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There Should Be No Requirement To Read Chat

#1 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-26, 01:23

There should be no requirement to read chat. If you have a problem, call the director. I don't need to be harassed my Moira with "time" "speedball" "time please" blah blah, when I'm taking 25 seconds on a critical bid in a competitive auction, and she just took an hour and a half on her cold 4 spades when she could have claimed after trick 3.

I am happy to slow down if you feel the need to harass me.

Best,
Nak
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#2 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-March-26, 10:19

What if your answer to 1-2 is "diamond support"? How do I ask the actual question I need? Carding? Cuebid style? Preempt style?

But I got "TIME"d Wednesday. The funny thing was, we were at trick 5 on the last board of 3, non-speedball, and the clock had just ticked down to 7... I carefully avoided any response when we finished with 4 minutes to spare and sat around for 2 of those waiting for the other tables. I get it.

But seriously, no.
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#3 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-March-26, 14:08

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-26, 10:19, said:

What if your answer to 1-2 is "diamond support"? How do I ask the actual question I need? Carding? Cuebid style? Preempt style?



That is another can of worms, but one that BBO could do more to resolve.

To start with, offering a more effective and intuitive way to require further explanation: clicking on 'Explain' is ambiguous even when intentional, more often a comprehensible and possibly desperate attempt to dismiss the window. If one does not dismiss the window (preferably using an X in top right hand corner) then it should be obligatory to ask a question before disturbing opponent again ("forcing to what level, if any?").

It would also be useful if the TD received some warning that things are not flowing smoothly.
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#4 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-March-26, 14:22

That would be really nice.
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Posted 2021-March-26, 22:56

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-26, 10:19, said:

But I got "TIME"d Wednesday. The funny thing was, we were at trick 5 on the last board of 3, non-speedball, and the clock had just ticked down to 7... I carefully avoided any response when we finished with 4 minutes to spare and sat around for 2 of those waiting for the other tables. I get it.

Sounds like one of my old club's directors.

I used to joke that he'd be early to his own funeral.
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#6 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-March-27, 00:00

It would not be such a problem if all pairs were required to post a convention card.


Sure, you could argue that many tables on BBO are "pick-up" pairs, in which case the only meaning that one can discern (guess) is from their profile - not usually helpful.
OTOH, if every tournament specified a default system and players knew that if they didn't pay to it - pick-up or not - then the incentive to either play to the default system or to post your own card would be much greater.
There is absolutely no point in asking for an explanation that only means something to the person explaining. Who cares what they think?


Clearly, 'playing to time' is another issue that will not be solved until Bridge catches up with Chess and introduces clocks. But then, Bridge is a new-fangled game that is still getting its house in order.
I'm not holding my breath though. I was taught to play Chess by an International Master in Correspondence Chess - pre-internet of course.


I just wish the PTB's would hurry up.
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#7 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-28, 23:16

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-March-27, 00:00, said:

It would not be such a problem if all pairs were required to post a convention card.


Sure, you could argue that many tables on BBO are "pick-up" pairs, in which case the only meaning that one can discern (guess) is from their profile - not usually helpful.
OTOH, if every tournament specified a default system and players knew that if they didn't pay to it - pick-up or not - then the incentive to either play to the default system or to post your own card would be much greater.
There is absolutely no point in asking for an explanation that only means something to the person explaining. Who cares what they think?


Clearly, 'playing to time' is another issue that will not be solved until Bridge catches up with Chess and introduces clocks. But then, Bridge is a new-fangled game that is still getting its house in order.
I'm not holding my breath though. I was taught to play Chess by an International Master in Correspondence Chess - pre-internet of course.


I just wish the PTB's would hurry up.


Yes, a time control is what is most needed in bridge. I've been bullied by "good" players for 30+ years at the bridge table. Enough is enough.

Nak
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#8 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-28, 23:20

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-26, 10:19, said:

What if your answer to 1-2 is "diamond support"? How do I ask the actual question I need? Carding? Cuebid style? Preempt style?

But I got "TIME"d Wednesday. The funny thing was, we were at trick 5 on the last board of 3, non-speedball, and the clock had just ticked down to 7... I carefully avoided any response when we finished with 4 minutes to spare and sat around for 2 of those waiting for the other tables. I get it.

But seriously, no.


Good point, of course. This needs to be a consideration.

