Any Questions?

Friday at 6:25 p.m. on Northeast Report Late Edition
  • Hosted by Ian Pickus
  • Local Host Mike Nothnagel and Ian Pickus

Last week's challenge: Start with the letters MSNBC. Add four vowels and you can spell a two-word phrase (five letters, four letters) for something that makes a loud noise. What is it?

Answer: If you add an I and three Os, you can spell SONIC BOOM.

THIS WEEK'S CATEGORY: ROBOTS

On-air questions: On July 22, 2015, the annual RoboCup competition came to a close. Held every year since 1997, the annual robotics competition is officially titled "Robot Soccer World Cup", and its mission statement is "By the middle of the 21st century, a team of fully autonomous humanoid robot soccer players shall win a soccer game, complying with the official rules of FIFA, against the winner of the most recent World Cup." This week, we welcome our new robot overlords as we have a quiz about robots.

1. Bender, the Robot Devil, Calculon, and the Reverend Lionel Preacherbot are among the many robots on the animated series Futurama, created by which man, also behind the creation of another long-running popular animated series?
2. In 2009, film critic Peter Travers said, "If there was ever a time where an animated feature deserved to be nominated for Best Picture, it's" what Pixar film, which tells the story of a robot tasked with cleaning up trash on an abandoned Earth?
3. The dance known as the robot – in which the dancer moves their arms and legs in a, well, robotic fashion – first gained widespread fame when the lead singer of which singing group did the robot during a performance of the group's 1974 hit song "Dancing Machine" on an episode of Soul Train?
4.  "A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm"; "A robot must obey orders given it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law"; and "A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law" are the Three Laws of Robotics, which appear in a book of short stories titled I, Robot, written by what prolific science-fiction author?
5. Introduced in September of 2002, what is the name of the robotic vacuum cleaner manufactured by the iRobot company, whose later models have included an infrared sensor to help it avoid obstacles, wi-fi connectivity, and a smartphone app?

Extra credit

1. "Our democracy has been hacked" is a slogan that appears in promotional materials for what USA series starring Rami Malek and Christian Slater?
2. "Robot Parade" is a track on the 2002 children's album No! by what band, which won a Grammy award in 2009 for its children's album Here Come the 123s?

This week's challenge
Start with the title of the 1982 film BLADE RUNNER. Change one letter to a G and you can spell the two-word name of something that isn't true, but a lot of people think is. What is it?

About Any Questions?

WAMC's Friday quiz segment, Any Questions?, puts news director Ian Pickus in the hot seat, as he and listeners field questions from resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel. Nothnagel is Associate Professor of mathematics at The Culinary Institute of America, and a crossword constructor for the New York Times and Games Magazine, among other venues. Often, Mike and Ian switch seats or feature guest answerers, such as Will Shortz, Liane Hansen, John Flansburgh and Mike Doughty.

Any Questions? airs Friday during Northeast Report Late Edition on WAMC. 

Any Questions? #76

Feb 8, 2013

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel have a royal time on a show about queens.

Any Questions? #75

Feb 1, 2013

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch seats for a quiz about the silver screen.

Mike Nothnagel

WAMC's resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel normally spends his Fridays asking questions on the quiz segment Any Questions?, heard during Northeast Report around 6:25 p.m. This week, he's pulling double duty.

Nothnagel recently recorded a guest appearance on the NPR program Ask Me Another after qualifying on a practice quiz. He competed in a word game on the actual show, taped in Brooklyn.

Any Questions? #74

Jan 25, 2013

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel take a trip across the pond for a quiz about Scotland.

Any Questions? #73

Jan 18, 2013

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel rally for a for a quiz about protests.

Any Questions? #72

Jan 11, 2013

Hosted by WAMC’s Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel, this week’s Any Questions? focuses on the initials “DH.”

Any Questions? #71

Jan 4, 2013

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are thrilled to welcome a special guest player, John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants.

Any Questions? #70

Dec 28, 2012

With 2012 coming to a close, it's time for Ian and Mike to clear the shelves of old trivia.

Any Questions? #69

Dec 21, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel undertake what might well be their very last show.

