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Who Gets The Blame? Winning Suit Contract Leads - Bird, Anthias

Poll: Who Gets The Blame? (3 member(s) have cast votes)

Why all of the errors and inconsistencies?

  1. Rush to print before Christmas (3 votes [25.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 25.00%

  2. Sloppy work by author(s) (3 votes [25.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 25.00%

  3. Poor (no) proof-reading (3 votes [25.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 25.00%

  4. Low quality standards by publisher (3 votes [25.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 25.00%

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#1 User is offline   FM75 

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Posted 2013-January-24, 22:34

I have only read 28 pages of this book.

Table of Contents has 5 inconsistent chapter names
Page 6 - Oops, the Jack move to declarer's hand
Page 11 - Does not have that card.
Page 19 - Does not have that card.
Page 28 - "Doubleton spot-card leads such as work well, much better than most people think." Did anybody read that before printing?

This might seem picayune, but the cards moving around, or not existing, in opening leader's hand makes me wonder if the analysis might be mismatched.

If this were a scholarly work, you could also expect to know the specific constraints on the hands.
It is important to know what the constraints were to repeat the tests. It is also important to know what the assumptions were to understand how closely the assumptions were to what you might encounter, as well as to test the sensitivity of the results to those assumptions.
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#2 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2013-January-25, 10:22

Have you read their previous book on NT leads? I thought it was pretty good, but I didn't examine it critically for flaws like these. I was hoping the suit leads book would be as good.

#3 User is offline   FM75 

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Posted 2013-January-25, 10:41

View Postbarmar, on 2013-January-25, 10:22, said:

Have you read their previous book on NT leads? I thought it was pretty good, but I didn't examine it critically for flaws like these. I was hoping the suit leads book would be as good.

Yes. That is why I ordered this one. I am still early in the book, but I feel that the first was better at providing the statistical profiles of the defense and offense. Those profiles make it easy to understand why some of the novel leads are more likely to be successful than the traditional.

It is nice to see something better than anecdotal, untested approaches. I do not want to detract from the message of the authors. But I think they needed to spend more time and care on this book to at least equal their first. This one seems rushed by comparison. Their first came out a year after their Bridge World article. It is hard to know how much time and research preceded that.

Maybe we should share the blame. Maybe we need to let the publishers know that non-fiction should have higher standards of review, indexes, that layout should not have the hand diagram on one page and the text on an overleaf!
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#4 User is offline   PhilKing 

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Posted 2013-January-25, 10:52

I think the new book is better than the first. Why do we not have any options for people who do not share OPs opinion? Is that not allowed?

The book over-rates leads such as Qx and xx, since the DD program would always guess right anyway when we don't lead the suit, but overall, I thought it was excellent. I am not expecting perfection, or anything close, since this is virgin territory for bridge authors.

The brutal truth is that too few people will buy the book to make it worthwhile proof reading much further (and being part of the Honours series, for reasons of which you are clearly unaware, the publishers were not going to take on this task) but I felt I got my money's worth.
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#5 User is offline   Siegmund 

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Posted 2013-February-13, 00:24

I confess I was very disappointed by the notrump book -- it felt like the kind of thing a lot of us do for ourselves and post on our sites or on the forum, hardly any added analysis or text to read, no particularly good reason why it got printed -- and am disturbed to see that the second volume may have sunk even a little farther.
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