Jun 30, 2013


This Indian actor deservedly won a Special Jury Award at the 60th National Film Awards (presented in 2013) for four films: "Kahaani", "Dekh Indian Circus" and "Talaash", and which other film (or films!)?

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This day last year: Q.639

Jun 29, 2013


Sharda Ugra is a noted cricket writer and currently a columnist with ESPN Cricinfo. 2013 saw the publication of a book that she co-authored, called "The Test of my Life". Whose biography was this?

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This day last year: Q.638

Jun 28, 2013


This great director's last directorial release came in 2010 with "Mr. Dough and the Egg Princess" (the English title under which the Japanese film was released). This year saw the release of the English version of his son Goro's film "From Up on Poppy Hill", which he wrote. But what will make his fans really happy is the release of his latest directorial venture "The Wind Is Rising".

Name this director, who created the 2011 winner of the Oscar for Best Animated Film.

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This day last year: Q.637

Jun 27, 2013


The first ever such meeting was held in 1971, in Singapore. This meeting recurs every two years. India hosted it in 1983.

This year's edition, to be held in Sri Lanka, will be only the second time that the group's Head will not participate. The only other occasion? The same 1971 meeting mentioned above.

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This day last year: Q.636

Jun 26, 2013


(Did you notice this is our 1000th day of IZ? Thank you for helping us get this far. Some more celebration later in the month! The first IZ question was about Roger Federer, so here is one more.)

The world of tennis fashion was abuzz during the 2013 Gerry Weber Open at Halle (one of the traditional pre-Wimbledon tournaments) when Roger Federer stepped out on court without something during his doubles match partnering Tommy Haas. Apparently, it's been more than a decade since this has happened.

It didn't help much, as they lost. He said afterwards: "It was fun. A bit naked, but felt good for a change."

He did win the singles, with it. What is "it"?

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This day last year: Q.635

Jun 25, 2013


At the "Cork Open" tournament in Ireland in April 2013, Gabriel Mirza was prevented from taking further part in the contest after he manhandled his 16 year old opponent, pulling him out of a toilet. The opponent was also disqualified for cheating.

Which sport, and what was the cheating incident?

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This day last year: Q.634

Jun 24, 2013


Russia's space agency announced in early 2013 that Russian astronauts will take an unusual piece of cargo to the International Space Station later in the year (planned for October). This will be done as part of a longer route involving that item. Some of the astronauts will take that item with them during a special space walk.

The item will return a month later and the rest of the route will resume. What item, and why?

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This day last year: Q.633

Jun 23, 2013


The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, J. Jayalalithaa announced to the State Assembly, plans for a gigantic statue in the historic city of Madurai. It is being inevitably seen as a counter to the previous regime's statue of the poet Thiruvalluvar at Kanyakumari, with hints being dropped to it outsizing that stature.

Which "mother", representing an abstract but fond Tamil concept, is this statue of?

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This day last year: Q.632

Jun 22, 2013


As is customary, Li Keqiang (the Chinese Premier) made and kept an appointment with a Mumbai family at the Taj Mahal hotel during his visit to India in May 2013. The family members consisted of someone's sister, grand-nieces and grand-nephews.

Whose family?

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This day last year: Q.631

Jun 21, 2013


One of the most celebrated Hindustani classical musicians, this singer passed away in May 2013. He composed music for a film called "The Cloud Door" directed by his student, the filmmaker Mani Kaul.

Who is this singer?

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This day last year: Q.630

Jun 20, 2013


The 2013 Confederations Cup brings together in competition the top team from each of the seven FIFA confederations and the last World Cup winner. Six of the participating teams are Spain (World & Euro Cup winners), Brazil (hosts), Japan (Asia), Mexico (North & Central America), Uruguay (South America) and Nigeria (Africa).

Which team (not usually associated with football) is representing Oceania? Which team is also representing Europe since European champions Spain also won the World Cuo?

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This day last year: Q.629

Jun 19, 2013


This vehicle company was founded in 1903, and so is celebrating its 110th anniversary in 2013. A series of events have been organised and a slogan of "110 years of freedom" is being used. One of the two major events was held in Rome and even the Vatican (somewhat incongruously), where the Pope blessed the vehicles and its users.

The other one will be in the city where the company HQ is located i.e. Milwaukee, during the Labour Day weekend in September.

Which company?

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This day last year: Q.628

Jun 18, 2013


The richest and easily the most prestigious of its kind in Britain, which annual event's 2013 edition (sponsored by Investec Bank) was won by the aptly named "Ruler of the World"?

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This day last year: Q.627

Jun 17, 2013


His initials contribute fifty percent to the name of the famous company he founded in 1943, while another twenty five percent comes from the farm where he was born. He resigned from the company's board in June 2013 after a very and successful innings.

Which businessman, also author of "A Testament of a Furniture Dealer", is this?

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This day last year: Q.626

Jun 16, 2013


An announcement in 2010 said that the inaugural form of this tournament would be held in 2013, but eventually, the idea got cancelled, supposedly due to financial reasons. This is now scheduled for 2017, replacing the ICC Champions Trophy (the last edition being held in June 2013).

Which tournament?

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This day last year: Q.625

Jun 15, 2013


"Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike" won the award for Best Play at the 2013 Tony Awards (the annual prizes for the best work in theatre in America). The play written by Chris Durang does have characters called Vanya, Sonia, Masha, and Spike. The first three characters get their names from which master from literature?

