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Tech Pub Quiz #2

Listed below are the questions to our virtual Tech Pub Quiz #2 event. We'll continue hosting regular tech quizzes starting in January. For 2021 though, this is our final quiz. Big thanks to everyone who participated! Congratulations again to Josh, Alberto, and Tom for their strong team performance.

Here are the questions! If you’re interested in joining for the next one, shoot me an email: jack [at] cord [dot] com.

A set of tech company logos. Answers at the end of the post! A set of tech company logos. Answers at the end of the post!

Round 2: Tech Booms and Busts

  1. When a privately held company reaches a valuation over $1B USD, it’s referred to as a ‘unicorn’ company. What’s the term for a privately held company that reaches more than $10B USD in valuation?
  2. According to CBInsights, there are currently over 900 privately held “unicorn” companies worth over $1B. Within that set there are just two companies worth over $100B USD — what are they?
  3. In 2018, a US tech company became the first ever trillion dollar company. What company was it?
  4. MySpace was acquired purchased by Specific Media Group and Justin Timberlake for $35M. How many billions was MySpace’s valuation at its peak in 2007?
  5. WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook for $19B with an active user base of 450 million. How many employees did WhatsApp have at that time?
  6. YouTube was originally an independent company, but was snapped up by Google for $1.6B. What year did Google acquire YouTube?
  7. This failed company took nearly $120M for it’s proprietary fruit bags and $600 fruit bag squeezing machine. It all fell apart when people on the internet filmed themselves just squeezing out the fruit juice by hand. What was the name of the company?
  8. This AR/VR company has been running on venture funding since 2010 — nearly 12 years. They’ve taken $3.5B in funding and have yet to release anything publicly. What’s the company’s name?
  9. Taking more than $1.6B in funding, this SoftBank-backed construction company aimed to modernize and optimise the construction process and pipeline. Instead, they ended up bankrupt and facing a host of legal action. What was the company?
  10. After taking more than $150M in investment, this online payday loan service — which advertised heavily on UK evening television — failed in 2018. Some sources attributed their failure to a bad algorithm which offered loans to people who could never pay them back. What was the company?

Round 3: Might Be Some Hardware!

  1. The term “CNC” is used to describe machines that can be programmed to do tasks like 3D printing, multi-axis routing or cutting, and many other physical-world tasks. What does “CNC” stand for?
  2. Most “CNC” hardware uses a programming language developed by MIT in the 1950s. A notable feature of this language is that almost every line starts with a capital letter which is followed by a number. What’s the name of the language?
  3. Large scale optical networks are often built by companies who then sell the installed network to telecom companies or big techs. What’s the name for optical network infrastructure that has been built but isn’t yet serving any traffic?
  4. Time-division multiplexing or TDM is a networking technology for sending many channels of data down a single optical cable. It is being overtaken by a new technology called WDM that allows for even more data transferred on the same cable. What does WDM stand for?
  5. Apple recently revealed a huge shift in their hardware architecture, enabling massive performance improvements. To do this, they abandoned conventional CPU, RAM, and other components in favour of what new type of system architecture?
  6. Recent Samsung Galaxy phones have boasted massive optical zoom magnification, well beyond any of their competitors. What marine-inspired camera technology did they use to achieve ?
  7. What is the common name for a device that measures voltage induced by quartz crystals under stress caused by changes in motion?
  8. A Yubikey is a small hardware device used in multi-factor authentication. When touched, the Yubikey outputs a one-time password based on a cryptographic algorithm. The name Yubikey is based on what word in Japanese?
  9. Cryptocurrency miner hardware is thousands of times more efficient than regular computers because they leverage ASICs. What does ASIC stand for?
  10. This month, IBM announced their Eagle quantum computer which claims to have reached a new record in the number of qubits in the processor, exceeding Google’s “Sycamore” quantum computer, which has published a 53-qubit capability. How many qubits does the IBM new hardware currently offer?

Round 4: Killed By Google

  1. Killed in 2019 after an almost ten year run, what was the name of Google’s now-dead URL shortener?
  2. Prior to their popular line of Pixel smartphones, Google had an earlier brand name for their flagship Android phones. What was it?
  3. From 2008 to 2012, Google had a service for user-written articles on any topic aimed at competing with Wikipedia. What was this service called?
  4. Despite being one of the most popular websites in Brazil for years, Google killed its only successful social network in 2014. What was it called?
  5. Killed in 2013 after 8 years, this was Google’s customisable browser home page (based on “Ajax” technology!). It allowed users to set shortcuts and a custom background image, among other things.
  6. Because what the world needed was more messaging platforms, Google created this multi-platform chat system in 2016 and merged it into Google 7. Chat in 2019. Burt the Chimney Sweep would’ve loved it. What was its name?
  7. Aimed to compete with similar offerings from Samsung and Oculus, Google created this sleep-inspired brand of VR technology in 2016 and killed it in 2019.
  8. This was Google’s attempt to compete with Spotify and other music streaming services. It lasted 9 years, ending in 2020.
  9. Currently on its final breaths, this web application framework got wrecked by React and is due to be killed in December 2021. From 2005 through to 2012 Google ran an analytics and tracking service. Though it’s been killed, much of the core tech lives on in Google Analytics. What was this earlier tracking service?

Answers

Round 1

  1. Wordpress
  2. WeWork
  3. Snyk
  4. Signal
  5. AutoDesk
  6. Stripe
  7. Tinder
  8. Monzo
  9. Texas Instruments
  10. TikTok / ByteDance

Round 2

  1. Decacorn
  2. ByteDance, SpaceX
  3. Apple
  4. $12B
  5. 55
  6. 2006
  7. Juicero
  8. Magic Leap
  9. Katerra
  10. Wonga

Round 3

  1. Computer Numerical Control
  2. G-Code
  3. Dark Fibre
  4. Wavelength Division Multiplexing
  5. System on a Chip (SoC)
  6. Periscope Zoom
  7. Accelerometer
  8. Finger
  9. Application Specific Integrated Circuit
  10. 127

Round 4

  1. goo.gl
  2. Nexus
  3. Knol
  4. Orkut
  5. iGoogle
  6. Allo
  7. Daydream
  8. Google Play Music
  9. AngularJS
  10. Urchin Tracker

Published

Dec 17th, 2021

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