53 PM
pulykamell is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: SW Side, Chicago
Posts: 47,940
There's absolutely no reason to do so, as the Jeopardy! format is well established and enjoyed by almost all, but I just don't understand all the arguing about the buzzer stuff. If you want to do it like everyone else does it, just don't show the answer(question) to the contestants (feel free to show it to those at home), have Alex read it out, and whenever anyone wants to buzz in thinking they know the direction the answer/question is headed, have at it, and Alex stops reading the clue.

Last edited by pulykamell; 05-10-2019 at 12:53 PM.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:26 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017