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SB starts summoning UI after the start of the auction

#41 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2020-May-09, 03:26

View Postlamford, on 2020-May-08, 20:52, said:

Everyone considers it a real problem that someone can convey selected parts of their system to their partner after they have seen their cards, under the pretence of telling the opponents.


I think there's a matter of degree here, if somebody says they're playing a strong club or their NT range, that's fine, if they say "and SAT" then open 4 then that's clearly much more dubious.

The law atm does not reflect this, I think it should. Basic system, NT range, 4/5M, and basic carding should be OK, anything else not. (basically defining those things as stuff you will remember so not UI)
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#42 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2020-May-09, 10:13

The law does not at present recognize the frailties of human memory. Should it? I think not. Regulation is another matter. Also, the online environment is significantly different to the f2f environment, which is one reason I lean toward doing this, if we're going to do it at all, in regulation rather than law.

If a pair are playing an unusual system, you would have it "okay" to remember the "basic system" (whatever that means) even though some of the opening bids might be unusual (Romex, for example). A pair which has just taken up such a system may find more "forgets" than a pair who has been playing it for a while. Should the law address that as well?
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#43 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2020-May-09, 14:06

If it is the same thing said every time, then no. Online, at least in the EBU, per regulation. But if it's the same thing said every time, then the contents of the hands are a hippopotamus irrelevant.
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#44 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-09, 15:39

View Postbarmar, on 2020-May-08, 17:16, said:

We could, but I think people would find it more annoying than helpful to have to manually request their cards.

No one but SB considers this a real problem.


I think it is a real problem in a friendly but competitive tournament.
I fully understand that the majority of BBO users would not appreciate it (most probably think Alert is a nuisance too).
No idea of forcing it on anybody, just a setting available in tournament creation, like Barometer or Allow Undo.
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#45 User is offline   lamford 

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Posted 2020-May-10, 03:48

View PostCyberyeti, on 2020-May-09, 03:26, said:

I think there's a matter of degree here, if somebody says they're playing a strong club or their NT range, that's fine, if they say add "and SAT strong in third" then open 4 1NT in third then that's clearly much more dubious.

FYP
I prefer to give the lawmakers credit for stating things for a reason. - barmar
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#46 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2020-May-10, 06:21

View Postlamford, on 2020-May-10, 03:48, said:

FYP


Disagree completely, that is part of your basic NT range and would be something you would say F2F on sitting down, SAT would not be.
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#47 User is offline   weejonnie 

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Posted 2020-May-12, 02:05

The EBU have now resolved this problem with their new 'sky-blue' book. Players are now assumed to be able to view their system notes as they play - so there is now no UI.
No matter how well you know the laws, there is always something that you'll forget. That is why we have a book.
Get the facts. No matter what people say, get the facts from both sides BEFORE you make a ruling or leave the table.
Remember - just because a TD is called for one possible infraction, it does not mean that there are no others.
In a judgement case - always refer to other TDs and discuss the situation until they agree your decision is correct.
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#48 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-12, 13:49

View Postweejonnie, on 2020-May-12, 02:05, said:

The EBU have now resolved this problem with their new 'sky-blue' book. Players are now assumed to be able to view their system notes as they play - so there is now no UI.


I applaud the courage of EBU.
Not sure it is the right decision but it is certainly better than no decision and I appreciate how difficult it is.
Now the ball is in WBF court, assuming WBF actually realises it is playing a game vital for survival.
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#49 User is offline   lamford 

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Posted 2020-May-12, 20:04

View Postpescetom, on 2020-May-12, 13:49, said:

I applaud the courage of EBU.
Not sure it is the right decision but it is certainly better than no decision and I appreciate how difficult it is.
Now the ball is in WBF court, assuming WBF actually realises it is playing a game vital for survival.

I agree with this change, and I totally agree that online play is different to live play, but it also presents its own problems. Consulting one's system notes is fine, and confers minimal advantage as most good players can learn their methods. Potentially the biggest problem is consulting your what's app screen to find out your partner's hand. Collusive cheating is very difficult to stop and would confer as big an advantage as consulting a computer would in chess or backgammon. In Online Scrabble I believe one is allowed to check a word in a dictionary, but not allowed to use Anagram Dictionaries. All online play presents insuperable problems in establishing probity.
I prefer to give the lawmakers credit for stating things for a reason. - barmar
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#50 User is offline   ahydra 

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Posted 2020-May-12, 21:01

So, in part, this problem comes down to BBO's lack of a "pre-auction-period" section before the first board's auction period begins. It would be good for EBU to address this in their book, e.g. "the first board's auction period is not deemed to start until dealer has made a call", so that the two sides can discuss systems as much as is necessary, both with partner and with opponents, before play begins, regardless of the fact BBO is showing them some cards. If a pair is found to use this discussion period to somehow pass information about their hand on the first board then we rule under 73B2 and ban them from BBO ;).

