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All comments by Ping Hu
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There is a way to look up a player's name and find his masterpoints from Chris Champion's Power Rating website. However not all players are included.
Feb. 26, 2015
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I recently found a new feature in ACBL partnership desk. When you click on a player's name, it shows the player's total master points, the breakdown of points by color and the ribbon qualifications. So ACBL should be able to do this for all players.
Feb. 26, 2015
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This tells the need to register the entry online before the game starts. If we are selling entries online and player enter they name and ACBL number like BW did for some NABC event, the scoring program could automatically read them and create brackets. We could start every event on time.
Feb. 26, 2015
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I just bid 1 to show balanced GF as if there was no interference.
Feb. 25, 2015
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'System on' just meant the bid has the same meaning as if there is no interference. I play transfer after strong 1 open. So 1 - 1 shows without interference. 1 (1) 1 still show with interference.
Feb. 24, 2015
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In my current Precision we play “system on” for overcall up to 1. So first pass by responder would show 0-7. The opener pass of 2 should show a balanced minimum of 17-19. With your hand like that it is clear opponents had at least an 8 card fit in . Pass before they find it!
Feb. 23, 2015
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It looks to me this is a lot of changes for average SA or 2/1 players. If I want to make these changes I'd rather play a better system like Precision so I avoid these problem altogether (I DO like to play Precision).

For average SA and 2/1 players I suggest a simple fix. The problem you described is before there are two bids 1 and 1 that do not guarantee length.

The simple fix is just making one of them ambiguous.
Let's make 1 guarantee 4+ and denies 4 card majors. Everything else start with 1. Now the responder also makes an adjustment that any direct 1M after 1 and 1 shows 5+. Since opener could only have 4 card major with 1 open, responder with only 4 card major could bid 1 to ask opener to show 4 card major. All these are within GCC and the change is minimum.
Feb. 19, 2015
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I think ACBL needs a CTO in charge of long term technology related issues. One committee lasted for a couple years is not going to solve the problem. Putting the critical decision on CEO certainly has not worked.
Feb. 9, 2015
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After you fill the top 3/4 seats, let's say you fill the rest randomly. There is a chance several weak pairs could sit in the same section in the same direction. Let's say they all scored 30%. This does not affect on pairs in th same direction. However it affects players in opposite directions. The paies in the same section would have an advantage over other sections because they received these gifts. So the how these weak pairs sit is just as important as the strong pairs.
Feb. 4, 2015
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I would suggest 1 denies 4 card major, but 1 does not guarantee it. So after 1, responder 1M shows 5 card major.

After 1, 1 is 1 round forcing to ask opener show his major, direct 1M shows 5 card major.
Feb. 4, 2015
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I play this way with a twist. 1 guarantees unbalanced hand. I prefer Polish Club 2, 2 and 2 but it needs Mid Chart.
Feb. 4, 2015
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Yes, I had one such case in NAP district final a few years ago. There were 14 tables. One pair were very weak and just played one session of 30%, did not play 2nd (final) session. I was in the opposite direction and was the only pair who did not play against this pair. Even we had 2nd best in our section, it was low compare with other top scores and we did not make up that deficit in the final session.
Feb. 4, 2015
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Kevin,

You brought up a very interesting issue. However when I looked at it deeper, I'm not sure what conclusion I could draw from it.

It is true that the chance of #1 seed (seat at #3 etc) to win the event is very high. But what is the cause? Is it because they were strong player and seeded as #1 or because they were seated at table #3, 7 etc.? I would think that #1 seed has the best chance to win no matter where they sit.

I'm in agreement with Peg that the seating in pair event should balance the player's strength for the entire section so that each player has an equal chance. In order to do that we need a true rating measuring player's strength like Chess's Elo rating. I have developed a similar rating for bridge and showed to a few players at Providence.

I tried to run my system with Las Vegas NABC games. The following table is the data from Von Zedtwitz LM pair. It includes section name, NS flag, Average rating of section, # of pair in section, how many Qualified for 2nd day and how many in the 3rd day (final).