Nak
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#9 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 00:27

I think bridge is about 128 years behind. :-)

https://en.wikipedia...hess_tournament

Nak
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#10 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 09:11

I've said this before, but unless you're able to go to MTGO levels of clock management, this is impossible. Even if you are, anything you try is gameable.

I had one yesterday; 1NT (12-14)-p-2C[1]-p; 2D[2]. Now, if I'm on the clock for my explanations, the first set are going to be minimal, the second if necessary as quick as possible to get out of town. Yes, things like BBOAlert/FD will help, but only if they don't ask again because whatever explanation you give is not understood by this pair. Of course, if they're on the clock, then my first set are also going to be minimal, but I'll be very careful to explain everything in infinite detail at 5 wpm on reask. Or I just won't answer (lots of pairs just don't answer my questions) because your clock's ticking while you're waiting.

[Serious Edit to resolve missing footnotes]
[1] "forces 2[di]", if we used the level of explanation many players do with, say, Cappelletti or Inverted Minor raises.  
"To play 2[di], or various INV, or better, hands with or w/o [di]" is close to what we use.  
A complete list is about 200 characters last I tried it.
[2] "forced" (again, if we use that level of explanation.  And we do, because it is.  
But if you get the first explanation, it's not helpful.  I was asked about this on the weekend, 
so I re-explained as "if I bid anything else, I am walking home".  
I've used "shows 13 cards" or "yes, dear" when the opponents would understand it, but those are more likely to trigger 
bad reactions if I guessed wrong.  "If you wanted to play 2[di], well, here we are" is another one that might work.)

Yes the clock can be gamed. Yes, people use more than their fair share. Oddly enough, the directors know this and are resolving things as such (online, they get less of the benefit of the doubt when resolving hands after the third time the adjustment has to happen; IRL, when it comes time to pull a board, A+/A- (or A+/A, depending on whether they're actually trying to make it to time and failing or just don't care).
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#11 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 14:04

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-29, 09:11, said:

I've said this before, but unless you're able to go to MTGO levels of clock management, this is impossible. Even if you are, anything you try is gameable.

I had one yesterday; 1NT (12-14)-p-2C[1]-p; 2D[2]. Now, if I'm on the clock for my explanations, the first set are going to be minimal, the second if necessary as quick as possible to get out of town. Yes, things like BBOAlert/FD will help, but only if they don't ask again because whatever explanation you give is not understood by this pair. Of course, if they're on the clock, then my first set are also going to be minimal, but I'll be very careful to explain everything in infinite detail at 5 wpm on reask. Or I just won't answer (lots of pairs just don't answer my questions) because your clock's ticking while you're waiting.

Yes the clock can be gamed. Yes, people use more than their fair share. Oddly enough, the directors know this and are resolving things as such (online, they get less of the benefit of the doubt when resolving hands after the third time the adjustment has to happen; IRL, when it comes time to pull a board, A+/A- (or A+/A, depending on whether they're actually trying to make it to time and failing or just don't care).


Chess clocks don't work in the way that I imagine you are imagining they do (he said carefully).
In most computer Chess clocks (playing the Blitz/Lightning form of the game - which is how tournament Bridge works) it is common to ADD some time when you make a move.
This means that every time you move, you gain 5-10 seconds.
Naturally, you get to think while your opp is thinking.


The main difference is that because Bridge is a "semi-closed" game in that you can't see half the board, but you are entitled to know "approximately" what every bid or call means. This means that there are sometimes calls for further explanation. The call may be reasonable or unreasonable - it's up to the Director to decide.


The clock can be stopped in these cases until the Director deems that a satisfactory answer is given. In the "long" form of Chess, the DOP (Director of Play) has complete control of the clock.
I believe that there is a similar arrangement in games where people hit round objects with sticks (or specified parts of their body). I understand that similar arrangements work with these games too.
Bridge is the only game that I know that allows Trump-like people to lawyer up endlessly until their opponents give up in despair - no matter how baseless the claim is.


With a clock, it is always possible to determine that the questioner is behaving in a manner inconsistent with ethical behaviour and be awarded a negative score.
Bad behaviour is bad behaviour in any form of any game.
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#12 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 14:44

We could in fact do a lot of that. However, I would need to see "how it works", in as much detail as FIDE does for 10+2, to see how it could be gamed.

