Pub Quiz Help was first put together in 2001 and was WAP based only. The concept was born out of the frustration at being crap at certain types of pub quiz questions. I'm sure everyone has experienced a pub quiz where very similar questions are asked week in and week out, but you can't quite remember the exact answer - Olympic host cities is a good example.
This sort of thing was happening frequently to the pub quiz team I was a member of. It started me wondering about how useful it would be to have a kind of crib sheet to look up these sort of answers. WAP phones had just recently been released at the time, and whilst generally most WAP is crap, I thought it might be the ideal way to cheat at pub quizzes - a virtual encyclopaedia in the palm of your hand.
After searching around on the net I noticed there wasn't any WAP sites out there that could do the job. Sure you could access Google but typing in things to find them is quite tricky on a mobile phone. It would be much simpler to be able to browse through categories until you find the facts you're looking for. So I decided to make my own wapsite, initially more as a intellectual puzzle rather than a way to cheat as such.
I had no previous experience of web page production or html, let alone WAP (which was still very new) Luckily because WAP was being hyped-up so much at that time there were quite a few handy sites to get started. Wapdrive was a free WAP host I found and it was pretty straight forward to put together the first site. Wapdrive had a simple WYSIWYG online editor, and I used this in conjunction with studying the wml the editor produced to get an idea about how WAP works. Eventually hand coding the wml pages to my liking.
The Wapdrive site was fine for about a year over which I added many items of trivia concerning some of the most commonly asked pub quiz questions. But eventually Wapdrive was sold, probably because the WAP hype had finally died down when people realised it was basically rubbish. The new owners (I'm still not sure who they are) left the wapdrive site active except for the log in page! I was unable from then on to access my site at all. Obviously I tried contacting the support address listed on Wapdrive but I never received a reply!
After a while I realised Pub Quiz Help was no more, and I'd have to start again from scratch with a new host.
So this is the new site, since early 2003. After rewriting the wapsite side of things I thought I'd have a go at a web based version. This would act as a repository of easy to find information to be used for revision purposes before pub quizzes or for looking up questions that have been bugging people from the last quiz they went to. Or get this, the site could be used by people who have never even been to a pub quiz but just want to find out some useless trivia!
I know many regular pub quiz goers would be horrified at this site enabling people to cheat - some quizzes have quite large prizes. This I can understand, texting friends during quizzes has also become very popular and certainly when text message tones are heard, they are usually frowned upon. Many pub quizzes now ban the use of mobile phones during the quiz to combat this, which is fair enough.
Whilst this site was put together to allow my actual team to cheat, it wasn't really the whole reason. I was intrigued to see if it was possible. I have had a few goes at using my site during pub quizzes, but it still isn't that practical, WAP is generally too slow, by the time the answer is found the quiz master has long ago moved on. But Pub Quiz Help is still pretty cool to browse while you're on a train etc. So it still has its uses.
This site is still evolving. Whenever I get time I try and add new categories, but I'm getting short of ideas - suggestions are always welcome! So if there are any facts are trivia you think should be here drop me an email and let me know.