What's a good twelve dollar question?

I Find Karma (adam@cs.caltech.edu)
Sat, 18 Jan 97 20:29:32 PST

I've been checking out answers.com - and I'm trying to think of
a "hard" question that's worth my shelling out twelve dollars for
an answer. Anyone have any suggestions?


FYI - Tourbus on Answers.Com :

> There are lots of search engines on the Net. You type in a word or
> phrase, the computer ponders for a few seconds and then delivers the
> inevitable result: "38,400 Documents Found." Now it's up to you to
> refine your search or wade through endless links in search of the
> real answer to your question.
> But there's a new search engine now with a significant difference...
> At Answers.com, your questions are answered by humans, not computers.
> Answers.com is a unique information service that delivers answers by
> e-mail to personal, business or academic questions. In most cases,
> their "Answer Advisors" will be able to provide a citation from a
> reference text or from an Internet site.
> Sounds Cool! Is it Free?
> -------------------------
> Sort of... When you first sign up, you get $8.00 worth of questions
> answered for free. After that, you have to provide either a snail
> mail address for billing or a credit card number.
> How Much Will My Answer Cost?
> -----------------------------
> That'll be 5 cents, please. (Just kidding -- remember Lucy from the
> Peanuts cartoon?) When you arrive at Answers.com, there's a box to
> enter your question and then you have to decide whether your question
> is "easy", "medium", or "hard". The answer fee is $1.79, $5.00, or
> $11.99, respectively.
> So What's A Hard Question?
> --------------------------
> According to the Answers.com help page, a "hard question" is one that
> requires extended research or a compound answer, like this:
> - How many modems were sold in 1995?
> - What are the diameters of balls used in the following sports: golf,
> handball, billiards, tennis, lacrosse, hurling, and volley ball?
> A "medium question" requires a bit less research, or an informed opinion:
> - What is the principle behind the linear aerospike engine?
> - What is the best restaurant in Nashua, NH?
> And an "easy question" is one that requires only straightforward lookup of
> factual data in a reference book or Internet address:
> - What is the chemical formula for caffeine?
> - Where can I find an SGML viewer for Linux?
> How Does It Work?
> -----------------
> Gimme a quarter and I'll explain it. It's pretty simple -- you submit
> your question at the web site, and a real person at Answers.com sends
> the answers within 24 hours by e-mail. You can ask questions by e-mail
> (questions@answers.com) if you have opened an account first.
> You can choose expedited (5-hour) delivery for an additional $5 if you
> like. And if they don't agree with your opinion of the degree of
> difficulty, they'll ask for permission to charge a different fee or
> give you the option to cancel the request.
> The Answer Advisors use published information sources, proprietary
> databases, personal knowledge, and undoubtedly those cold impersonal
> search engines on the Internet to find an answer to your question.
> If you have other questions about Answers.com, please submit them to
> me with a certified check for $100 or send them to comments@answers.com
> and you'll get the answer for free.
> Is It Worth It?
> ---------------
> It might seem anathema to shell out money when there are free search
> engines like AltaVista that have indexed a large percentage of
> cyberspace. But let's face it -- the sum of all human knowledge is
> not found on Web pages.
> If your answer isn't available online, in a public domain database
> or you don't have time do the research yourself, it could make a lot
> of sense to spend a couple bucks -- for an answer.

Hey Rohit, how come you don't want to work for them?


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