Last week's challenge
Think of an eight-letter word beginning with T that names a part of an airport. Change one letter to an O to spell the name of a foreign city. What is the word and what is the city?
Answer: The word is TERMINAL. If you change the T to an O, you can spell MONTREAL.

Any Questions? #68

Dec 14, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel take to the friendly skies with a quiz about airplanes.

Any Questions? #67

Dec 7, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel take a trip to the first state, Delaware.

Any Questions? #66

Nov 30, 2012

Perhaps paving the way for their own greatest hits release, WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel reflect this week on landmark albums.

Any Questions? #65

Nov 26, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel embark on a show about Doctor "Who."

Any Questions? #64

Nov 16, 2012

WAMC’s Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch seats on this week’s Any Questions, which focuses on UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Any Questions? #63

Nov 9, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel mark the end of campaign season with a show about vice presidents.

Any Questions? #62

Nov 2, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel do their best to live up to their category this week: famous radio broadcasts.

Last week's challenge
Think of a seven-letter word beginning with A that names a part of the human body. Switch the first two letters and you'll get a two-word phrase that names something a superstitious person doesn't like. What is the body part and what is the thing?
Answer: The body part is the ABDOMEN, and the thing is a BAD OMEN.

Any Questions? #61

Oct 26, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel focus on human anatomy on this week's show.

Any Questions? #60

Oct 19, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel try some sleight of hand with a show about magic.

Any Questions? #59

Oct 12, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel take a trip to the great white way.

Last week's challenge

Any Questions? #58

Oct 5, 2012
Touchstone Pictures

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel embark on a trivial pursuit of happiness with a Before and After show.

Last week's challenge
Think of two five-letter synonyms for “stupid person.” One starts with D, and the other starts with I. Drop one letter, and you can rearrange the remaining nine letters to spell a process that a stupid person probably isn't very good at. What are the synonyms and what is the process?

Any Questions #57

Sep 28, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel finally cut to the heart of their show: this week's quiz is all about stupid questions.

Any Questions #56

Sep 21, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch sides this week for a quiz about historical figures (and quasi-historical figures) who also switched sides.

Last week's challenge: Start with the phrase SUPREME COURT. Rearrange these 12 letters to spell a two-word phrase (eight letters in the first word, four letters in the second) that names someone who's technologically savvy. Who is it?

Answer: The person is a COMPUTER USER.

Any Questions #55

Sep 14, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel don their finest black robes for a show about famous court cases.

Any Questions #54

Sep 7, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel kick off season two of the little quiz program that could.

Any Questions #53

Aug 31, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel wrap up the first season of the show with a segment all about The Beatles.

Any Questions #52

Aug 24, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel have the munchies for purely wholesome reasons.

Any Questions #51

Aug 17, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are all about the Brians this week.

Last week's challenge
Gold is the traditional gift for a 50th anniversary, so here's a challenge inspired by that: Think of a 5-letter word beginning with P that describes something flat. Add AU (as in the chemical symbol for gold) to the end of this word, and you'll get another word that describes something flat. What are the words?

Any Questions #50

Aug 10, 2012

Time flies when you're having trivia: WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel mark their 50th show.

Last week's challenge
Start with the name of the explorer LEIF ERICSON. Change one letter to a D, then rearrange the result to spell a two-word phrase (five letters in the first word, six letters in the second) that names a person you might take a road trip with. Who is it?
Answer: If you change an I to a D, you can spell CLOSE FRIEND.

Any Questions #49

Aug 3, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel boldly go where no quiz segments have gone before: to the realm of exploration.

Last week's challenge
Start with the name ANSEL ADAMS. Add a letter, then rearrange the letters to spell the names of three things you might see in a photograph of a beach.
Answer: If you add a P, you can spell PALM, SAND, and SEA.

Any Questions #48

Jul 27, 2012

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel zoom in for a show about famous photos.

Last week's challenge
Think of two words that each name a unit of volume (one has six letters, the other has four). Change one letter to an R, then rearrange the result to name things that have lots of measurements on them. What are the units and what are the things?

Answer: The units are BUSHEL and PINT. If you change the H to an R, you can rearrange the letters to spell BLUEPRINTS.

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