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All comments by Wayne Burrows
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We can estimate from a hypothetical poll but we will need to make some assumptions. Say the movements are Mitchell-like with half the pairs EW and half NS for each session. Assume two sessions. Assume at least one 9-bagger in each session (otherwise we would be discussing 3 9-baggers in 25 boards). Assume some randomish mixing of the pairs from session to session. Assume 9-baggers in the other direction.

Then about 1/4 of the pairs sat the same way as you.

Assume say 75% of pairs sit in the same seats (always north etc) and 25% swap between north and south, and east and west where appropriate.

That gives us a ball park of 3/16 in our poll will have had 3 9-card suits.
Jan. 1, 2016
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I had this email passed on to me:

“Kathie Miller just phoned me. Her daughter, our friend, Samantha Nystrom passed away this morning. Kathie asked that no flowers be sent, instead make a donation in Sam's name to a charity of your choice. She asked me to spread the word so please tell the people this e-mail is not going to reach.

She has spoken to Ken; there is going to be a celebration of life at the club at a future date. Kathie has asked that the hugs of commiseration and words of condolence be restrained as she would have a hard time dealing with it. Sam is an organ donor; Kathie is struggling with that now but I suggested she may have a different view in the fullness of time. She is with her son Cameron, who has been a tower of strength for her, and they expect to return on Tuesday, with Sam's body to follow. I asked about the costs, which I believe can be large in this situation, and she was unsure. I suggested that we, the bridge community, could be of assistance in that regard, and I hope it is something we can all think about.

I will see you all at the Celebration of Life”

and previously yesterday this message:

“she is in hospital, prognosis is not good.

Drs dont think she will regain consciousness, and if she does, there will have been significant damage.

She went to take a nap on thursday afternoon. Andrew went to wake her at 5 and she was blue. Managed to resesutate (spelling?) Her to get a pulse, but she crashed in ambulance. She was on life support and they were icing her head (swelling from lack of oxygen). Today at 4pm she started to breathe on her own so they took her off vent and had plans to start to warm her head. But i have not received an update since then.

That was from Dec 18/19. Yesterday Susie said she saw Samantha in hospital and she had a feeding tube (still unconscious)”

I met Samantha at a Regional in Surrey, BC in November 2009. She wasn't playing for some reason that I don't recall. She kibitzed me for a couple of sessions and I had a few short conversations with her in between sessions. We didn't keep in close contact but she left a very good impression in me and I often had fond memories of her when I saw her online on BBO or facebook.

RIP I will miss you Samantha.
Dec. 21, 2015
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I think at least part of the confusion with “natural meaning” comes because the author is using “natural” in its natural sense whereas perhaps subsequently others use “natural” in the sense defined by the ACBL or other RA.

Not sure I haven't bothered to check but possibly Norman Squire in Natural Bidding described fourth suit forcing as “natural”. There may not have been a regulatory definition of “natural” at that time.
Dec. 10, 2015
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Why not simply say “please explain the auction?” without any reference to any particular denomination?
Dec. 9, 2015
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The disadvantage perhaps is that there is one team always in the three-way match.
Dec. 4, 2015
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This pattern will work

1 10
2 9
3 8
4 7
5 6

with 5 v 6 v 11 in a three way match.

On the next round swap the two pairs of teams at the top on the right (or left) to get (and continue the same three way match):

1 9
2 10
3 7
4 8
5 6

Then for round three each team moves two places forward (or back) to give:

9 8
10 7
1 6
2 5
3 4 11

Then again swap on the right in pairs. Then move two places again. Repeat so there are five pairs of rounds to give 10 rounds in total.
Dec. 4, 2015
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In an ideal world the dealing program algorithm would be available for scrutiny so that we would know that 1 was not the case. It should be possible to do this without allowing anyone to gain an advantage from simply knowing the algorithm.
Nov. 22, 2015
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In my view the lower the standard of proof the lower the penalties that can be fairly applied.

If you ban someone for life based on a weak standard of proof that does not seem at all fair.

If you ban them for two weeks that is not so unfair on the players but might be unfair on the opponents.

I think it is non-trivial to get this balancing act right. However I would not want life time bans unless the standard of proof was extremely high.
Nov. 12, 2015
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If you are going to convict on something as weak as preponderance of evidence then I do not think you can justify harsh penalties.
Nov. 9, 2015
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Fair enough i intended the comment about methods to deflect away from the use of Gerber and rather concentrate on the judgement to bid 7NT. I see I needed to be more explicit.
Nov. 4, 2015
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The reasons as you call them were intended to be indicative rather than definitive, to give a feel for the level of ‘gamble’ etc.
Nov. 4, 2015
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Yes I am forcing 4 on you. Only because that is what happened at the table. Then I am just checking my judgement of the 7NT bid.
Nov. 4, 2015
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What is the difference between jumping in spades and doubling and bidding spades?
Oct. 30, 2015
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Last I heard the ball trajectories in cricket were not predictive based on the laws of physics but some sort of spline extrapolation based on the position that the ball had been at previously. If so it may not be as accurate as it is presented.
Oct. 27, 2015
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Disclaimer: I am not an ACBL member although I have been one in the past and maybe one sometime in the future.

The length of ban needs to tied to the level of proof required. The higher the standard of proof the more you can justify a harsh penalty or perhaps rather the lower the standard of proof the less you can justify a harsh penalty.

If the standard is balance of probabilities which it is in many civil matters in many jurisdictions then a harsh penalty is not justified as then a significant number of innocent parties could be treated harshly.

If the standard is beyond reasonable doubt then our criminal courts still prove that there is a chance that innocent people will be convicted and so extreme penalties should probably be avoided.

It maybe possible to quantify some other standard of proof.

Any regulation or rule that specifies expected or typical or recommended penalties in my opinion needs also to specify explicitly the standard of proof required.
Oct. 22, 2015
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I suspect it is more likely that north has tolerance for diamonds and decent spades.

Maybe I am wrong but that is certainly how I think I would act at the table. If I had little tolerance for diamonds I would be trying to improve the contract and with tolerance for diamonds I would be happier passing 2.
Oct. 22, 2015
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1. I am not convinced we know the same thing. Although I am still not convinced what any UI suggests or might demonstrably suggest.

2. It seems very unlikely that AI and UI will ever be identical in this sort of situation.

3. When there is AI and UI then you need to consider what the UI suggests and what the logical alternatives are. I think the AI will influence the logical alternatives but not what is suggested by the UI. Therefore you may still be constrained by the UI even when the AI and UI are close to the same meaning.
Oct. 22, 2015
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I don't think this is what the laws say. If there is UI then you have to carefully avoid using it to your advantage.
Oct. 22, 2015
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It adds something if there are hands where they would not consider on the previous round but bid 2 now.

Its not clear to me that there are no such hands.

I could easily imagine hands were I was happy playing 2 and would pass in tempo but now want to offer 2 on the way to 3 for example.
Oct. 22, 2015
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It may not be possible. However if you cannot guarantee that then I think it is too harsh to impose penalties for requesting a ruling that is turned down.
Oct. 14, 2015
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