Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Richard Willey
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Hi Bernard

Sorry for any confusion. I should have been more clear in my original post.

When I was discussing optimizing the number of boards, I as implicitly assuming trading off boards between different rounds of a multi-round event.

Lets assume I am running a five KO round event, with a total of 320 boards. How should I distribute these boards across the total set of rounds? (I'd be shocked if 5 rounds of 64 boards turned out to be optimal in anything other than an extremely tight field)
Aug. 21, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
> My (unpopular, I'm sure) solution would be to
> shorten matches to 56 boards, or even 48.

It would be relatively easy to model different types of tournament designs.

Treat each hand in a long team match as an individual sample. Determine the mean and standard deviation. Repeat for all of the matches across all the rounds of the event.

Next, determine how many boards each round should be to maximize the chance that best team wins (subject to some set of external constraints - the event can't last for more than 5 days, players can't compete for more than 10 hours a day, whatever)
Aug. 21, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
It will be interesting to see if you are correct…
Aug. 20, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
That's a curious assertion given that the C&C has repeatedly stated that Midchart legal openings are not allowed unless there is an explicit defense listed in the Defensive Database…

Then again, consistency was never their strong suit…
Aug. 19, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
All well and good, but until they manage to publish a suggested defense to the a 2D opening showing the majors or a 2H opening showing 5+ hearts and 5+ cards in another suit neither bid is legal…
Aug. 19, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I believe it is a deliberate attempt to suppress variance in the contract. Here's a simple thought experiment for you:

Let's assume that I am playing a long team match against a superior team. If we declare the same contract, from the same direction, we expect this team to beat us 90% of the time. (On occasion, we'll get lucky, the card gods will smile, and our inferior lines of play will work better)

Now, let's assume that my team decides to adopt a radically different bidding system. We're going to arrive at different contracts via very different auctions. This will significantly negate the opponent's edge in card play and defense.

I can mathematically prove that adopting INFERIOR bidding methods will improve our change of winning the match so long as the increase in the variance in the contract dominates the expected value of the bidding system.
Aug. 16, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Personally, I think that its a mistake for the C&C to tie the approval of methods to board length.

Please note: I don't disagree that the decision to allow methods should be tied to board length. However, ultimately I think that this decision should devolve to the individuals running events. If the folks running a tournament want to allow forcing pass in an event with 2 board rounds, the C&C isn't going to be able to stop them.

I think that its more than reasonable for the C&C to produce example charts that it recommends for various types of events.

Chart A is intended for “No Fear Events”.

Chart B is intended for National Level Expert events with 7 Board matched.

Chart C is intended for Open level pairs events with 2-3 board rounds

However, the C&C can and shouldn't be making mandates.
Aug. 16, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
> For those of you that play in the ACBL, you should make
> your proposals change to C&C and see if you can convince
> that body to advise the BoD to approve.

Last I heard, the C&C was overworked and wasn't accepting new methods for consideration. According to the Way Back machine, the committee hasn't approved a single new method
for at least 5 years.

Moreover, Meckstroth has directly stated that he will never allow “diabolical” systems like MOSCITO to be played North America. Why should I waste time and effort dealing the C&C so long as he's on it?

I recommend looking at the following thread for a more detailed treatment.

http://www.bridgebase.com/forums/topic/13220-hum-system-definitions/

In any case, be glad that I'm not feeling more engaged. From what I can tell, the best way to get the ACBL to act on something is to find some pretext to sue the organization.
Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Bobby Goldman was a great man. I am proud that I was able to partner him a few times. With this said and done, I think that its telling that some many of your stories involving the good deeds of the C&C committee involve someone who died 14 years ago.
Aug. 15, 2013
Richard Willey edited this comment Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I would certainly like to see considerable more latitude with respect to the set of conventions allowed in ACBL games. With this said and done, I think that critical issue is one of governance. The ACBL is institutionally incapable of providing consistent guidance to players regarding what is / is not legal. Rather than focusing on a specific set of outcomes, I think that its a lot more important to fix the underlying processes.
Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
No offense, but send the same question to four different people in Memphis and you'll get at least three “official” positions. The organization is completely incompetent in providing consistent guidance on these sorts of topics. (The classic example is whether or not a 2S preempt that promises 5+ spades and 4+ cards in either minor is legal at the GCC level)

I swear, we'd be better off outsourcing governance to the EBU and just adopt the White and Orange books.
Aug. 15, 2013
Richard Willey edited this comment Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
As a related note, I've always considered it ridiculous that transfer Walsh is completely legitimate as a response structure to a 1C opening at the Midchart level, but MOSCITO style transfer openings are so complex that the Conventions committee can find a defense that they are willing to approve.
Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I would expect that the conditional probabilities change depending on the opening bid…
Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
FWIW, I have pretty good perspective on this topic. 10 odd years ago, I attempted to get suggested defenses approved for “Frelling Two Bids” as documented on Chris Ryall’s web site. http://www.chrisryall.net/bridge/weak.two/frelling.htm The eventual outcome of these discussions was that the convention committee ruled that assumed fit methods are inherently destructive and banned them at all levels of play in ACBL events.

From my perspective, members of the conventions committee had two fundamental issues with this type of method. First, a number of individuals – most notably Chip Martel – insisted that any suggested defense needed to be based on takeout doubles in direct seat. When I pointed out that most established defenses to methods like Ekrens use penalty oriented doubles, Martel opinioned that this was too complicated for ACBL members and that the appropriate course of action was to ban the method. Shortly there-after, these methods were ruled inherently destructive.

