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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

‘Jeopardy Villain’ Continues His Winning Streak

Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek and contestant Arthur Chu pose for a photo. (Facebook)

Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek and contestant Arthur Chu pose for a photo. (Facebook)

Jeopardy! champ Arthur Chu, 30, continued his winning streak on the game show last night, adding another $20,800 to his previous winnings of $102,800.

Chu uses game theory to make his bets, and has earned him the ire of Jeopardy! fans, who object to his strategy of jumping around the game board, instead of tearing through one topic at a time.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson interviewed Chu earlier this month, and Chu explained how he game up with his unusual strategy:

“All I had to do was literally Google ‘Jeopardy strategy’ and see what came up. That’s how I discovered the theory of how you can leverage your advantages in Jeopardy!, even if you’re not necessarily the person who knows the most trivia, or if you’re about evenly matched with your opponents, how can you increase your chance of winning.”

Transcript

JEREMY HOBSON, HOST:

Well, one more note, Meghna, from the HERE AND NOW game show desk. Guess who was back on "Jeopardy!" last night.

(SOUNDBITE OF SHOW, "JEOPARDY!")

ALEX TREBEK, HOST:

Mongrel dogs, informally. Arthur.

ARTHUR CHU: What is mutts?

TREBEK: Mutts. Yes.

CHU: Group names of animals, a thousand.

TREBEK: A group of these tot-toting avians get together as a mustering. Arthur?

CHU: What are storks?

TREBEK: That's it. And that takes you to $2,600.

HOBSON: That is Arthur Chu who made the headlines a few weeks back when he first appeared on "Jeopardy!" because he's using game theory to win. He joined us on HERE AND NOW and told us what he's doing.

CHU: I told myself, you know, if the game is close, you bet big. You know, if the game is not close, you bet small. I made a little set of like simple rules in my head, rules of thumb. And as long as I'm following those rules, the game part of the game is almost on automatic, and you can see that, that I play really fast. And that means because I'm not using that part of my brain to think about strategy 'cause I've already planned my strategy. I can use it all for trying to get the questions right.

HOBSON: Just a little slice of our extensive interview with Arthur Chu, the most popular item on our website right now. You can listen to the whole thing at hereandnow.org. This is HERE AND NOW.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.


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Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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