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BCS Championship and Sporcle

The holiday season is upon us, and for sports fans, that means college football and the BCS Championship series.

It’s that time of year when college football comes to an end and college basketball is just beginning, when team rivalries mix with family get-togethers, and when shouts at the TV are powered by Christmas cookies and eggnog.

Historically, there has been general frustration about the logic and fairness of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) picks. Regardless, the final BCS standings are out and picks have been made. Speculations and predictions have begun, fans are buying tickets, and here at Sporcle HQ we’re on the lookout for quality 2012 college bowl quizzes.

No. 1 Notre Dame and No. 2 Alabama take each other on in the BCS championship game, which will be played on January 7 in Miami. Both teams are major powerhouses, though when it comes to Sporcle quizzes, Notre Dame football quizzes have more plays than Alabama. Not that popularity or trivia-worthiness has anything to do with performance.

Notre Dame has always chosen to set themselves apart, simply by refusing to join a conference for football and remaining independent all these years. That alone is a piece of trivia that Alabama just lacks. But Alabama does have historically high rankings, along with two BCS Championship wins in the last three years, to give them some extra confidence.

Rounding out the BCS Bowl Games:
Rose Bowl: No. 6 Stanford vs. Wisconsin
Fiesta Bowl: No. 4 Oregon vs. No. 5 Kansas State
Orange Bowl: No. 12 Florida State vs. No. 15 Northern Illinois
Sugar Bowl: No. 3 Florida vs. No. 21 Louisville

Want to take a walk down memory lane? Consider playing the BCS Championship Game quizzes from the last few years:

2011/12: LSU vs. Alabama
2010/11:  Auburn vs. Oregon
2009/10: Texas vs. Alabama

In the weeks ahead, as you sit on the couch watching hours of football, remember Sporcle. We’re here to break the monotony of  stale holiday commercials, drawn-out delays for challenged plays, and defensive battles which leave you wanting some added excitement.

 

Goodbye to Hostess, Hello to the Holidays

Congrats! You’ve made it to Friday, the final day of the traditional work week. And just as people in your office might be in-and-out throughout the day, there’s a few big names that are arriving and departing from our lives.

Hostess closes its doors

After an extended Baker’s Union strike, Hostess made the decision Friday to shut down. There’s plans to sell its products, but everyone knows the Twinkie will never be the same. As the nation mourns this loss, prepare for a lot of Hostess tributes. Even if you didn’t really like those snack cakes, you have to admit that they were pretty iconic. 

Here’s some quick links to fill you in:

Final Twilight film hits theaters
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 has finally been released to theaters, ending the long-lasting saga of vampires, werewolves, and teenage love. As the final installment arrives to theaters, the series’ fans face the end of the franchise.

Check out Entertainment Weekly’s field research from the opening night (‘Twilight: Breaking Dawn–Part 2′: On-the-scene for fan reactions)

And don’t forget about Sporcle’s Twilight Quizzes:

Holiday season here again

Let’s face it, the holiday season has already arrived. But with Thanksgiving less than a week away, the real countdown to the holiday shopping season is here. We’ve just said goodbye to political ads, and now we’re saying hello to holiday shopping ads. Check out the following links as you get in the holiday spirit.

300,000 Sporcle Quizzes and Counting!

Celebrate! Sporcle passed the 300,000 quiz mark!

That’s 300,000 free trivia quizzes, available every hour of the day, every day of the week, every day of the year. That’s 300,000 ways to test your trivia knowledge and prove your smarts. That’s at least one quiz for every man, woman, and child in the country of Barbados (But not yet enough quizzes for the people of Belize…)

This is a milestone for ALL members of the Sporcle community. To quiz creators, thank you for your creativity and hard work–because of you, we have quality quizzes to publish. To the rest of the Sporcle team, thank you for insuring that the site runs smoothly and for all the awesome new features. Finally, to all faithful Sporclers, thank you for visiting the site and playing all our mentally stimulating diversions–because of you, this entire effort is worthwhile.

Celebrate! A toast to good health and future Sporcle endeavors!

Welcome to Sporcle University

Over time, we’ve had many requests for a Sporcle forum where users can post messages to each other to discuss issues of the site at large, or just learn how to make better quizzes. We looked at our options and now we’ve created a Google group called Sporcle University.

Sporcle University is an open forum where anyone can post questions or comments and talk about just about any Sporcle-related thing they want. Things are just getting started, but if you have any thoughts or questions, post them on the forum, or contact us directly from our Feedback page.

Brooklyn Nets Have Arrived on Sporcle

It always causes a bit of a stir at Sporcle HQ when major sports teams change their name or move to a different city. In the last year alone, we’ve had the Atlanta Thrashers morph into the Winnipeg Jets and the Florida Marlins become the Miami Marlins. These small name changes can wreak havok on Sporcle, as many of our quizzes include specific questions about where teams are from or the first letter of their name. The latest in this long saga is the New Jersey Nets, who have now become the Brooklyn Nets.

