Published on March 3, 2014
Cerebrum 3.0 Prelims QM: Mahendra Mohan Das
Universal rules for the quiz: • Quizmaster is God. And he doesn’t play dice (used to play when he was a child). • Hints will be given like charity. But the same cannot be said about time. He has a train to catch. Plan accordingly. • Arguing with a sleep-deprived quizmaster is injurious to health. “Janhit mein jaari”.
Rules for prelims • 25 questions. No negatives. I love guesses. • 16-20 are starred questions, to resolve ties. • Using electronic devices (or printed or handwritten notes, too, to be clear) will lead to immediate disqualification. And yes, keep cellphones in silent mode.
1) • The Bombay Natural History Society, founded on 15 September 1883, is one of the largest NGOs in India engaged in conservation and biodiversity research. The BNHS logo is a bird named William, who lived on the premises of the Society from 1894 until 1920. • This bird is more famous among the people of North-East India for something that takes place in Nagaland in the first week of December every year. • Which bird?
2) • The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC)'s oneoff digital theatre project (a variation of the name of a Shakespearean play ____ ____ ____ ____) took place live in Stratford-upon-Avon and online, in collaboration with Google from 21st24th June, 2013. • Which play? And why 21st June? • (Screenshot on the next slide)
A Midsummer Night’s Dream. • 21st June: Midsummer. • Longest day of the year. • The production was Midsummer Night’s Dreaming.
3) • Humphry Davy is best remembered today for his discoveries of several alkali and alkaline earth metals, as well as contributions to the discoveries of the elemental nature of chlorine and iodine; as well as the inventor of the Davy lamp, a variant of the safety lamp. • He, however, is supposed to have claimed “something” else as his greatest discovery. • “What”?
Michael Faraday. • Faraday sent Davy a three-hundred-page book based on notes that he had taken during the lectures of Davy. Davy's reply was immediate, kind, and favourable; and later appointed Faraday as his secretary.
• 4) Her father studied her horoscope and predicted that she would remain and unmarried. To avoid this fate, he ascertained an auspicious moment for his daughter's wedding and to alert his daughter at the correct time, he placed a cup with a small hole at the bottom of a vessel filled with water, arranged so that the cup would sink at the beginning of the propitious hour. • He put the device in a room with a warning to her to not go near it. In her curiosity though, she went to look at the device and a pearl from her bridal dress accidentally dropped into it, thus upsetting it. The auspicious moment for the wedding thus passed unnoticed leaving a devastated father. • Who was she? Who was her father? Or, how was she immortalized by her father?
5) • Ouroboros is an ancient symbol depicting a serpent or dragon eating its own tail. • What was inspired by a dream a certain individual had figuring a similar creature? Who was the person?
Kekulé. • The structure of the benzene ring.
6) • Upon arriving at Princeton, this person was invited to Dean Eisenhart’s office. The dean’s wife greeted him and offered him a cup of tea. The following dialogue ensued: • Dean’s wife: “Would you like cream or lemon in your tea, Mr. _____?” • He replied (without thinking): “I’ll have both, thank you.” • What did the lady famously reply?
7) • Established in 1959 and beginning operations in 1968, it is Ecuador's first national park and a UNESCO World Heritage Site (whose logo is shown in the picture); and has many famous visiting sites, including Tortuga Bay. • Name it.
Galapagos national park.
8) • What is being celebrated? Give the exact term for full points, or the funda for half points.
Newtonmas. • Sir Isaac Newton’s birthday.
9) • According to Google Calculator, “___ ___ ___" is equal to 1.16699016 × 10-8 hertz. The hertz is a unit of frequency (one per second), and thus if the mean length of time between ____ ____ (2.7145 years according to Google) is metricated and converted to a frequency (by calculating the multiplicative inverse), it can be expressed in terms of hertz. • Explanation of which English phrase?
Once in a blue moon.
10) • First produced in 1935, by Wallace Carothers at DuPont Experimental Station, it is one of the most commonly used polymers. Many individuals and corporations worked diligently during the first few months of World War II to find a way to replace Asian silk by it in parachutes. In 1940, John W. Eckelberry of DuPont stated that the first letters of the name were arbitrary and the last two letters were copied from the suffixes of other fibers; and the name has nothing to do with two city names as many of us have read in our childhood. • What?
Nylon. • No, it’s not abbreviation of New York and London.