I am sure it could be done; I am sure it could be dealt with. On the other hand, the current rules could be enforced well enough, too. If that's the important part. But it seems that those who care about correct disclosure are finicky SBs and "we don't have to teach our opponents how to play bridge", and heaven help them if anyone gets it wrong to them after the TD nails them to Law 40, and heaven help the TD if they explain that look, this guy doesn't understand your question, is why his answer isn't complete.
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#13 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 15:32

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-29, 14:44, said:

We could in fact do a lot of that. However, I would need to see "how it works", in as much detail as FIDE does for 10+2, to see how it could be gamed.

I am sure it could be done; I am sure it could be dealt with. On the other hand, the current rules could be enforced well enough, too. If that's the important part. But it seems that those who care about correct disclosure are finicky SBs and "we don't have to teach our opponents how to play bridge", and heaven help them if anyone gets it wrong to them after the TD nails them to Law 40, and heaven help the TD if they explain that look, this guy doesn't understand your question, is why his answer isn't complete.


I think it not only could be done, but must be done. FWIW I don't buy your argument that any rule can be gamed, so why bother: sure it's true, right up to democratic elections, but that just means rules should be carefully crafted and enforced, not that we should renounce them or the goals behind them. I also see correct disclosure as something of a strawman here, the discussion was about timing management. It's not hard to see that things must change to become a real sport or even just a more compelling game, f2f and even online.

One down to earth real world example: in a BBO tournament, over partner's 1NT I bid 2 explained as transfer to hearts (took me a few seconds which should not cost anyone). LHO pauses 39 seconds (counted) and then passes. Far from me to harass him in chat, he probably has a reason. Turns out he has 2 Jacks. When the hand is over I ask him politely why it took so long, he replies that he didn't realise it was his turn to call. I say no problem and we depart on good terms. I trust and hope that the explanation was correct, but could the platform and the rules not do better? He could have been advised more effectively that it was his turn and how much time was passing, he could have been penalised for the pointless (and misleading) delay by a clock mechanism, the platform could even have automatically passed on his behalf without damaging the bridge result (maybe even making it fairer), as it could have hidden a short delay and flagged a long one, specifying clearly to partner and TD that it was UI. And that's just for starters :)
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#14 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-March-29, 16:46

There are a lot of things we can do, I will grant.

I'm not saying "don't bother, it won't work" (although I believe it's a lot harder to make work than the "chess clock" people think, same as it's a lot harder to make ELO work in bridge than the chess people think), it's Mencken's rule: "there is always a well-known solution to every human problem — neat, plausible, and wrong." (The common misquote is better here, as usual, which is why it's misquoted so much). "Oh, having chess clocks would obviously fix all the timing problems, and it's ludicrous that we haven't gone there consistently yet. The administrators must not care about slow play."

I repeat what you quoted, though - there are already rules, and they "could be enforced well enough, too, if that's the important bit." Look to why they aren't, figure out what should be done about that (some of the rules should be changed and tweaked, but some of the "but I had to think this time, it was a hard hand" (yeah, what about the other 20?), or "how dare you punish *me*" nonsense would need to be handled as well. Change the way it's done with clocks or the like? "Oh god, another new thing we have to ignore do? When will they stop changing everything for no reason and just let us play the game we know?"

I would much rather work to fix the issues we have with the tools we already have, unless it's very clear that that either will not work or has been tried and doesn't work. Because the new stuff will work just as well as the current stuff, unless said issues are dealt with, and be yet another expense.

And actually, the original poster was complaining that they shouldn't have to read chat to get information - like questions about their unclear explanations, perhaps? - because it slows down the game. And they have a point, for speedballs at least.
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#15 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-30, 01:47

Excellent discussion.

Indeed, a time control for bridge is daunting.

I think there are some ideas worth trying out at least. With beer.

Nak
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#16 User is offline   9NTredbl 

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Posted 2021-March-30, 01:58

View Postmycroft, on 2021-March-29, 16:46, said:

There are a lot of things we can do, I will grant.

I'm not saying "don't bother, it won't work" (although I believe it's a lot harder to make work than the "chess clock" people think, same as it's a lot harder to make ELO work in bridge than the chess people think), it's Mencken's rule: "there is always a well-known solution to every human problem — neat, plausible, and wrong." (The common misquote is better here, as usual, which is why it's misquoted so much). "Oh, having chess clocks would obviously fix all the timing problems, and it's ludicrous that we haven't gone there consistently yet. The administrators must not care about slow play."



I totally agree. ELO could work, I think there multi-participant extensions, so that joint win/loss distribution is modeled.

I certainly don't want to finger any administrator or director whatsoever.

Nak
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