Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Eric Sieg
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Almost everyone plays this as takeout which is certainly how I would take it undiscussed. However, have had a LOT of success playing this as penalty. Lots of people like to raise on garbage after 2M X (?) and penalty picks up large numbers with pretty consistent regularity.
March 27
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Jeff: Scheduling could certainly help. I personally am a lot more likely to play the Spingold because it doesn't result in missing out on any events unless I make day 3 in which case I won't care. I wonder if starting the Vanderbilt one day later is feasible. That might push the finals to Monday, but would only require a single room.
March 26
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What were some of those proposals Steve?
March 26
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I think one issue with the Vanderbilt is that entering it is at the expense of 2 other NABC+ events. You can't play the Sunday event (Imps starting 2019) and you can't play the mixed pairs. So even though it doesn't sound like much you essentially get one full day of bridge at the cost of 4 full days of bridge in other events.
March 26
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I play something similar with many partners that 2 is a limit+ raise of opener's 1st/2nd seat major opener. All the clubs here allow it (heck, most allow multi), and sectionals allow it, but D20 regionals didn't allow it in their stratified pairs.
March 24
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That was also a hypothesis I had, but it didn't appear to be valid. The mini spingolds have been going on for a while and the 10K KO is a very recent addition and hasn't ever been popular. For example, in 2001 the Spingold had 133 teams in the main draw, 72 teams in the Mini Spin, and 36 teams in the micro spin. In comparison in KC the Vanderbilt had 63 Open teams and 16 10k teams.
March 23
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@Jeff My recent(!) experience has been that all parties mentioned here have been happy to answer questions that are framed in a way as to get answers. Questions about this subject and others that I have sent to ACBL Management, some BOD members, and Jay have all been answered promptly and courteously to my satisfaction.

If Michael's actual intent was clarity, he could have acted similarly. Instead, its become quite clear to me that he wanted to stir the pot and all positions of authority have (intelligently) stayed far away.

While no ACBL management/BOD/etc posting in this thread makes a ton of sense, it would be great to see them engage more on BW. Hopefully a more welcoming environment with a focus on communication over sensationalistic accusations/trolling/etc will encourage more. Bahar and other BOD members have posted in other threads and I hope such engagement increases in frequency.
March 23
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Seattle. Spring/Summer/Fall are amazing, summers are the best I've ever seen, but the cloudy/damp winters can be pretty draining.
March 21
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@Peg where does “very cloudy winters with intermittent light rain” fall on that list of weather occurrences? :)
March 21
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I witnessed a worse sequence once:

P P 1 (1) 3NT
March 20
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Hi Kevin,

For marketing directly, my general inclination would have been going to the areas where competitive nerds already go: board and card game tournaments and conventions. Things like Pax, Gen Con, BGG Con seem like a great place to set up a learn bridge in a day or similar. Similarly, reaching out to people like Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day and seeing if they might share their insight on getting people excited about games and potentially giving it a whirl themselves would be interesting.

I also wonder about helping the 27-50 crowd feel connected with others their age. I know part of the reason I drifted away for a while was the general lack of people under 60 playing bridge. Even after I moved to Seattle - I went to the wrong club game a few times, somehow missed the younger Seattle crowd, and then stayed away from bridge for another 4 years. I've talked to others who have had the same experience. I wonder about things like a monthly 50 and under game on BBO, a 50 and under 1 session event on the Thursdays before an NABC, etc.

Anyway, just some general thoughts. I know I was bummed to not pick up the game until 25ish as I quickly aged out and went from lots of cool things like junior camp, junior events, etc to the ACBL pretending I didn't exist. Would be fun to see more things helping connect those who are younger than the norm as I think friendships and connections with people closer to our own age helps tie people more into the game.
March 20
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I'm not sure I agree with the sentiment that the ACBL isn't trying. The college stipend thing seems interesting.

The area I always felt was ignored was the 30 to 50 crowd. People in their teens and early 20s are going to have a lot going on after college with finding a job, not having money/leave/etc for bridge, finding a significant other, starting their life, etc. It seems like many people disappear at that point and some come back and some don't.

