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877,934 quizzes played * 1,094 active players * US$68,962 in prizes awarded
Question Answer
Sometimes people answer a quiz so quickly (such as 5 seconds) that it doesn't seem possible for them to have and read understood the question. Don't you think they are cheating and why do you allow this? It is certainly quite possible that a person answering so quickly (and correctly) is cheating by taking the quiz under a different account, figuring out the correct answers, and then submitting the answer under their "real" account. It is also possible that they knew that subject very well or simply guessed.

Rather than automatically reject such answers, we analyze player patterns over a longer period of time, usually no less than two weeks. We then make adjustments to the timings and ranks of those players who answer, cumulatively, in so short an amount of time that there is no way to distinguish their pattern of play from someone who would be cheating.

Bottom line: Don't get mad if you see a very fast answer. Chances are, justice is just around the corner:

If a person has registered more than once, and then uses one account to grab the quiz and another to answer, they can end up with very consistently fast answer times, perhaps even faster than we and many other players believe is humanly possible. It is, unfortunately, very difficult to unambiguously determine if cheating is occurring in this way. Consequently, we will put rules in place that should discourage this kind of answering pattern.

For each quiz, we will determine and record the minimum number of seconds that we believe a player would need to actually read and answer the question. This number will not be made public. Of course, this is to some extent a subjective determination on our part. We will, however, be conservative in setting this value; if any of you saw the number, you would immediately agree that it is sensible and acceptable as a lower limit. You will, however, have to trust us.

We will also take the quiz and record the number of seconds it takes to do so. This will be the "expert's timing"; we figure that since Steven wrote almost all of these questions and knows PL/SQL pretty well that he should be able to answer these questions just about as fast as anyone else. This number will also not be made public.

We will then use this data discourage what we consider to be unreasonably rapid answers. The steps we take will vary, but are likely to include one or more of the following:

• Randomly enforce the minimum number of seconds. On randomly-selected days of the month, the score of all players whose timing is less than the minimum will be set to 0. You will not know on which days this occurs until after rankings are performed, and the application of this rule can be applied retroactively at any time during the month.

• Add seconds to the times for very fast answers for those players whose total time to answer in a given period (not less than two weeks) is less than the time it takes the expert to answer the quizzes. The amount by which your times will be changed will increase the bigger the gap between your total time and the expert's total time. Note that we reserve the right to implement other steps to discourage unreasonably rapid answers; you may not receive prior notification of these steps. We will also analyze player patterns to determine if there are players who routinely answer more quickly than the minimum timing we have recorded.