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This day last year: Q.624

Jun 14, 2013


Though he never really went away, his latest (and better marketed) playback singing stint has been dubbed a "comeback".

His last few film album appearances in the likes of "Madholal: Keep Walking" and in an ensemble voice cast in Toonpur Ka Superhero did not in any way approach the success of his 1997 album, or even the minor playtime of his song in "Company".

Who is this singer, who is featuring in the song "Jholu Ram" in "Ghanchakkar", along with Amit Trivedi?

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This day last year: Q.623

Jun 13, 2013


From the "about" page of a popular application:

The idea for ___ originated years ago, when Ehud Shabtai, a software engineer [...] from Tel Aviv University, was given a PDA with an external GPS device pre-installed with navigation software. Ehud's initial excitement quickly gave way to disappointment when he saw that the product didn't reflect the dynamic changes that characterize real conditions on the road, or have real-time info, like where speed traps were located.

Shabtai started the open source project "Freemap", then co-founded a company called "Linqmap", before the name was changed to the blank in the passage above.

What name, and why the recent fame?

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This day last year: Q.622

Jun 12, 2013


Iain Banks, a noted writer of general fiction and science fiction, passed away in June 2013. Among his many interests was whiskey from his native Scotland - this knowledge also helping him win a Celebrity version of which British quiz show?
[+ Show Answer] This day last year: Q.621

Jun 11, 2013


"World War Z" is a 2013 Hollywood film starring and co-produced by Brad Pitt who plays a UN employee in the story. The film is based on a book of the same name written by Max Brooks.

What does the "Z" in the title stand for?

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This day last year: Q.620

Jun 10, 2013


This week's IZzie

What is this list about, and who is the latest addition (some may say casualty):

  • 2005: Mariano Puerta (Argentina)
  • 2006: Roger Federer (Switzerland)
  • 2007: Roger Federer (Switzerland)
  • 2008: Roger Federer (Switzerland)
  • 2010: Robin Soderling (Sweden)
  • 2011: Roger Federer (Switzerland)
  • 2012: Novak Djokovic (Serbia)
[+ Show Answer] This day last year: Q.619

Jun 9, 2013


"Ek Thi Daayan" was a 2013 Hindi film starring Emraan Hashmi, Konkona Sen Sharma, and Huma Qureshi, and contained a plot about magicians and witches. As the film neared release, a lady named Ipsita Roy Chakraverti wrote to the National Commission for Women, complaining that the film's content was offensive to witches, and asked them to take action against it.

Which religion does Chakraverti profess, that explains why she took such a position?

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This day last year: Q.618

Jun 8, 2013


For the last couple of years, MasterCard has been publishing an annual list of top "Destination Cities", providing data on which cities are most visited. London, which topped the 2012 list, was ranked at the 2nd spot this year, with Paris at no. 3.

Which Asian city was on top of this list for 2013?
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This day last year: Q.617

Jun 7, 2013


Cyeda Sungur, who works at a Technical University, has come to be known as "The Lady in Red", after being photographed (in her red dress and white satchel) at the receiving end of a pepper spray and water hose. For protests in which country has she become the unlikely and somewhat unwilling face?

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This day last year: Q.616

Jun 6, 2013


Le Petit Robert is a popular French dictionary that is more open to admitting popular words than the keepers of the official French language. The latest edition made news for its inclusion of the (admittedly tongue-in-cheek) word 'galocher'.

The word is a derivation of the word 'galoche' ("ice-skating boot"); the meaning has nothing (at least literally) to do with sport, but is associated with something "French". So what does this word stand for?

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This day last year: Q.615

Jun 5, 2013


In 2013, Russell Crowe will be seen playing this character on screen. Marlon Brando memorably played this in 1978, and curiously, also in 2006 (even though he was dead for a couple of years by then). You could also stretch things a little to include Dharmendra (in 1987) in this select group?

What is the connection? Is it an avian of some sort? No.

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This day last year: Q.614

Jun 4, 2013


This country passed a new tourism law in April 2013, that will come into effect in October. During its discussion, a top official also urged its citizens to behave properly while touring overseas, noting several complaints in recent times.

This problem hit global headlines when a boy was found to have defaced a temple wall in Luxor, Egypt.

Which country, that seems to share a Indian mentality to marking its presence at monuments?

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This day last year: Q.613

Jun 3, 2013


Time for this week's IZzie

For what reasons, related to a very different sport, was the President of the All India Chess Federation in the Indian news for most of the end of May 2013?

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This day last year: Q.612

Jun 2, 2013


Lydia Davis is the 2013 winner of the Man Booker International Prize, a biennial literary award that is not bound by any geographical considerations, unlike the more famous Man Booker Prize. A translator, essayist, and novel writer, she is best known for a literary format that is perhaps tailor-made for Twitter.

What format?

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This day last year: Q.611

Jun 1, 2013


News Corporation, the Rupert Murdoch-led media house, has been split into two companies (the board approved this split in May 2013). The one that will focus on its newspaper and publishing businesses will continue to be called "News Corporation".

The other one will look after entertainment, movies, and media assets of the company, such as Fox and Star TV. Its name is an appropriate update of one of its best known brands, symbolically ushering itself into modern times.

What name?

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This day last year: Q.610


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