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All comments by Alan Rickayzen
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Good luck at the D7 :)

For those not sure of how crowd-funding works or how to support Patty here's a short video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9U4D_Ei1WA

(Patty - this could be easily adapted for your project since it's too late for mine now)
May 5, 2018
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Patty - great idea!
My own Kickstarter bridge project (https://www.bit.ly/T-Y-P ) succeeded but it's tough. If you want tips from me please get in touch.
I've backed you so you can contact me.
May 5, 2018
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I just read that another piece of software (Libratus) had beaten experts at another strain of poker.
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-38812530
Jan. 31, 2017
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That's a very good point Veronique. When AI can't give an explanation you can't do a root-cause-analysis when things go wrong - a cornerstone of the LEAN approach in modern business.
Jan. 23, 2017
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Not worried either. I'd welcome this and be really curious new tactics and bidding schemes that evolved from it.
Jan. 15, 2017
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Thanks for the insight, Edward (and I was about to plump for “yes”). I'd seen the Starcraft II initiative but thought it was only action-focused.h

I still believe Bridge could be of interest. Like Yu, I'd been fascinated by the communications - how to communicate precisely with limited vocabulary, when it's important to keep mum, how to bluff/mislead….. These being important aspects of interpreting business or political communications.

If that's already covered by Starcraft II then I'm really curious of that result.
Jan. 15, 2017
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Thanks for the corrections Qucheng. Like my bidding, my description was muddled. I was assuming it (AlphaGo? DeepMind Labs?) learns from the bbo archives, not screen or youtube videos. But when it plays I was hoping it could play in in a pixel-based way since bbo probably doesn't support the APIs it needs.

Anyway thanks for contributing - and that second link is really encouraging.
Jan. 13, 2017
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Apologies Kit, I have updated the question to explain what DeepMind does. It is not a bridge program. But there is nothing stopping it from teaching itself to play bridge.

What @Jordan describes is one interesting aspect of the challenge. Could it decipher a bidding system from looking at millions of boards, particularly as they'll use different systems with different expertise? But BBO robots will be consistent so it may stand a chance of deciphering the conventions, but then applying them itself and perhaps inventing new conventions as part of its evolution.
Jan. 13, 2017
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@Stefan - I'm hoping that wouldn't be needed.

DeepMind would need to watch the screen (or digest the bbo archives) and learn

a) that there are a limited number of cards in pack (easy)
b) how the scoring works (easy)
c) that it is playing with a partner (trickyish)
d) to interpret the communications scheme with the partner while bidding and playing (very difficult)
e) strategies to bid and play best (very difficult)
f) to develop it's own communications scheme with the partner while bidding and playing (very difficult)

Example: http://www.theverge.com/2016/6/9/11893002/google-ai-deepmind-atari-montezumas-revenge
Jan. 13, 2017
Alan Rickayzen edited this comment Jan. 13, 2017
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I sort of agree (having “Jack” at home). But the BBO robots are available on the Web, and that would make it easier for the DeepMind to access. My understanding is that DeepMind can now play video games like brickmaster without being taught the rules. So it's more a question of whether it can learn bridge at all just by watching.
Jan. 13, 2017
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1. Identify games where chance is an element, but skills prevail.
In some games the order of play is determined by chance, such as by tossing a coin. Baseball, falls into this category and is tolerated by colleges. Skiing perhaps, too, since all slopes are different.

2. Explain how bridge falls into that category.
This is probably easiest to explain using Swiss matches because both teams play with absolutely identical card distributions.
Oct. 24, 2016
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Congratulations Jason! And a lovely name, too :)
April 3, 2016
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Many thanks for your support Jason. I wish I could have summarized it as well as you have done.
Just for clarity though, there is no contribution made to Kickstarter. Kickstarter is the enabler for many fine projects (e.g. the Ai Weiwei trees in London) but it does so by being a platform to ensure the honesty of the projects by “parking” the commitment (“Treuhand” in German). I pay the fees for this only if the project succeeds.

And please don't express support by pledging more than is necessary. Spread the word instead because time is running out.

March 9, 2016
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quits - I didn't take your comment as negative in any way.
March 6, 2016
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Many thanks for supporting this, Roland.
There are 143 live art projects on Kickstarter right now, and this bridge project is #3 in terms of funding!

In fact it is just one backer short of doubling the goal set for 4 weeks, in the very first week alone. All credit to Martin's painting and Roland and the other backers' support.

As Ian noticed, I am not talented when it comes to advertising, but if the project does defy the critics and make (positive) waves for the bridge community, I'd be really grateful to anyone who can suggest where to send a press-release to fly the flag for bridge.

March 6, 2016
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Well I think this is really cool. I've posted the link wherever I can.
Feb. 5, 2016
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I really appreciated your commentary at Chennai, which I could follow as a beginner. So despite all the hurdles you listed.. you did a terrific job :)
Dec. 2, 2015
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Exactly. The selection and training techniques have improved. But the soccer youth-pyramid has not broadened.

1. Big pyramid => Lots of people learning and having fun.
2. Tune the training+selection processes => better results at the top.

You can have your cake and eat it. But either 1) or 2) alone counts as success IMHO.

(nice article Daniel)
Dec. 1, 2015
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I can remember as a bambini soccer trainer getting instructions (passed down through the heirarchies from Franz Beckenbauer) that we had to engage more with the kids to get them keener because the national squad was losing too often.

We, the trainers, couldn't stop laughing, because a) none of us were German and had any motivation for a better German team and b) none of our players would be anywhere near good enough to make the national squad, ever!

The motivation for the trainers and kids was to learn how to play soccer, and enjoy it, and to enjoy learning.

If the Beckenbauers (or Zias) want more success at the top they'll discover players because they recognize skill and potential, and that is irrespective of the breadth of the base of the pyramid.

Kudus to the Dutch efforts.
Dec. 1, 2015
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Like my contracts, there's a thousand and one ways to not succeed ;) Maybe it is currently paused for another reason.

But from what you say, Ant, it sounds worth looking out for.
Nov. 30, 2015
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