As for how this effects the site, it primarily changes quizzes where you need to name the ‘Big 4′  or NBA teams that fit the specified criteria. Earlier stat quizzes where a player may have a record acquired with the New Jersey Nets, will still display the old team name. If you happen to see a quiz that needs to be updated from New Jersey to Brooklyn, please submit a quiz report using the ‘Report a Quiz’ link or send us a note at our Feedback page.

Friday the 13th on Sporcle

If you’re reading this blog post and you’ve been on edge today, you might be one of the many people with paraskevidekatriaphobia, or rather, an unnatural fear or phobia of Friday the 13th.  Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Friday the 13th is a day that captivates many imaginations and locks into our superstitious fears, no matter who you are or where you are in the world. While its origins remain unclear, and a quick Google search will pull up millions of theories, one thing is sure: more people are superstitious towards this day than any other. It might have something to do with the unfortunate combination of the unlucky number 13 and the unlucky day of Friday (just a hunch),or the fact that we tend to pay more attention to misfortune on this day more than any other. Spilled coffee on Tuesday the 10th is just inconvenient, but spilled coffee on Friday the 13th carries the inevitable foreshadowing of doom and misfortune.

Read more

800 Million Plays and Counting…

Earlier today we crossed the 800 million game play mark. That’s an incredible number, and we want to thank all of our users for getting us here. In fact to adequately explain just how incredible it is, Hejman, a Sporcle moderator, emailed us the following facts to mark the occasion:

800 Million plays comes out to:

  • 2.56 plays for every American
  • 12.85 plays for every Briton
  • 34.87 plays for every Australian
  • 22.97 plays for every Canadian
  • 146.05 plays for every citizen of Kyrgyzstan
  • Each game on Sporcle has been played an average of 2,806 times. (Thanks to Bazmerelda for this one)
  • Since Sporcle’s inception in July 2007, there have been an average of 18,200+ quizzes played per hour, which is equivalent to just over 300 quizzes per minute or 5 quizzes every second. In the time it just took you to read this comment, there have been 50 quizzes completed. (Thanks to Brandon Anderson in the comments)

If you happen to find any more amazing facts about this impressive Sporcle achievement, please add them in the comments. Thanks again everyone, we’re extremely proud and humbled by just how many diversions we’ve caused.

Flerovium, Livermorium and You

The time has finally come. Sporcle has updated all of our science quizzes, including the classic Periodic Table, to honor and welcome two new elemental friends. Elements 114 and 116 have officially become flerovium and livermorium. The symbols for the new elements are Fl and Lv. Flerovium is named after the Russian physicist Georgy Flyorov, for whom the Flerov Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions is named. On the other hand, Livermorium is named after the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where much of this research is done. The Lawrence Livermore national lab already has the element lawrencium named after it, whereas Livermore is actually the name of the town. This is the first time in a long time that there has been a gap in the periodic table, as neither elements 113 nor 115 have yet been synthesized and reconfirmed. Of course, this just means we could yet have a Sporclium in the periodic table.

For those of you who are wondering just how an element is names, it goes like this: First a set of researchers (either in Germany, the US or Russia) creates a new element. Then, another set of researchers must recreate this experiment to confirm the results. The original group then has the right to name the element. They suggest a name to IUPAC (the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) who meets to see if they agree with the suggestions. Then after a period of 6 months, if no one has any complaints, the names are officially adopted.

Quizzes You Might Have Missed (May 2012)

It was a busy month here at Sporcle, and if you skipped a few days of Sporcling, you might just have missed one of the best quizzes of the month. Instead of just feeling bad about it, we thought we’d put together a monthly recap of all the most interesting games on Sporcle in May.

Take a look at our full list of top games below, and let us know about your favorites in the comments.

Top Featured Quizzes

Fun Non-Featured Gems

Top Blog Posts

 

The Retirement of the Mixed Word

It’s the end of an era on Sporcle. As many of you may have noticed, we’ve removed Mixed Word quizzes form the Sporcle’s Daily Dose. On Sporcle, Mixed Word became a daily Sporcle feature (and soon thereafter its own IOS app) in Fall 2010. Since then it has been featured every day, amounting to a genre of hundreds of quizzes. Sadly, all good things must come to an end (we still miss Arrested Development). While we realize some of you loved the Mixed Word, there weren’t enough people with an interest in playing them daily to warrant the amount of time and effort that went into creating them every day.

The good news is that there are still 11 game packs for the Sporcle app, and hundreds of Mixed Word quizzes on Sporcle.com (http://www.sporcle.com/games/subcategory/mixedword). So if you love Mixed Words, there still are lots and lots of games to play. Also, users are still free to make more Mixed Words on their own for other Mixed Word devotees on the site. We know Sporcle users are phenomenally creative, and if you really don’t want to see Mixed Words decline then make some on your own, or encourage others who’ve made really great ones to make more!

As a parting gift, we have updated the app with a no-timer option, so you can take your time when playing through the hundreds of Mixed Words you have yet to go through!

As Sporcle changes and develops, we’ll always try and provide relevant and fun content for the Sporcle community. While some things are left behind as we move into the future, we’ll always strive to keep the site informative, fresh, and entertaining.