In contrast, there is a large contingent of people in their early 30s who have pushed through that time and now have free time, money, bandwidth, and interest to potentially become regular tournament players. Board games have exploded in popularity and most board gaming conventions/tournaments/etc I've been to have a large amount of 30+ people. While Magic the Gathering is played by those of all ages, the age of those who are traveling to compete in tournaments are upper 20s to late 30s.

Even in Seattle where it seems like we have a lot of younger players - a good chunk of those were people who picked the game up in their 30s.

As someone who was interested in bridge, it seemed like there was tons of support for those under 26 with the junior programs, but the instant you turned 27 you no longer existed. If you came to the game a bit later, then you just missed out.

So… while I think it is great to see the college stuff happening and would love to see the ACBL do more with those in high school and college, it'd also be great to see them expanding strategies to hook players who now have the money, time, and bandwidth to become serious players in the post college years as well.
March 19
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Hi Jan,

FYI it looks like you meant this for a closed forum but posted it publicly to everyone.

FWIW, my two cents are that having it back to back with the NABC was really nice and makes it more appealing. I generally skip USBC events but if I could condense 2 plane tickets down to 1, it would be more interesting. Maybe with Monday as a rest day.
March 19
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Always a fan of seeing the highest original seed get shown, at least for the first quarter
March 14
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Although apparently the bulletin authors didn't realize that teams who lose in the afternoon can still advance in the evening as they listed 5 upsets in the top 40 instead of 2.
March 13
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Prediction looks good, with the 34 and 39 seed falling out as well as two more in the 40s
March 12
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Hopefully this is a precursor to Live showing results from more locations. Assume BW role might eventually be brackets for the Spinderbilt, although interested if they are expanding into other things.
March 8
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I am not aware of any disclosures I could possibly make. I doubt most of the board knows I exist and I have no business relationship with the ACBL.

As for the question of why I've suddenly started posting a lot on a topic that doesn't concern me directly, I'm not sure I have a good answer for that. I made one relevant response when Nick first posted the allegations and ignored it in the well.

I think there are a few reasons that I have posted a significant amount in this thread:

1) The allegations are clearly shaded and misleading. While Nick usually colors things to make himself look good, they at least have the appearance of accuracy. Here, it felt like accuracy and truth were abandoned.
2) While I have never met Jay in person and haven't ever had a meaningful conversation with him, I have had favorable impressions of both him and the software he has built for the benefit of bridge players in the US.
3) This is the 3rd time this subject has come up and nothing meaningful has been added and there was no reason for it to be posted again. Had Michael bothered to spend any time at all other than copy pasting Nick's stuff into an email and yet another BW thread I might feel differently but nothing new has been offered. I think it is human nature to assume that where there is smoke there must be fire and for this to have been surfaced three times there must be something there, when instead it seems like there are just a couple people focused on creating a lot of smoke.
4) This was a bit of a tipping point for me and my opinion of Nick. I personally felt that he contributed significantly to the failure of the ACBLScore+ replacement, and it felt like he put significant effort into detailing all the failings of the ACBL without any musing as to what he could have or should have done differently. The first priority (in my opinion) of a consultant should be the success of their client. In this business you frequently have to deal with troublesome and uninformed clients and managing projects through that to success is a necessary skill. The (outside observer only, no special details) feeling I got was that Nick's skill here was less than sufficient and he tended to get stuck on minutiae and worrying about the exact details of a contract rather than driving a successful project forward in a way that would get outside observers excited. This was just a feeling of mine (not necessarily accurate!) but then seeing him go from painting himself as favorably as possible (a human trait) to misleading allegations against someone who HAS successfully pushed bridge technology forward was particularly galling.
March 7
Eric Sieg edited this comment March 7
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For people who are actually curious, I think the people involved are happy to answer questions where the intent is to understand as opposed to just stirring the pot. For example, for all the talk of “for profit” and “no bid contracts”, the amount paid to Bridge Finesse for all of 2017 was $0. Richard Willey similarly got satisfactory answers to his questions.

When people post allegations that are designed to be misleading and stir the pot, not engaging publicly makes plenty of sense to me.
March 6
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The possibility of 3 spade losers pushes me towards pass, although certainly have no conviction that 3 isn't better. Much easier P at imps.
March 6
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