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Showing posts from August, 2014

Q.1431

The first in this book series was published in 2013, and involved the call of a bird from the family of Cuculidae, usually considered crazy. The second, published in 2014, involved a different animal, this time the larva of the Bombyx mori insect.

What series and what is the second called?

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This day last year: Q.1066

Q.1430

On the night of 11 Aug 2014, the television channel BBC Three aired an episode of the animated show "Family Guy" called "Fatman and Robin" (this episode was made in 2012). In this, the lead character of the show (called Peter Griffin) gains the power to turn everyone he touches into a clone of somebody. After this goes out of control, Griffin attempts to stop it by trying to snuff his own life out.

The next day, media outlets were buzzing with what was undoubtedly a freak coincidence. What?

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This day last year: Q.1065

Q.1429

Based on a guest question by Arvind M | contribute questions

In 2011, a camera belonging to the photographer David Slater was used to take this photo in Indonesia. The photo found its way to Wikipedia, which Slater objected to, saying its free availability by Wikimedia cost him royalties. In 2014, the US Copyright Office ruled in favour of Wikipedia, saying this belonged to the public.

So what was different about this photo?

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This day last year: Q.1064

Q.1428

A guest question by Ashutosh Bapat | contribute questions

This logo from Indian sports was designed to indicate the four essential qualities required by a player playing the sport: strength, strategy, speed and stamina.

First held in 2014, what is this the logo of?

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This day last year: Q.1063

Q.1427

In August 2014, the Indian Minister for IT launched the first ever top-level domain name in the Devanagaari script (which is used to write languages such as Hindi). This provides an option of registering domain names ending in a word related to the country written in this script (akin to .in or .co.in).

What does this launched domain name end in?

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This day last year: Q.1062

A Kaun Banega Crorepati (KBC) appearance

This blogger will appear on the popular Indian quiz show 'Kaun Banega Crorepati' (KBC), the Indian version of 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire', through the week of 25-28 August. He is part of a three man 'expert' (ahem) panel called 'Triguni' (a desi version of 'Three Wise Men', a lifeline on the show).

The show airs on the Sony TV channel at 8:30 pm IST with several repeats during the week. We believe it's also streamed on the official website and app (http://kbcsony.com).

Q.1426

You normally do not expect players to die during matches in this sport. In August 2014, on the final day of this annual international team event, a 65-year old player named Kurt Meier (representing Seychelles) died of a heart attack while play was in progress. Another player, an Uzbek, representing a team made of deaf players also died the same day (in an unrelated incident).

Which sport, and which annual event, in which India's team picked up a bronze medal?

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This day last year: Q.1061

Q.1425

In 2013, Actor 1 wore a piece of apparel on a TV show he hosts to promote Film 1 featuring Actor 2. In 2014, based on whatever had been revealed of an upcoming 2014 film featuring Actor 2, Actor 2 dared Actor 1 to wear a similar 'outfit' on the same TV show.

In Film 2, Actor 2's character is rumoured to play something or someone trying to be human. So identify the people involved in this sneak peek.

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This day last year: Q.1060

Q.1424

Europeans, especially Spanish explorers and colonialists, were thought to have brought this to the people of South America. However, a 2014 study published in the science journal 'Nature' claimed that this was already present in marine animals such as seals off the coast of modern-day Peru & Chile.

To do this, the researchers studied skeletons from that time period for scars, since lungs from these remains were obviously not available after such a long time. What is the subject of this study?

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This day last year: Q.1059

Q.1423

A guest question by Vaibhav Bajpai | contribute questions

Confusion prevailed over the exact number of participants in a significant historical event during IndiaĆ¢€™s independence struggle. Many records mentioned that 78 people were involved, however two more were discovered - Kharag Bahadur Singh Giri from Nepal and Satish Kalelkar from Maharashtra, which completed the profiling of 80 unsung heroes for an art memorial, opened for public display within IIT Bombay premises in February 2014.

Which historical event was commemorated with an art memorial within IIT Bombay in February 2014?

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This day last year: Q.1058

Q.1422

A guest question by Avinav Prakash | contribute questions

Brandon Stanton is a photographer who strolls the streets of his city, taking pictures of passers-by and interviewing about their life experience. He then compiles the photos and captions on a blog and Facebook page, which have followers in millions.

In 2014, he has gone beyond boundaries to document street life in strife-torn places like Iraq, Jordan, Ukraine, Congo, South Sudan among others, as a part of a UN-sponsored tour.

What is this famous blog, administered by him?

