2005 Games and Contests
Too many kids, and a fair share of old farts, think the world runs on cat-5. It just ain't so! From the first smoke-signals and drumbeats of prehistory, to modern muti-gigabit optical links, there's a lot more to communication than just Ethernet frames riding twisted pair. This contest aims to celebrate the varied history of communication.
The goal of Anything But Ethernet is to construct the:
- Most Varied, or
- Most Absurd
Awards will be given for each of the 5 categories listed above. Each category will be scored on its own, "points" aren't comparable between categories. Entries can be made individually or as a team.
Fastest: This is pretty simple, it requires computers on both ends of the link, and the goal will be to transfer a sizable file as quickly as possible. We'll probably make it a movie or some random data, so don't count on link compression to help! You'll get a point for each type of encoding or media used, multiplied by your throughput. Ethernet links are permissible, but they don't count towards your score. (Example, if you have a token-ring-to-ethernet bridge, and ethernet-to-fddi bridge, you can connect them with a short 10base-T cable, but you'll only score 2 link points, not 3.)
Slowest: No artificial slowdowns allowed! Scrounge up the most decrepit, pathetic, but awesome-in-its-heyday gear you can find. 300 baud modems are a good starting point, but never underestimate the possibilities of paper tape streaming between the punch and the reader. Scoring in this category is purely at the judges' discretion, and coolness points will be awarded for anything involving Morse code, acoustic couplers, or tin cans. Input and output need not be computerized. (A daisywheel printout of the transmission is fine.)
Longest: Similar to the fastest category, this is just link points multiplied by link distance. Your end stations can be right next to each other, as long as the data takes a very long route between them. Again, Ethernet links are acceptable as intermediaries, but they don't help your score. Hint: there's a digipeater aboard the international space station.
Most Varied: One point per segment of unique wired/cabled media. Two points per hop of radio or free-space optics. Zero points for 10, 100, or 1000base-T segments. Half a point for 10base-2 or any other obscure Ethernet format, but remember each type only counts once no matter how many times you use it.
Most Absurd: Judges' discretion. Nuff said.
The ultimate trivia challenge returns to Notacon! This year promises to be the most harrowing challenge yet, with questions pulled from hacker history and technology, the arts and music, as well as "pop quiz" material from the day's talks. Expect a couple of Notacon inside jokes for good measure!
Whether on a team or heckling those that are, by the time the show is over, everyone is participating as questions unanswered by the panel of "experts" are thrown back to the crowd.
With Special Guest Judges: The Ladies of Notacon
Contestants will have 3 to 5 minutes to perform the talent of their choice. Groups may also compete, with a maximum number of 3 people per group. Sign-ups will occur at the registration desk on Friday and Saturday prior to the event. All Notacon participants are encouraged to participate.
As for talents, the sky's the limit. Can you sing? Play an instrument... maybe even in an unusual way? Regurgitate Windows XP CD Keys by heart? Maybe you're good at drawing caricatures? Whatever your talent (or lack thereof), compete with fellow con-goers for prizes and recognition. Embarrassment is almost assured, and those watching have just as much fun as the contestants themselves. On the other hand, you may also realize that some of your friends have talents you never even knew existed.
Depending on participation, we may we set up a bracket system, or otherwise have semi-final and final rounds.
A list of items and clues will be available at the registration desk. Sign up to be eligible either by yourself or in teams of up to five. Prizes for the top 3 winners will be substantial and not every item on the list will be easy to get. Creativity in the face of uncertainty may be rewarded.
Can you complete the list during Notacon and still manage to catch a few talks. and maybe a few hours of sleep? Can you do so without getting your lame ass thrown in jail (we sure hope so, at least). Test your meddle and find out.
Judging will be done on Sunday prior to closing ceremonies. Information will be available at the registration desk.
After three tireless days working the event, Froggy will clutch the podium for dear life and hand out awards to the remaining Notacon attendees for whatever categories he comes up with at the last minute.
Traveled the furthest to get here? Had the funniest hack of Notacon? You name it, he'll likely think of it, if he's still awake and sane. Prizes will be handed out at his discretion.