11) • In chaos theory, the _____ effect is the sensitive dependency on initial conditions in which a small change at one place in a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. The name of the effect, coined by Edward Lorenz, is derived from the theoretical example of a hurricane's formation being contingent on whether or not a distant _____ had flapped its wings several weeks earlier. • What is the effect called?
The butterfly effect.
12) • “I trust, you remember me as a fellow-traveller on your voyage from Japan to Chicago. I very much recall at this moment your views on the growth of the ascetic spirit in India... I recall these ideas in connection with my scheme of Research Institute of Science for India, of which you have doubtless heard or read…” • This is a part of a letter written by X to Y, after which, Y endorsed the project, and Z was set up. • Solve the variables.
• X: Jamsetji Tata • Y: Swami Vivekananda • Z: Indian Institute of Science
13) • This is the trailer of Heartless, a 2014 Hindi movie released a few weeks ago. The directorial debut of Shekhar Suman got average ratings by various newspapers and magazines. Which medical condition is this film based on?
14) • The animal XY, despite their common name, are neither in the Y family, nor are they from X, being a famous example of misnomers. • These animals played a major role in the establishment of germ theory in the late 19th century, through the experiments of Louis Pasteur, Émile Roux, and Robert Koch. They have also been launched into orbital spaceflight several times, first by the USSR on the Sputnik 9 biosatellite of March 9, 1961 – with a successful recovery. • Which animal?
15)This is an example of an anechoric chamber. • Situated at Orfield Laboratories, Minnesota, USA, what record does this room hold?
World’s most silent room.
16) What is this a list of? Also, FITB.
Most no. of patents.
17) • In 1909, Mark Twain is quoted as saying: • “I came in with ____ in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don't go out with ____. The Almighty has said, no doubt: Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.” • His prediction was accurate; Twain died of a heart attack on April 21, 1910. • What was he talking about?
18) • Discovery of Ta(2) has a famous story. These numbers are called ____ numbers, owing to the fact that the one of the persons involved with Ta(2) saw the number on a ____ and reported it to the other person. The subsequent ____ numbers were found with the help of computers. • What are they called? FITB. • Also, give Ta(2). • (picture on the next slide)
Taxicab numbers; 1729. • As told by Hardy about the Hardy-Ramanujan number: • I remember once going to see him when he was lying ill at Putney. I had ridden in taxi-cab No. 1729, and remarked that the number seemed to be rather a dull one, and that I hoped it was not an unfavourable omen. “No”, he replied, “it is a very interesting number; it is the smallest number expressible as the sum of two [positive] cubes in two different ways.”
Same genus and species name. • • • • • • Lynx lynx. Bison bison. Gorilla gorilla. Hyena hyena. Indicator indicator. Iguana iguana.
20) • The distance between the earth and sun is __ times the sun’s diameter. The distance between the earth and the moon is __ times the moon’s diameter. The diameter of the sun is __ times the diameter of the earth. • In ayurvedic practice, it is believed that the body has __ pressure points where consciousness and flesh intersect to create life. • These are two of the many explanations given by __rockstarguitars.com about why they chose this particular number. • Which number is being talked about? • Hint: in Assam (and many other states), this number is now more famous for something else.
21) • Connect the cities to an institute.
• The structures will be identified (except the last one) as a hint, if everyone agrees.
Indian Statistical Institute.
22) • Designed by NASA, where is this spacesuit inspired from?
23) • Who designed the structure of Montreal Biosphere? (bigger picture next slide)
24) • Elise Andrew is a British blogger, social media specialist, science communicator, and a webmaster. She founded something over Facebook just for fun, which immensely became very popular and resulted in her being called “the Neil deGrasse Tyson of Facebook”. It was then expanded and went on to be a website and now also has a merchandise site. • What did she found?
I Fucking Love Science!
25) • After his most famous discovery, he was confident of winning the Nobel Prize in Physics, but was disappointed when the Nobel Prize went to Richardson that year and to de Broglie the next year. He was so confident of winning the prize the next year that he booked tickets in July, even though the awards were to be announced in November, and would scan each day's newspaper for announcement of the prize, tossing it away if it did not carry the news. He did eventually win that year’s Nobel Prize in Physics. • Who?
C V Raman.
Finals starting in half an hour*** ***Terms and conditions applied. • See you in the finals. It’s going to be legen… wait for it… dary!
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