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This day last year: Q.1057

Q.1420

Created in 1950 by the then Prime Minister of India, the beginning of its end was announced on 15th August, 2014, by the present Prime Minister. Two later Prime Ministers and a later President have headed its day-to-day functioning. Its members were once dismissed as a bunch of jokers by another Prime Minister.

What?

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This day last year: Q.1055

Q.1419

A guest question by Avinav Prakash | contribute questions

Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad of France was well ahead of his competitors in the 3000m steeplechase at the European Athletics championships 2014 in Zurich. He went on to finish the race first. However, he was stripped of his gold medal, because of a certain mid-race antic.

What did he do to get kicked out?

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This day last year: Q.1054

Q.1418

These two former Soviet republics have been at loggerheads for many years over a region called Nagorno-Karabakh. In 2014, thanks to a series of tweets by the President of the one of the countries claiming that a 'state of war' now existed between the two, several media outlets (somewhat outrageously) reported this as the first ever declaration of war over Twitter.

Which two countries are these?

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This day last year: Q.1053

Q.1417

A guest question by Ashutosh Bapat | contribute questions

Begum Akhtar was a legendary vocalist. A 2014 Hindi film included an adaptation of one of her best-known thumris at its end. In a sense, it followed the convention that the raga, in which it is rendered, is played at the end of a concert. (Technically, the song's raga is derived from the concert-ending raga.)

Which film and song?

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This day last year: Q.1052

Q.1416

Based on a guest question by Shaival Patel | contribute questions

James Brady, a former US government employee and White House staffer in the 1980s, passed away in August 2014. Unusually, his cause of death was officially recorded as a 'homicide', judging that his death was due to injuries he suffered in 1981.

What event from 33 years ago was this a reference to?

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This day last year: Q.1051

Q.1415

In 2014, Maryam Mirzakhani became the first woman to win an award which has been described as the Mathematics equivalent of an award that the physicist Marie Curie was the first woman to win. What two awards are we talking of?

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This day last year: Q.1050

Q.1413

"AL 288-1" is the technical name given to the skeletal remains of a female from the human-like species of Australopithecus afarensis. Discovered in 1974, it acquired a nickname. This nickname is also the title of a 2014 Hollywood thriller in which this pre-historic female was referenced.

Which film?

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This day last year: Q.1048

Q.1411

"Swarm" is the name of a new mobile app launched in May 2014. The app's biggest feature comes from another earlier app by the same company, and has been modified such that there can be several people who claim 'leadership' of a location, not just one.

What feature and what is the other app?

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This day last year: Q.1046

Q.1410

The Egyptian port of Rashid was the scene of the discovery of a famous artifact in 1799. It eventually lent its name to a vehicle that approached an astronomical discovery by the astronomers Svetlana Gerasimenko and Klim Churyumov.

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What is this name?

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This day last year: Q.1045

Q.1409

Based on a guest question by Prasanna Narayanan | contribute questions

'e-Vidhan' is the name of an e-Governance solution that has been used to implement India's first ever high-tech legislative house that automates the day to day functioning of the entire Legislative Assembly. Which state in India is the first to introduce this?

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This day last year: Q.1044

Q.1408

In 2014, the e-commerce site Amazon.com and the book publisher Hachette have been embroiled in a tussle over pricing of e-books. Several authors have taken Hachette's side, signing an open letter in August 2014 protesting against Amazon's stance.

An Amazon spokesperson asked Hachette to "stop using their authors as ___ ____". The blanked out phrase here has been used often in another, greater, conflict from 2014. What phrase?

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This day last year: Q.1043

Q.1407

The great footballer Alfredo di Stefano died in July 2014. He played international football for his country of birth, Argentina, his adopted home of Spain, and even a couple of unofficial matches for Colombia during a period in the early 50s when the Colombians were not part of FIFA.

This period ended in confusion and turmoil, with Spanish clubs Real Madrid and Barcelona both trying to sign him from two of his former clubs who claimed to 'own' him. To end this confusion, the Spanish Federation decided on what compromise formula?

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This day last year: Q.1042

Q.1406

Despite being only two films old, the Tamil film director Kartik Subbaraj has already obtained a cult following among several Indian film watchers. A Hindi remake of his first film was released in July 2014, while his second Tamil film was released a couple of weeks later.

The titles of both films have something to do with food and beverages. What are these two films?

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This day last year: Q.1041

Q.1405

"The Little Box Challenge" is a competition launched by Google & IEEE in 2014. This offers a million dollars to anyone who invents the smallest 'little box', which, if it comes through will significantly affect the economics of such things as electric cars and household equipment.

