1,667 reputation
520
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location Hampshire, United Kingdom
age 50
visits member for 3 years, 2 months
seen yesterday

I live in Lymington, Hampshire, and work in the Law Courts, which may have made my English slightly pedantic. I realize that Americans and other ex-colonials labour under a disadvantage, and regard it as an holy duty to assist them in speaking (and thinking) clearly.


Apr
22
comment In bridge, how can you “see” (locate) most of 52 cards halfway into the play?
@TomAu: Yes. Obviously you have to take into account what opportunities each opponent had, but with two aces and two other honours, most people would bid. This person did not bid: therefore, he did not have two aces and two other honours.
Apr
22
answered In bridge, how can you “see” (locate) most of 52 cards halfway into the play?
Apr
14
comment Can a tank attack across water within the same space (Germany to UK)?
Hmm, does that imply Ireland is a seperate zone?
Apr
14
awarded  Custodian
Apr
14
reviewed No Action Needed Can a tank attack across water within the same space (Germany to UK)?
Apr
10
comment Is Duplicate Bridge (standard Matchpoints) a game of pure skill?
@Nick: interesting analogy. The rulebook for Railway Rivals specifies that each player rolls the die on his turn to decide how much rail he can build. Nowadays it is usually played with one dieroll per round, so that everybody has to make best use of the same luck. Is that 'pure skill'?
Mar
23
comment Improved wording for dealing out cards
"Equal number".
Mar
21
answered Avoiding the “wrong” calamity
Mar
16
comment Why is card counting considered illegal in Blackjack?
@EpsilonVector: If casinos took bets where they didn't have an edge, they'd go out of business. (Yes, even if the game was precisely even; the mathematics is interesting).
Mar
10
comment Diana Stanley dreams of a sunken city
+1 for the title alone.
Mar
6
comment What are the chances of shooting the moon in Hearts?
Further research (and a cup of coffee) reveals that the Losing Trick Count only deals with AKQ. Reasonable in Bridge terms, but a suit AKQxx (LTC 0) is not certain to take all the tricks in Hearts; somebody with Jxxx will take the fourth round. This question (with OP's conditions) seems unanswerable, since there is no way but inspection to discover whether a particular hand fulfils the criteria (or that's what my cup of coffee says, anyway.) If you removed some of the specifics, such as Microsoft's rule that nobody can play a point card on the first trick, might Maths.SE be interested?
Mar
6
comment What are the chances of shooting the moon in Hearts?
Sadly, it's more complicated than it appears. 13 clubs is a successful (inevitable) moonshot, but 13 of anything else is automatic failure (admittedly you score no points unless someone else shoots the moon). Even your example hand could fail: ace of clubs, ace of diamonds on which somebody discards a small heart, and a heart lead will mean you score all but one point. My own opinion, more empirically based than provable, is that the number of hands on which you can guarantee to shoot the moon is vanishingly small, but the number on which you can bluff or squeeze a result is quite large.
Mar
6
comment What are the chances of shooting the moon in Hearts?
Much depends, in real lfe, on the skill and strategy of the other players; are you assuming that they attempt to minimise your chance of shooting the moon, or to minimise their score? Also, limited information plays havoc with precise probabilities.
Mar
6
comment Am I at legal risk if I use a mechanism from another game in my own design?
+1 for the advice 'worry more about copyright than patents'. As I understand it, mechanisms can be patented, but only if they are provably original; cards controlling others almost certainly wouldn't qualify.
Feb
27
awarded  Custodian
Feb
27
reviewed Leave Closed What are rules for an overcall that have wide acceptance?
Feb
17
comment Can one ask for a “time out” to study the hand in bridge?
If you have no choice at the second trick, then the number of trumps etc cannot make a difference to your play; so yes, it is unethical to suggest that it can. You make a plan when you have a decision to take.
Feb
17
answered Can one ask for a “time out” to study the hand in bridge?
Feb
8
revised bridge wiki excerpt
tidied up
Feb
7
suggested suggested edit on bridge tag wiki excerpt