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All comments by Ping Hu
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Steve,

There might be a mistake in your regional's masterpoint calculation. If you check the MPBook page 22. Item 3 said four session regional event masterpoint awards shall be increased by 40%. Maybe the recent ACBLscore version did not calculate it correctly. I calculated the MP award for 1st place was 26.83 without this increase. With it the number should be 37.57. You may want to check with ACBL.

Ping
June 23, 2016
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Pre-set award is not only used in national events, but also club event. The club games have a pre-set MP chart based on type and table size. There is no reason regional/sectional could not use it.

The problem with current MP calculation is there are so many factors and no body knows what side effect you get when you only change one or two factors. The issue you raise was the result of MP formula change a year ago when the proponents wanted to reward pair game more along with some other changes.

The table counts could be a factor in MP calculation, but it should only count the tables in that event as a scaling factor for that event, or you could count all tables in tournament and give a scaling factor for all events in the tournament. This scaling factor has to be reasonably. I would say +-20% of pre-set MP. Applying table counts to all tournament could encourage players to attend tournaments. If a club game pays the same MP as a side game in regional/sectional, players would just play in club. If you make regional/sectional side game to pay 10-20% more, they would play in the tournament.

Although MP does mean much for people in this discussion, but most tournament player DO care about it. They could figure how to maximize the MP they could get. So it is better to make MP award more transparent. With current MP calculation, you don't know what you would get until the event started once you know how many entries there are and sometimes how many entries in other events (like AX).
June 18, 2016
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The winner of this Capital Swiss has an average of 3500 that is not very high. So you cannot use master point as a gauge of strength. Yes MP is corrected to with strength but that correlation may be only 0.3 instead of 0.8-0.9.

I think the best way to award MP in current situation (without a rating system) is to pre-set the MP awards for each event. This could be determined by historical factors like how strong the fields are in past three years. It is just like NABC event where most of have pre-set MP for first place. BOD could adjust them from time to time.

The size of the field could be a factor to scale the MP award up or down from baseline. However it should be a factor that apply to all events, not just AX. If a player could win same matchpoint from club game (let's say 299er), why do they want to play in NABC or Regional that is more expensive to attend? So I think a common table size factor (if it properly calculated) applying to all events could be useful to encourage players to attend large tournament.
June 14, 2016
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Strength of field could only be valid when there is a rating system. Total masterpoints used in KO is not a good measure for strength as masterpoint has been so diluted now.

In absence of a good measure for strength of field, the next best thing is for tournament to advertise a target MP award for first place with expected table counts. The actual award would be scaled by the actual table counts. For example, you could set 2 day Swiss to award 40 MP for 50 teams, one day Swiss for 25 MP with 50 teams. If the actual attendance is more/less than expected, you scale the MP award up/down. The rest of position award would follow the 1st place scaling up/down.
June 10, 2016
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If you think you are good enough to play in LM event you could go to tournament director to ask exemption to enter it.
June 2, 2016
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My suggestion is super flight always play 4 sessions even with two teams. Then you don't have this disparity. This should be something district has control.
May 22, 2016
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I looked at the detailed results. Flight A and B are 2 day 4 session events. Super flight and flight C are 1 day 2 session event. So there is nothing unfair if they played different numbers of sessions.
May 22, 2016
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I agree with you. See my previous comment about if we still need district.
May 12, 2016
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ACBL BoD is not like board of directors of a typical company. It plays part of role of CEO like making major policy and rule changes. The CEO position used to called executive secretary. I think it is more appropriate to be called COO. There is a good writing about how ACBL BoD and BoG operates from the following link.
http://kenmonzingo.com/reports/Blakley_Report.htm

Is this the best governing structure going forward?
May 12, 2016
Ping Hu edited this comment May 12, 2016
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Matthew, you started a good discussion. In your statement you said district was once created with balancing of population. However with ACBL's success in marketing game in retiree in the past two decades, the membership is not proportional to population any more.

