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All comments by Bud Hinckley
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If I was using screens, partner opened 1, not a strong 2 red vs. white with the auction given, my RHO doubled 6, and I'm holding the club ace, what is the chance that partner is going to make 6 (or even hold it to down 1) compared to the chance that partner forgot that 2 showed diamonds? I think calling a pass of 6 doubled a logical alternative might be a bit of a stretch.
Dec. 6, 2012
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Nice job, Yuan! I admit I was surprised you were eligible for that event considering some discussions we had. Being in South Bend not far from Chicago, perhaps we might arrange a game some time in the future!
Nov. 27, 2012
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I never had a phone with me. Although I suspect there were plenty that had a cell phone, but that was turned off to ensure there was no chance of it making any noise, and that it was carried solely for convenience immediately following a session.

I assume that the new policy will emphasize that the allowance is only to have a turned off phone in your pocket for convenience FOLLOWING a session, and that you aren't to ever be seen with a cellphone outside your pocket/purse.
Nov. 27, 2012
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I didn't think that was the case. But with my teammates playing East-West two sections away from me, I'm not sure what their movement was compared to the boards.
Nov. 26, 2012
Bud Hinckley edited this comment Nov. 26, 2012
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How do I do a detailed analysis of a group of PBN files?

I would like to take a group of PBN files (for example, one month of them used at my local club), and do a detailed (not just balanced hand, 7+ card suits, number of singletons/doubletons) analysis of all the hands.

What is the best method (and software) to use to accomplish this?

And if needed, how do you most easily combine a few dozen PBN files into a single large PBN file?

Nov. 11, 2012
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Some interesting statistics from Richard Pavlicek's excellent website and the ACBL Encyclopedia of Bridge:

Distributional Percentages for a Single Bridge Hand

Balanced (4333, 4432, or 5332) 47.604%
1 singleton 29.558%
At least 1 singleton 30.791%
1 void 5.097%
At least 1 void 5.107%
At least 1 singleton or void 35.661%
7+ card suit 4.032%
Nov. 9, 2012
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In very simplistic terms, “Big Deal” written by Hans Van Staveren a dozen years ago uses a SINGLE random number between 1 and 53,644,737,765,488,792,839,237,440,000 (the number of ways four bridge hands can be dealt). Each possible random number in that range is associated to an exact distribution of the 52 cards in the four hands, thereby constituting the hands for one board.

53,644,737,765,488,792,839,237,440,000 is the 24 character hexadecimal number

AD55E315634DDA658BF49200

or the 96 bit binary number

101011010101010111100011000101010110001101001101110110100110010110001011111101001001001000000000

which is why you need at least 96 bits if a single random number is to represent a bridge hand with all possible bridge hands being possibly chosen.

The key is to make that random number truly “random”.

Other dealing programs will possibly use thousands of random numbers to “shuffle” the cards in some way many times before “dealing” them, or a random number can be assigned to every card and then the cards placed in random order to constitute their “shuffle”, or a card can be randomly chosen to be dealt to a specific hand and that is repeated for each hand in order until the “deck” is exhausted.
Nov. 8, 2012
Bud Hinckley edited this comment Dec. 16, 2012
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Our club is presently using BridgeComposer to create the hands with the Dealer4 software itself as a backup method. Since the Big Deal program (recently revised by Hans Van Staveren two months ago), presumably has as good or better algorithms, even though it is a DOS type program that provides a very simple PBN file, I would tend to use that if I was generating the hands, but nobody else in our club knows about Big Deal.

Any other good dealing programs out there, especially if they are easy to use to make random hands?
Nov. 8, 2012
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I assume I will be able to combine all of the PBN files into one large file and check the statistics of the large file.
Nov. 8, 2012
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There are many hands where you won't want 3M to be forcing. Perhaps mildly invitational and encouraging if responder's hand looks moderately reasonable opposite a good six of seven card major held by opener. But I'm not convinced that playing 3M as absolutely forcing is a good idea.

In my partnerships, 3M is the only bid that isn't game forcing.
Oct. 28, 2012
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I made several comments on possible responses at this website on the subject:

http://justinlall.com/2011/09/07/puppet-stayman-after-a-1n-opener/
Oct. 13, 2012
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I should have added that not only is declarer going to have only one spade, but he isn't going to be missing the A.
Oct. 7, 2012
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Give count in clubs just as you would if you were giving count in spades. In this case, holding a doubleton club, partner of opening leader plays a high spade spot card to show an even number of clubs (or his lowest spade if playing upside down signals).

It is revealed declarer has one club and a club can be led at trick 2, forcing declare to decide between the two lines of play.
Oct. 7, 2012
Bud Hinckley edited this comment Oct. 7, 2012
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Assuming declarer is not going to bid 6 with two quick spade losers, I still contend on this hand that the partner of opening leader should signal count of his CLUBS on the opening lead, since opening leader will want to lead a club if declarer has a stiff club.
Oct. 5, 2012
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You have two lines of play.