I do like the idea of RAs publishing supplementary regulations for online play. From what I can tell, however, NZB is yet to do this. Perhaps I should e-mail our Chief TD.

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#51 User is offline   Gerardo 

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Posted 2020-May-13, 04:36

If going that route, maybe allow discussion until your side has made a call, to avoid dealer shutting opponents up by making a call.

#52 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-13, 15:44

View Postahydra, on 2020-May-12, 21:01, said:

So, in part, this problem comes down to BBO's lack of a "pre-auction-period" section before the first board's auction period begins. It would be good for EBU to address this in their book, e.g. "the first board's auction period is not deemed to start until dealer has made a call", so that the two sides can discuss systems as much as is necessary, both with partner and with opponents, before play begins, regardless of the fact BBO is showing them some cards.

Or perhaps "If the system does not offer an appropriate period for discussion of systems before the first board of a round then the first board's auction period is not deemed to start until dealer has made a call".

View Postahydra, on 2020-May-12, 21:01, said:

I do like the idea of RAs publishing supplementary regulations for online play.

I dislike the idea immensely, but recognise it is necessary in absence of the WBF.
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#53 User is offline   sanst 

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Posted 2020-May-14, 01:34

View Postlamford, on 2020-May-12, 20:04, said:

I agree with this change, and I totally agree that online play is different to live play, but it also presents its own problems. Consulting one's system notes is fine, and confers minimal advantage as most good players can learn their methods. Potentially the biggest problem is consulting your what's app screen to find out your partner's hand. Collusive cheating is very difficult to stop and would confer as big an advantage as consulting a computer would in chess or backgammon. In Online Scrabble I believe one is allowed to check a word in a dictionary, but not allowed to use Anagram Dictionaries. All online play presents insuperable problems in establishing probity.

This is exactly why I donít like online bridge and donít consider it fit for a serious match or tournament. Itís fine for training and for quite a lot of players for amusement, but thatís it. Just to mention another problem: at Stepbridge, the official Dutch online bridge club, you have to alert and explain yourself, just like playing with screens. But thereís no review afterwards, so itís hard for the opponents to discover that there was a wrong explanation. You also have to inform the opponents when you make a call thatís not discussed, what you think, expect or hope that your partner will make of it.
Actually, I donít think thereís much to do for the WBFLC. Itís impossible to prevent cheating, so donít treat it as a serious game.
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#54 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-14, 14:48

View Postsanst, on 2020-May-14, 01:34, said:

This is exactly why I don’t like online bridge and don’t consider it fit for a serious match or tournament. It’s fine for training and for quite a lot of players for amusement, but that’s it. Just to mention another problem: at Stepbridge, the official Dutch online bridge club, you have to alert and explain yourself, just like playing with screens. But there’s no review afterwards, so it’s hard for the opponents to discover that there was a wrong explanation. You also have to inform the opponents when you make a call that’s not discussed, what you think, expect or hope that your partner will make of it.
Actually, I don’t think there’s much to do for the WBFLC. It’s impossible to prevent cheating, so don’t treat it as a serious game.


I think the EBU was much better balanced in what it said about online bridge here.
It seems to me ludicrous to exclude online bridge as a serious alternative when it was already clearly destined to ultimately supplant face to face bridge even before the current pandemic and now for a significant period of time constitutes the only and increasingly credible form of competitive bridge.
Online bridge in screened physical venues has been identified for many years now as the best chance to reduce cheating in high level bridge.
Online bridge at club level is working well enough on BBO right now and I see no particular reason to assume that there is more cheating than in clubs.
There is certainly a heck of a lot less UI flying around and that can only benefit ethical players and the game in general.
The lack of a review period after the hand is a serious problem of BBO that has been highlighted here by some of us, if more protest then BBO may take action.
It is just one example of the things that should be regulated by WBFLC, who cannot sit and fiddle while Rome burns.
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#55 User is offline   sanst 

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Posted 2020-May-15, 01:32

View Postpescetom, on 2020-May-14, 14:48, said:

I think the EBU was much better balanced in what it said about online bridge here.

Thatís about the same as the NBB says about Stepbridge. I think itís a good initiative to make online bridge available for the clubs, but the majority of the clubs is not interested and of those clubs which use it, some 30% of the members partake.

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It seems to me ludicrous to exclude online bridge as a serious alternative when it was already clearly destined to ultimately supplant face to face bridge even before the current pandemic and now for a significant period of time constitutes the only and increasingly credible form of competitive bridge.