In addition, I believe that the conventions committee has an overall goal of suppressing variance. Assumed fit methods are based on radically different principles than traditional preemptive methods. You’ll often end up in a very different contract that the rest of the field. This, in conjunction with the high frequency of the method, can significant negate the advantages of a superior card player. North American professionals don’t want to see these types of methods cross the pond. (The committee refused to approve any defenses to MOSCITO transfer openings using the same logic)

Personally, I don’t think that you will ever see any liberalization in the set of methods allowed in North America until the approval process for suggested defenses is radically changed. Currently, the only purpose that the Defense Database serves is a mechanism to neuter the midchart by banning otherwise legal methods. It has been years since the Conventions Committee has managed to approve any kind of defense. Its been the better part of a decade since they were even accepting new methods for consideration.

Personally, I’d like to see the following type of system put in place.

Here is a brief description how I think that the Defensive Database should work.

1. Players can submit any method that they want to a specially created web forum. Sixth months after the submission date, the convention becomes legal for Midchart events.

2. During the intervening time, ACBL members have plenty of time to propose / refine various defenses.

3. At the end of the sixth month process, the Conventions Committee will bless the “best” defenses.

4. If the Conventions Committee doesn’t believe that any reasonable defenses have been proposed, they can create a one time exception and delay the release of the convention by an additional six months. During this time, the Conventions Committee has the responsibility to devise and approve its own defense.

FWIW, I agree that this type of crowd-sourcing system is less than perfect, but it’s a damn sight better than the clusterfuck that we’re dealing with today. I also recognize that this system is focuses on

1. Increasing the number of conventions that players are able to use
2. Ensuring that good defenses get devised to said methods

I wouldn’t be adverse to a mechanism by which some methods can be permanently banned. However, I steadfastly maintain that said bans should be enacted by amending the Convention Charts rather than refusing to sanction defenses.

I think that its reasonable to require players who submit new conventions to do a fair amount of work when they submit a method including

1. Deal generator scripts that accurately describe the methods in question
2. Hand records showing hands that occurred during real life play.
Aug. 15, 2013
Richard Willey edited this comment Aug. 15, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Roland, if you're going to resort to penis jokes, please display a bit more panache… For example, my first name is Richard which is commonly abbreviated as “Dick”. A name like “Dick Willey” gives all sorts of opportunities for word play and you come up with something like this?
Aug. 13, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Roland: Reading comprehension is apparently not one of your strong points, so lets revisit the thread in question:

You made a very specific and wholly inaccurate claim. More specifically, you stated

>Nothing new there, David. If you are big enough (USA),
>you can power your way to the right result for your side.
>If you are small and insignificant (Israel), you stand no
>chance when you don't have your organisation (WBF) to back
>you.

>This is the crux of the matter. WBF is prepared to
>fight for USA (excellent!), less so regarding Israel
>as we have seen so clearly. Tragic.

Let’s examine the ways in which this statement in wrong… First and foremost, the Israeli bridge team was able to arrange for Visa’s to be granted to attend Bali. The USBF is in the process of having a visa granted so Migry can attend Bali. There is no difference in outcome.

Second, there is no evidence that the WBF’s behavior was any different wrt to the United States and Israel. The USBF is getting a visa issued by working directly with Indonesia. It doesn’t require the WBF to intervene. Even if the WBF failed to take action on the part of Israel, there is no difference in treatment.

Last, as people have noted before on numerous occasions, the visa issue is a red herring. Israel chose not to attend the event because they were unable to reach agreement about security concerns. The US is attending the event. Either the US doesn’t need to same security considerations or we were able to work and play nicely with the Indonesians.

The reason that people are treating your posts with disrespect is that you are continually painting a false narrative. You have been corrected on numerous occasions. You continue to obliviously barge ahead. After a while, things get old and tempers start to fray.

But, go ahead and play the victim…
You obviously revel in it…
Aug. 13, 2013
Richard Willey edited this comment Aug. 13, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
The quote from Judy Kay-Wolff was in the “Bali Affair Part 2” thread. It refers to events in 1982.
Aug. 11, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I don’t think that there is any disagreement about the basic points that Yehudit describes. Where we differ – and there is significant difference – is how to deal with this situation.

I would prefer it if Israel and Indonesia were able to sort out their difference. Sadly they aren’t. If forced to make a choice, I am more comfortable with a situation in which the Israeli team does not participate rather than denying a wide variety of countries the ability to host WBF events.

In part, I base this decision based on the fact that Israel requires special security considerations that aren’t necessary for other countries. I also consider the large number of countries that might be blocked from hosting to be significant (For example, in a previous posting Judy Wolff explained that India had to withdraw as a host because they could not provide adequate security for the Israeli team).

Last but not least, let me present a counter-factual… What if the Indonesians “phoned it in”. They gave the appearance of working with the Israeli’s, but it was all just for show. If there really are valid security concerns – and I believe that there are – then sending an Israeli team to Bali is probably a mistake.



Aug. 11, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
> I understand IBF and its supporters are merely targeting
> GABSI's lack of timely responses (which is itself not
> proven yet).

Sorry if I missed something, but I don't recall the Israeli Bridge Federation making any statement on this topic. We have a number of journalists and other interested parties making all sorts of accusations, but the individuals and organizations which are most intimately involved have been studiously quiet.
Aug. 8, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
The Australian Government instructs its citizens to exhibit a “high degree of caution” when travelling to Indonesia. This is precisely the same category that they use to describe: Brazil, China, Jamaica, Tunisia, the Philippians, … (In case you're wondering where this list of countries came from, I started working my way down through the list of countries that have hosted the Bermuda Bowl… Notice a pattern? There are a few outliers like Chile and Bermuda, but if you're going to hold an event outside Europe / The United States, there's probably going to be a travel advisory.

Aug. 8, 2013
.

Bottom Home Top