Sec. ns. Rating # of pairs Q for 2nd Q for final
A 1 1384 13 8 4
A 0 1457 12 5 1
B 1 1647 13 7 5
B 0 1610 12 6 2
C 1 1655 13 10 5
C 0 1584 13 7 1
D 1 1642 13 5 3
D 0 1656 13 5 2
E 1 1486 13 6 3
E 0 1617 13 5 1
F 1 1380 12 7 2
F 0 1579 13 10 4
G 1 1506 13 7 2
G 0 1612 13 7 3
H 1 1549 13 6 3
H 0 1577 13 5 0
I 1 1505 20 10 6
I 0 1636 20 8 5
M 1 1359 13 5 2
M 0 1443 13 6 5
P 1 1389 12 5 5
P 0 1370 13 2 0
Q 1 1594 12 9 5
Q 0 1617 12 9 5
R 1 1329 13 4 2
R 0 1440 13 6 5
S 1 1447 13 4 1
S 0 1486 13 6 3
T 1 1274 13 4 1
T 0 1513 13 8 6
U 1 1437 13 7 4
U 0 1460 11 5 4

As you could see, there were some noticeably weak sections, i.e. P-EW has only 2 qualified for second day and none went to final. There were also some strong section like in B. If the seating were different, they might be more players qualified from those sections.

Scoring from multiple sections could help a little bit but it could not eliminate the problem if the sectional strength are not same. Suppose there is one bad pair that scored only 30%. For the players in the same direction, each one would get a benefit and a certain matchpoint so the chance are equal. But for players in the other direction only the pairs that played against this weak pair get the benefit. So the chance of players in other direction is unequal. In this case it would be better to only have combined score on the two sections this pair played in, so every player in other direction has the same chance.

A very strong pair would have the same effect but in opposite way. The current seeding practice to spread out strong players only solve the half of the problem. We need to solve the other half to get a real good solution.
Feb. 4, 2015
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It does not matter because the masterpoint will be calculated on ACBL server. The club version of ACBLscore could print out an estimated master point award, but the final award will be determined on ACBL server. Once ACBL has all the club game, validation could be done on ACBL server.
There might be some validation that needs in upload game files. For example, you submit a Unit Club Championship game but the game file does not have the correct type, this could be checked by a program and it asks TD to correct it. This is actually the process US Chess Federation used to process their game files.
Jan. 12, 2015
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We could have a slow migration process. ACBLscore is good at managing club pair games. As long as we don't add new movement and change scoring method (the last was 4th undertrick doubled from 200 to 300), it could still be used to run club pair game and produce game files. If the function to calculate award and club financial is put into a new application that only runs on ACBL master server (as I suggested early and Nic commented it was ACBLscore+ design), we just need to upload game file from old ACBLscore and there is no need to upgrade ACBLscore any more. It could still run without internet connection.

We do need an ACBLscore replacement to run tournament and team games where ACBLscore is not very good now.
Jan. 12, 2015
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TD could use existing ACBLscore to print out the estimated award (from the copy that has the bug fixed). However the final award is always calculated and controlled by the ACBL master server.
Jan. 7, 2015
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You don't need internet connection while running the game. Just need to upload the game file after the game or tournament. Most TDs do it now for other reasons like upload the game to website and publish the results.
Jan. 7, 2015
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In addition to simple software testing issue, this also illustrates an software architecture problem very typical to old programs. ACBLscore tried to do everything in one place. With this master point change, it needs to upgrade hundreds of copies of installations.
A better architecture is to calculate final master point award on a ACBL server. All club and tournament TD just upload the game files to the ACBL server. In case a software problem discovered, all it needs to do is to fix the program on ACBL server and recalculate the award. In this way, TD does not have to calculate it by hands.
Jan. 7, 2015
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Nic,

What I have in mind is some kind of common format to capture per board result. What is the card distribution, what are the bidding records and playing records. Of course it needs to keep information about who played it. These are the common data no matter where it was played or in that event it was played.

ACBLscore packaged a lot of data in its file. Each country might have different data for their tournament. Those data do not need to be in common game file.

PBN/LIN is probably best close to this. XML has too much overhead. It is best to use XML to keep tournament level data.
Dec. 21, 2014
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Kevin,

I completely agree with you that we could not expect ACBL taking a lead on this. It should be a bridge-community wide effort. In practice it should be driven by bridge software developers.

I think the first priority is to have a standard game file format. In chess, they have used PGN as game file format early on and all chess applications use it. Bridge does not have many moves as chess. It is limited to 52 cards and 13 rounds of card play. It should not be difficult to come up with a common standard. Once we have a standard, developers who want to do report and analysis software could all use it, and it is possible to build large database.

This should not limited to US only.
Dec. 21, 2014
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