Have you any proof for this? I donít believe that the social aspect of bridge will eventually disappear. I certainly hope that we will return to a society where we can interact in a normal human way, including body language. And the way that youngsters behave around here, quite often ignoring social distancing, makes clear that they too need physical contact. Besides, humankind is doomed to extinction without it :D

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Online bridge in screened physical venues has been identified for many years now as the best chance to reduce cheating in high level bridge.

Thatís true, but there you have to make sure that unauthorized forms of communication are completely impossible. Somebody should be watching the players closely. Even the cheating by some top players hasnít resulted in the change to online bridge in international championships.
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#56 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-15, 09:32

View Postsanst, on 2020-May-15, 01:32, said:

Have you any proof for this? I don’t believe that the social aspect of bridge will eventually disappear. I certainly hope that we will return to a society where we can interact in a normal human way, including body language.

I can quote you our national statistics showing a continuous decline in number of federal bridge clubs and total number of club players if you like. I have seen similar data published and discussed for ACBL in the past. Does the Netherlands (which I know has an unusually high number of players) have a different trend?
I do not have such data for BBO players (however one defines that) but I would be suprised if it was not growing even before the current pandemic which has produced a 300% increase in connections. And as the EBU recognises, not all or perhaps even many of those new users are going to abandon BBO if and when they can resume f2f bridge.
Personally I enjoy both ways of playing bridge and recognise each as having specific merits. I suspect this will become an increasingly common mentality although some older players will refuse to go online and some younger players may refuse to play with cards.

View Postsanst, on 2020-May-15, 01:32, said:

That’s true, but there you have to make sure that unauthorized forms of communication are completely impossible. Somebody should be watching the players closely. Even the cheating by some top players hasn’t resulted in the change to online bridge in international championships.

You can make unauthorized communication very difficult by putting people in different rooms with effective access control and screening against wireless signals. Plus of course audio-video surveillance (already increasingly common at top level events in the surrogate form of streamed web video). Change to tablet based championships has already started at junior levels and the WBF itself was planning a tablet based international event even before the pandemic. Some top players were the first to call for such change, although others seem opposed for more or less noble reasons (as has been discussed on Bridgewinners recently). The pandemic might give this scenario a new twist but it still must push towards some kind of online solution rather than paper cards for top level competition.
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#57 User is offline   sanst 

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Posted 2020-May-15, 14:48

View Postpescetom, on 2020-May-15, 09:32, said:

I can quote you our national statistics showing a continuous decline in number of federal bridge clubs and total number of club players if you like. I have seen similar data published and discussed for ACBL in the past. Does the Netherlands (which I know has an unusually high number of players) have a different trend?

No. The total number of players is more or less stable, some 117.000, even slightly rising, but thatís mainly due to many joining the online club already pre-corona. I donít know anything about non-affiliated bridge clubs.

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You can make unauthorized communication very difficult by putting people in different rooms with effective access control and screening against wireless signals. Plus of course audio-video surveillance (already increasingly common at top level events in the surrogate form of streamed web video).

Youíre sure itís not a prison youíre writing about? ;)

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Change to tablet based championships has already started at junior levels and the WBF itself was planning a tablet based international event even before the pandemic. Some top players were the first to call for such change, although others seem opposed for more or less noble reasons (as has been discussed on Bridgewinners recently). The pandemic might give this scenario a new twist but it still must push towards some kind of online solution rather than paper cards for top level competition.

There are some ideas about playing with tablets in clubs, players being separated by plexiglass and sufficient distance between the tables. Online combined with f2f does sound rather good to me, giving the best of both worlds in these circumstances. Hopefully the screens can be removed in the not too far future.
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#58 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2020-May-16, 14:31

View Postsanst, on 2020-May-15, 14:48, said:

No. The total number of players is more or less stable, some 117.000, even slightly rising, but that’s mainly due to many joining the online club already pre-corona. I don’t know anything about non-affiliated bridge clubs.

Ours has been fairly stable (albeit dismal compared to population and bridge history) for the last few years too, but twenty years ago we had over 30,000 and now we are 13,000. I have precise data for the last 7 years:
2013 21,289
2014 18,881
2015 17,901
2016 13,963
2017 13,472
2018 13,459
2019 13,225.
I understand that the ACBL decline is even more marked, no idea about EBU.


View Postsanst, on 2020-May-15, 14:48, said:

You’re sure it’s not a prison you’re writing about? ;)

I have tried looking at some streaming video of top level tournaments and yes it did remind me vaguely of prison... but then all play with screens does, and viewed from above with people scratching their groin and waiting for something to happen it can only get worse ;) I don't think tablets would make this particular aspect any worse though - indeed those more interested in bridge than human pathos or catching somebody cheating might well prefer to follow the accurately recorded play in time delay, with interactive human and computer expert analysis.
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