1. Immediately draw trumps and hope the diamond jack will fall (3-3 split, or doubleton or singleton jack)

2. Try to cash a second club to pitch your small diamond. If clubs are 2-2, you succeed. If clubs are 3-1 with the singleton on your left, you go down when LHO ruffs. If a singleton club is on your right, he ruffs and you overruff and you draw trumps and again hope for 3-3 diamonds or the diamond jack to be singleton or doubleton.

4-0 4.8%
3-1 24.9% 27.5%
2-2 40.7% 45.0%
1-3 24.9% 27.5%
0-4 4.8%

Since the 4-0 splits are eliminated after the club lead, it's 27.5% for 1-3 or 3-1 and 45% for 2-2.

LINE 1

In the diamond suit, you would succeed if diamonds are 3-3 OR 4-2 with doubleton jack OR 5-1 with singleton jack.

35.53% + (0.3333 x 48.44%) + (0.2000 x 14.54%) = 35.53 + 16.15 + 2.91 = 54.6%

Therefore, Line 1 chance of success is 54.6%.

LINE 2

If we try to cash the second club, we immediately fail 27.5% of the time when LHO ruffs the second club as we pitch me our diamond. We immediately succeed 45% of the time when clubs are split 2-2. The remaining 3-1 splits with RHO short we can overruff, draw trumps, and hope the diamonds will work. BUT - we “know” that RHO has five spades and one club, so he's 5??1 shape and you know RHO is not 5521 because he would never ruff the second club to ensure his 10xxxx of hearts is a trick. So only 5431, 5341, and 5251 are shapes RHO could have where you could survive.

3-3 35.5
2-4 24.2 x 1/3 = 8
1-5 7.3 x 1/5 = 1.5

Total 35.5 + 8 + 1.5 = 45%

So 45% of the time the clubs are 1-3, we still survive. So that's 45% of 27.5% or 12.4%.

Therefore the chance of Line 2 succeeding is 45% + 12.4% = 57.4%.

So it's very close.

Line 1 (rely on the diamonds) = 54.6%
Line 2 (try to cash a second club hoping LHO didn’t shift to a stiff club) = 57.4%

Note I have made no mention of LHO's club switch. The poorer the player, the more likely he is switching to a singleton club, making Line 1 better if LHO is not a good player. An expert may risk leading a club hoping declarer started with exactly one club – and may look foolish if declarer is void in clubs and makes the slam only because a club was led. The better LHO is, the more reason to use Line 2.

My initial impression when seeing this hand was that trying to cash the second club was clear, since you lose immediately less than 30% of the time, and if RHO is short you still get to test the diamonds. It turns out to be closer than I thought it would.
Oct. 5, 2012
Bud Hinckley edited this comment Oct. 5, 2012
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I'm not sure - you can assume that the K asked for count.

HOWEVER - and I was going to ask this later but I will do so now - in a top expert partnership where “we signal what partner needs to know”, I can see the logic in opening leader's partner giving count in CLUBS on opening lead. If we make the assumption that declarer is never bidding 6 with two quick spade losers, I think it makes a lot of sense to give count in CLUBS in this situation at trick 1.
Oct. 5, 2012
Bud Hinckley edited this comment Oct. 5, 2012
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In case you were curious, advancer held Txxx Jxxx x QJxx.

I assumed advancer would bid 1 with this hand - you might believe he should bid 1. If a 2 cuebid is used, I could imagine an auction proceeding after the double being 1-2-2-2NT-3-5 or something similar.
Sept. 23, 2012
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If you were curious, the board was played 12 times, and 8 times East-West were allowed to score their spade game and one pair was in 3 making 5 for 200. The other three scores were 100, 100, and 300. There were no 500s for 5 doubled down 3, which is what I expect the result at my table would have been if either me or the overcaller had taken further action, and even the 500 would have been worth only 4 out of 11 matchpoints.
Sept. 12, 2012
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As I am sure you know, when you are one of the better players and you make a bid like 4, then at least one of the two opponents will expect the large majority of the time you will make your contract - and therefore a 5 sacrifice would be indicated.
Sept. 12, 2012
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I admit I am mildly surprised at the poll since I didn't think I had a 4 with my hand as advancer and I couldn't imagine not re-opening with a takeout double with the overcaller's hand.

But one thing I didn't consider was the vulnerability - as has been stated or implied by a few others, probably at least half the time I bid 4, even with a hand that should never bid it, they will go on to 5 at this vulnerability. And that's the vigorish you gain by bidding 4 with a hand that really should probably pass.

At different vulnerability, I suspect the poll results would have been different.
Sept. 12, 2012
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