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All comments by David Yates
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Thank you for the info, Ray.
34 minutes ago
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East was playing partner to have diamond card plus Q. This would be 100% at teams because that is what you need partner to hold for a set. I think it was probably overly optimistic at MP. But perhaps E thought S did not have a clear route for 12 given the duck.

West, by not thinking and just returning a club, was playing E for QJx and AQ-S in addition Q implied by the deuce shift. (Since not other layout matters.) But if E actually held all that for 2, W needed to duck the diamond to set anyway. (Not sure why he thought he needed to win anyway.)

East was actually playing for a real layout - even if unlikely. West was pulling cards and not playing for anything.

Ergo, all West - even if not cashing A was a bit risky.
2 hours ago
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(sigh)
3 hours ago
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Dear Ray,

I need an another option: “huh?”

My training in the law is more or less like Mr Bumble's – I know what makes sense. I am wondering how a required agreement to binding arbitration is enforceable. In Tom Brady vs. Ego & Bad/Sci (not a Pats or Brady fan), I can understand the court upholding Goodell's kangaroo process where the Lord High Executioner is also the appellate. The Player's Association agreed to that during negotiations – so it was a voluntary concession.

The ACBL will not permit non-members to enter a National event. The ACBL makes membership a precondition for entry and then insists on a concession to binding arbitration as a precondition to that membership. How is this different than a pharmaceutical company insisting on a signed arbitration agreement before they will sell you their product? Given all the “bad drug” ads on TV trolling for clients, I would have thought the drug companies would have gone that way a long time ago if it were legal.

Please enlighten me. I really hate that I must be a member just to play in a NABC, so my current membership is not voluntary.

Signed,

Under Duress
3 hours ago
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Another R.A. (add Austria to the list) with more sensible rules than ours.

I like the rule as it prevents nefarious collusion as well as teams from leaving after the second round. (Not the team you think).

Your team just got blitzed in Rd1 and now you get paired against Mark Lair & Co in Rd2 who have the same zero.
Jan. 18
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One reason Precision was popular in the ‘70s because it was one of the few alternatives that was legal in ACBLand. That and with a few tweaks - change the NT range, make 2 6+, drop the silly asking bids - and it is an easy, natural effective system. The other reason is wins up to the finals by Taiwan in the BB really put the system on the map.

The reason one sees less of Precision these days is that (I am guestimating) 80% of today’s smaller fields in ACBL tourneys took up bridge in the last 25 years. The ACBL teaches everyone 2/1 these days. (Which did not really exist in the 70s, mostly Eastern or Western Sci.) Today's players have enough problems learning & mastering 2/1 systems. In the '70s, people who went to play in the ACBL were already bridge players. Picking up a new system was no big deal. Today, most of the ACBL world is just learning.

(Learning the wrong system, but that is another matter.)

It has really nothing to do with effectiveness. Four of the six pairs on the (generally accepted) two top USA teams play Precision. Other top players such as Sontag, Berk, Grue, Cheek, Cohen regularly play Precision.

Precision (& variants) has disappeared from the lower rank and file, but it is still common in expert play.
Jan. 18
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I agree that the rule is correct for the reasons that you stated. However, despite making all sorts of other mistakes, I never sat in the wrong direction in a team match, so I never even thought about it until the Denver Episode.

It does seem odd given the 60-40 vote so far that a group of players would collectively know no more than I.

Edit/Add: Actually, I just noticed that so far almost 1/4 abstained on a did know/did not know question. Hard to imagine what option ‘C’ would be, so BW needs to change “abstain” in this case to “I am taking the 5th”.
Jan. 18
David Yates edited this comment Jan. 18
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Polling has increasingly become a problem given today's propensity to replace thinking with a poll result.

The original purpose of “peer group” in the language was to spare good players from TDs who were not. In MI/UI cases the crux is whether that MI/UI “could have” been a factor. In order to make such a determine, one needs to understand the bridge logic of the situation and the problem at hand.

Polling can give someone an idea of how a player would think through the problem absent the MI/UI and this can assist with the decision. Other than that, reliance on the poll result without understanding its limitations is entirely foolish. It leads to TD rulings that the UK is going to stay in the EU and Hillary is President.
Jan. 17
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If X denies a strong stopper (or perhaps any, I suppose) then you need a rebid to show a hand with a stopper but anti-positional. This right-sides NT when opener is something like Qx and responder is Kxx or Axx. Or even Kx with opener opposite Qxx.

So that would be 3

2NT says I can play NT, promises extras, 4H or partial spade stop

3NT is < 4H, with min.

Suits would be natural-ish, absent any sort of transfer agreement – which would be useful. But if this is the first time it ever came up, it seems like memory overhead for little gain and potential disaster if either partner forgets 3 years from now.
Jan. 17
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David, I don't know if you have played in the USA, but if you ever got a chance to play bridge in Elbonia, its pretty much like here.
Jan. 17
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It is quite possible that had DeepMind attempted to validate its approach to AI by learning bridge by watching what human players do, the server would have suffered a meltdown.

I would be curious to know how DeepMind controls - or even tries to control - GIGO in the learning process. How one presents data and information to a human always influences initial fundamental principles and thus the learning curve.

Computers may have a big advantage in that they have a ‘recompute’ button or command; something many humans seem to lack.
Jan. 15
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Criticize the bidding, £20 a hundred:

More empirical evidence that money and brains is only loosely correlated at best.
Jan. 15
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Bridge in the Sixth Dimension.
Jan. 10
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Not because of this board. It was probably an average.
Jan. 6
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All that stuff happened because the T-100 working as an automated Uber driver received an IM: “go get Sarah Conner”.
Jan. 6
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Forget like, I love this. Might have been even funnier if East had four spades.

One at the club, RHO opened a minor, I overcalled 1NT and it went float. LHO was on lead with:

AKQ10xx / xxx / xx / xx

and led the ten of spades. He hit his partner with the jack and sadly one other card. There is some non-zero chance that my human opponent might have programmed this robot.
Jan. 6
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I think both, eventually. . .
Jan. 5
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Apathy is a problem when it prevents change.
Jan. 4
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Naturally, they do.

60 years ago, a hand such as:

KJ10x / AKJx / Jxx / xx

Would have been opened 1 by the vast majority of USA players.

The percentage would be close to zero today.

If this game survives to another generation, hopefully those players will simply marvel at how silly we were with our regulations and attitudes about the game. I doubt they will perpetuate regulations such as this.
Jan. 3
David Yates edited this comment Jan. 3
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Yes, that was the start times when we were young and avoided work.
Jan. 3
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