A few people had raised the question of functionality of district. Maybe we should ask some more fundamental questions. What should be the best organization structure of ACBL? Is district necessary? Could ACBL members elect its governing body(BoD etc.) directly? Most other organizations have direct elections.

We have seen letters from Bob Hammon and Chris Compton expressing their dissatisfaction (and suggestions) over past few months. I'm sure a lot of other players have similar thought. Is it time to consider a major reform in ACBL to make it more responsive to its members?
May 11, 2016
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It would be best to consider metropolitan area in redistricting to cut down travel. Let district boundary to be in rural area instead of state boundary that would cut a metropolitan area in half.
May 10, 2016
Ping Hu edited this comment May 10, 2016
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AlphaGo has 3 major components: a policy neural network, a valuation neural network and a tree search algorithm that connect them together. It could be trained by self playing the game.

We could use it to solve this opening lead problem. A policy network could identify 2, 2 and 2 as most likely candidates to lead. The valuation network would evaluate the hand based on other cards it sees and assign a score to each lead (presumably it needs some Monte Carlo). It could also take into account of what scoring method used in calculation. So a scenario where a hand has 9 or 10 could have a slight different evaluation that could change the order of results.

Comparing with Go, the card distribution in bridge is limited. When you could see two hands the possibility from the other two hands are about 10 million. When you add constraint from bidding information, it reduces this number a lot. Opening lead is most difficult. If you don't have any information, the possibility would be multiply by a factor of 1 billion from above but it is still much less than game of Go. With bidding information (like declarer is at least 5-4 in major here) this number could be greatly reduced. So a computer simulation is workable, but we may need a drastic different computer program - just like AlphaGo comparing to other computer Go program before it.
April 28, 2016
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AlphaGo has defeated Lee Sedol. Would bridge be next for AI to conquer?
April 27, 2016
Ping Hu edited this comment April 27, 2016
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If X is not alerted as not for penalty, what does it suppose to mean? Are we in an upside down world that every bid does not have a natural meaning?
April 11, 2016
Ping Hu edited this comment April 11, 2016
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If this was “a great experiment”, was it ever concluded as successful?
March 27, 2016
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When I first read this appeal yesterday my first thought was an appeal committee made up by directors (that will start next NABC) is likely to make a different ruling than current player committee.

The issue here is whether there was an misinformation. Based on the fact stated, NS agreement is garbage Stayman and it was explained correctly. So there was no misinformation.

North bid 2 without the typical hand for garbage Stayman. That was a bridge judgement. The only possible issue I could see is whether it falls into the category of psyching a conventional response. It is not allowed under GCC. I'm not clear it is allowed under Mid-Chart. Someone with better knowledge could explain.

I think 2 bid here is a good bridge judgement call with no downside risk, unless NS had pre-agreement that they would bid 2 without heart suit in this sequence, there is no misinformation.
March 18, 2016
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I hope everyone following this thread also read the following post.
http://bridgewinners.com/article/view/an-unsigned-letter-to-the-acbl/
March 16, 2016
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I had a similar experience from past NABC. The case was misinformation. My partner opened 1N and RHO bid 2 (alerted as suction). I had 5 diamonds and 3-3 in majors and doubled 2 to show values. It went all pass. The result was 2 X made 5. It turned out their agreement for 2 is either minor or both majors. We called director and he ruled table result stand. We went to appeal and “screening director” thought we don't have a case. It seems the screening director tries to do is just keep the cases out of appeal committee. We went to appeal committee and got an adjusted score.

My concern with current change is that it avoided a group of players to judge other players. It solves one kind of conflict of interest. However it let a group of TDs to judge other TD's ruling and created another kind of conflict interest. How often is it likely a TD would overturn one of his/her colleague's ruling considering most of the cases went to appeal are not exactly back and white, but could go either way?
March 15, 2016
Ping Hu edited this comment March 15, 2016
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The assumption of this statistical analysis is flawed.
March 8, 2016
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