'Little box' refers to miniaturizing what kind of electrical equipment?

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This day last year: Q.1040

Q.1404

The Eisner Awards are considered the highest prize in the field of American comic books, and are given away at the annual 'Comic-Con' in San Diego.

2014's award for Best Digital Comic went to a website (known for its comics) run by Matthew Inman, who named it after something he didn't particularly like eating. Which website?

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This day last year: Q.1039

Indian Elections Special

In May 2014, we had invited guest questions for a special on India's General Elections - but thanks to a combination of work and laziness, we never finished putting that together, until today - apologies to all those who sent questions in and thought they had made a donation to a black hole.

Questions by Vaibhav Bajpai (who sent in several excellent questions - here are a selection)


1. In 1982, mid-term Assembly elections were held in Kerela due to the fall of the LDF (Left Democratic Front) led state government. Among the 140 seats, CPI’s Sivan Pillai won the seat from Parur assembly constituency defeating A.C Jose, a Congress(A) candidate by a slender margin of 123 votes only. The legitimacy of Sivan Pillai’s win was challenged in the Supreme Court citing violation of an electoral process across 50 polling booths.

What was alleged as a violation of electoral process in 1982 Kerela Assembly Elections?
2. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) made a characteristic debut during the 2014 General Elections by offering a political alternative to the traditional parties within Indian Politics. Another such alternative also made a silent debut that gave a reasonable fight to the candidates, garnering 1.1% of the total votes polled (~60 Lakh votes) and achieving an impactful 3rd place across multiple seats ahead of many established parties like the JD(U), CPI, JD(S), SAD etc.

Which other political alternative made an impactful debut along side AAP during the 2014 General Elections?

What product has a sole proprietary of manufacturing by this company?

3. Phulpur in UP’s Allahabad district was brought out of anonymity once again during the 2014 elections when celebrity and Indian cricketer Mohammed Kaif contested for the Congress party. The constituency carries a special place election history for its association with two Prime Ministers of India. For one, thrice electing India’s first Prime Minister Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru.

Who was the second Prime Minister of India other than Pt. Nehru that once got elected from Phulpur?



Question by Anshul Q Inc.

4. Free India had its first election for Lok Sabha in 1951, which the grand old party Congress, won with a thumping majority.In these elections the total no. of elected MPs were 489, while the no. of constituencies was only 400.The story was similar in the second General Elections of 1957.But this changed in the third election onwards.

What reason can you think of for such inequality of seats and constituencies?


Question by Atharva Kelkar

5. Some of the countries that this firm exports to are Cambodia, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Togo, Sierra Leone among many others.

Established in 1937 and renamed in 1989, this came in the news during the 2014 Genera Elections due to something controversial said by Shri Sharad Pawar. Which firm are we talking about? What was said?


Question by Srikant Nair

6. This north-eastern state had 2 Lok Sabha constituencies in the 2014 General Elections, which could be said to be "inception constituencies". Which constituencies and in which state?


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Q.1403

Based on a guest question by Prasanna Narayanan | contribute questions

This 2014 mobile game app is built by Glu Mobile and became instantly popular. Set in Hollywood, the game's 'currency' is various forms of 'energy' such as K-stars and energy bolts. Using that, players can try to become 'famous' and try to become A-listers in Hollywood.

Which socialite-star lends her name and much of her life & personality to this game?

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This day last year: Q.1038

Q.1402

Based on a guest question by Vaibhav Bajpai | contribute questions

The FIFA World 2014 could be said to be a jungle out there. Kangaroos learnt to play soccer for the "Socceroos" from Australia, "Super Eagles" flew all the way from Nigeria, a skulk of foxes would be more trickier than "Les Fennecs" from Algeria, "The Indomitable Lions" from Cameroon were easily tamed, "The Three Lions" stopped roaring for England, the "Zmajevi" or the "Dragons" from Bosnia & Herzegovina were too young to create a scare...

Where did the herd of "Les Elephants" come from during 2014 FIFA World Cup?

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This day last year: Q.1037

Q.1401

A guest question by Shivam Kumar | contribute questions

Air India's then commercial director Bobby Kooka and Umesh Rao, an artist with J. Walter Thompson Ltd created 'it' which was adopted in its present form in 1946. In 2014, the new Indian PM Narendra Modi reportedly asked the minister concerned to replace 'it' with something. What change did he suggest which reminds us of a political party among others?

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This day last year: Q.1036