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All comments by Robert Geller
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Here in Japan the director will remove boards in a long match from play at the half-way point if either table is running late. As the boards haven't yet been played at either table people don't get too upset about this. It's rare for more than one board to be cut in, say, a 16 or 20 board segment.
Feb. 25
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Responding to Ken Rhoades:

What's “ironclad” to bridge players may not be taken as “ironclad” by the CAS or ordinary courts of law. The present system winds up there, so bridge organizations are understandingly leery of commencing a disciplinary process that may well end in embarrassing and costly acquittal on appeal.
Feb. 5
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I have no inside information, but I sincerely doubt bridge organization “would rather cover up cheating and collude with cheats.” I suspect that the trauma of losing cases in the CAS and ordinary courts of law has made clear legal and procedural issues that must be overcome in order to effectively discipline miscreants, and that until these issues are resolved bridge organizations will shy away from prosecuting all but the most ironclad cases.
Feb. 5
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Your chapter 46 gave numerical value for a parameter MF. What does MF stand for and please explain roughly (without giving away your proprietary secrets) how is it computed. Thanks.
Feb. 4
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There have been lots of cases where signaling (or more precisely, unnatural behavior patterns that are never shown by the vast majority of players) have been observed. Examples: the Italian foot-soldiers, the S-C pencils, the coughing doctors, the tray orientations, the R-S finger patterns, the horizontal vs. vertical card orientations, ….

The malefactors have mostly escaped punishment because the “signals” (if that's what they were) had to be decoded and proven illicit with specific meanings to the satisfaction of the CAS or a similar civilian court.

The obvious solution is to change the WBF code of conduct (1) so that unnatural behavior patterns such as the above are illegal per se and designated as grounds for discipline without the need for decoding; (2) for all competitors to be required to waive their right to appeal the decision of the on-site disciplinary panel as a condition of entering the tourney.

Can any legal experts comment on my suggestion in the previous paragraph?
Feb. 2
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Wouldn't it be easier in the end to volunteer for your local ACBL unit and work your way up by producing results for members from the inside?
Jan. 30
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If a bridge organization finds a player or pair guilty of partnership collusion the organization can expect to be sued by the pair that was found guilty, either in an ordinary court of law or the CAS. In either case judges who know nothing about bridge will be judging the case and it's easy for a clever lawyer to create a cloud of “reasonable doubt” (that isn't very reasonable but can fake out the judge). That being the case, bridge organizations have to do something in advance to handle the legal problems. AFAIK this hasn't been done anywhere. If I'm wrong please let me know.
Jan. 30
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For better or worse the pairs that appear to have colluded unethically, after having been found guilty, appealed and got their guilty verdicts overturned and are now legally playing (it probably enrages the tournament organizers who are forced to let them play). But, that being the case, it's unreasonable to rail at BBO. Please complain about the Sports Arbitration Court (CAS) instead.
Dec. 16, 2019
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In the long run it's probably best to adhere strictly to the published condition of contest once the event has started. Maybe changes to the CofC before an event starts are OK if players who don't like the new CofC can withdraw and get their money back. From the OP it wasn't clear whether the changes were made before or after the event started.
July 4, 2019
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Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately safe mode didn't help. I'll do a refresh when I get a chance.
Oct. 16, 2018
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When I have time I'll refresh firefox and see if that fixes the problem.
Oct. 16, 2018
Robert Geller edited this comment Oct. 16, 2018
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My only addons are bitly (a link shortener I just added after the problem occurred) and pubpeer (which let's you see comments about scientific papers on the website PubPeer when your reading the paper on the journal's site). BTW, I just rebooted my machine and the problem persists.
Oct. 16, 2018
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1. Yes

2. Yes, but… I just looked at this page. http://bridgewinners.com/article/view/counterpunch-2-z35zbvpeqe/
What happens is that for less than a second the hand diagram displays normally, but then the characters in the hand diagram almost immediately jump to being super-tiny size. That's probably happening here too.

3. No, the hand diagrams display OK on this PC with the windows browser (explorer or edge or whatever they call it these days) which I don't normally use.

4. The hand diagrams display OK on my iPhone with both Safari and Firefox.
Oct. 16, 2018
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I'm also using FF 62.0.3 and you can see from my screenshot that there's a problem. Does anyone at BW have any ideas?
Oct. 14, 2018
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Unfortunately when I try to look at Avon's hand diagrams with my default browser (Firefox, the latest version) the hands are too small to be seen. Here's a screenshot:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/cqo7l8e4jt83ehd/bridge_winners_hand.png?dl=0

Any chance this problem can be fixed?
Oct. 14, 2018
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When Sagan was discussing “extraordinary claims” he meant claims that well-established principles of science were wrong. For example, claims that things can travel faster than the speed of light, or that in addition to the well known four forces of physics (strong, weak, electromagnetic, and gravitational) there was a “fifth force.” Both have been claimed in the past 40 years based on scanty evidence and both were debunked.

In contrast, collusion by bridge partnership has, alas, been confirmed to have occurred in at least several instances. Thus the claim that a specific pair colluded is not an “extraordinary claim” in Sagan's sense.

Although a few of the alleged perpetrators are still alive no one is proposing at this late date to haul them in front of a disciplinary committee. Thus we BW members are functioning as a “historical court of public opinion.” I would suggest that the criterion for making a decision in such a case lies about halfway between “preponderance of the evidence” and “beyond a reasonable doubt.” In my opinion Avon has succeeded in meeting this standard. Others may of of course disagree. But let's not say that proof even stronger than “beyond a reasonable doubt” is required.
Oct. 5, 2018
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John Swanson's“Inside the Bermuda Bowl” has a riff on this. Many years after 1968 Swanson was faced with a similar problem, but led the ace from his five-bagger and hit pard's singleton for two ruffs, to beat the contract. At the end of the hand he celebrated his successful defense by yelling out “Pabis-Ticci!”
Sept. 27, 2018
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He wrote a nice two volume applied math textbook on boundary value problems that still is useful. Never played bridge against him…. Quite a character apparently.
June 1, 2018
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The automated warning on BW described my post as “potentially objectionable.” I can't see why. Could someone frm the BW staff please explain.
Oct. 21, 2017
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Under President Alfred Sloan, General Motors required disputes with dealers to be arbitrated. The arbitration was binding on GM, but the dealers were free to litigate after the arbitration. If ACBL arbitration was binding only on the ACBL but not the other party that would be a good solution, I think.
Oct. 21, 2017
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