Question answering is a core problem in natural language processing: given a question, provide the entity that it is asking about. When top humans compete in this task, they answer questions incrementally; i.e., players can interrupt the questions to show they know the subject better than their slower competitors. This formalism is called “quiz bowl“ and was the subject of the NIPS 2015 best demonstration.

This year, competitors can submit their own system to compete in a quiz bowl competition between computers and humans. Entrants create systems that receive questions one word at a time and decide when to answer. This then provides a framework for the system to compete against a top human team of quiz bowl players in a final game that will be part of NIPS 2017.

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We gratefully acknowledge the support of a Amazon AWS research grant to support the competition's backend infrastructure.