“Astronomy is much more fun when you are not an astronomer”
All students fascinated with astronomy eagerly anticipated the fourth event of the esteemed Astronomy club of Manipal. Quizzar, as the name suggests, was a quiz testing one’s knowledge on the world of astronomy. The name, however, is the word used to describer the center of a black hole. Most participants would describe this as a title befitting the event.
Consisting of only one round, the event saw five teams competing in four different tasks, each more daunting than the last. The first task was a multiple choice question round with questions like “What was the first phrase spoken on the moon?” and “What is the surface temperature of the meteors impacting earth?”. The event was headed by Rohan Gupta who had presided over the speech on The Science of Interstellar. He made the arduous event more fun by dropping hints and cracking jokes to ease the tension in the room.
The second task required the contestants to identify the object in the pictures that were shown to them. This round saw beautiful images of various constellations, nebulas and of our universe. This preceded the third task which was, without a doubt, the most enjoyable. Questions on common myths and misconceptions about science fiction movies were asked, with references from Star Trek and Star Wars.
The last task was a rapid fire round which saw all participants hammering on the tables to be the first to get the answer out. If the replies were incorrect, the team was given a negative point. In spite of this, everyone was hopping with excitement and waiting for the next problems with enthusiasm. Questions like ‘How many golf balls are there on the moon?’ and ‘Which star was named after a character who was framed for murdering his godson’s parents?” were asked. (Any Potterheads here?)
Despite there being only a handful of contestants, Adhish Aggarwal was happy.
“This is the first time we are conducting a quiz in astronomy club. Even though the participation was less than I expected, I know everyone enjoyed the event,” he said.
These events were a must attend for all astronomy fans, but prior knowledge about the field would have been helpful as the quiz was rather difficult.
As Simon Newcomb once said,
“We are probably nearing the limit of all we can know about astronomy.”