Dominion Strategy Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Pages: [1] 2  All

Author Topic: Ithaca  (Read 7010 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

jonts26

  • Margrave
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2742
  • Shuffle iT Username: jonts
  • Respect: +3645
    • View Profile
Ithaca
« on: April 28, 2012, 04:22:29 pm »
+13

Hey,

Figured I'd introduce my self for some easy upvotes just to say hi.

I'm currently a grad student at Cornell University.
I discovered Dominion about a year and a half ago. I discovered iso a year ago.
I enjoy board/card games, baking, climbing trees, baseball, procrastinating, and the Oxford comma.
I play a decent variety of games, but the three I play regularly are Dominion, Bridge, and Poker.
I once finished off an entire giant jawbreaker. I've debated putting it on my resume.
Logged

Lekkit

  • 2011 Swedish Champion
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1253
  • Shuffle iT Username: Lekkit
  • Respect: +673
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2012, 04:57:31 pm »
+1

Did you finish the jawbreaker in one sitting?

Also, upvoted.
Logged

jonts26

  • Margrave
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2742
  • Shuffle iT Username: jonts
  • Respect: +3645
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2012, 09:10:54 pm »
0

Sadly, no. Took me a couple sittings. But still an accomplishment I'm proud of.
Logged

ehunt

  • Saboteur
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1462
  • Shuffle iT Username: ehunt
  • Respect: +1712
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2012, 10:11:02 pm »
0

math?
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2012, 10:43:14 pm »
0

Hey,

Figured I'd introduce my self for some easy upvotes just to say hi.

I'm currently a grad student at Cornell University.
I discovered Dominion about a year and a half ago. I discovered iso a year ago.
I enjoy board/card games, baking, climbing trees, baseball, procrastinating, and the Oxford comma.
I play a decent variety of games, but the three I play regularly are Dominion, Bridge, and Poker.
I once finished off an entire giant jawbreaker. I've debated putting it on my resume.
Gotta say all the things you enjoy, I enjoy. Except climbing trees.
And while I enjoy baking, I don't do it that much.
But mostly, now I want to ask you things about sabermetrics...

jonts26

  • Margrave
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2742
  • Shuffle iT Username: jonts
  • Respect: +3645
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2012, 11:09:20 pm »
+1

@ehunt - Engineering.

@WW - I don't get around to baking all too often either but I've found it combines my love of science, desire to build things, and passion for eating sugary treats rather nicely. As for sabermetrics, it's what I use to win fantasy baseball. Or at least place second to greatexpectations.
Logged

theory

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3594
  • Respect: +6034
    • View Profile
    • Dominion Strategy
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2012, 11:16:10 am »
0

I'm learning Bridge now!  It is very interesting.  Do you have any recommendations for an online resource to aid the learning process?
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2012, 11:46:22 am »
0

The problem I have with bridge is the signalling conventions. And wait, I probably shouldn't get into this again.

Toskk

  • Young Witch
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 132
  • Respect: +44
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2012, 12:29:25 pm »
0

I'm learning Bridge now!  It is very interesting.  Do you have any recommendations for an online resource to aid the learning process?

It's totally off-topic for this thread, (and not actually online) but other than books the best resource/program I've found on Bridge so far is the Bridge Baron program:

http://www.bridgebaron.com/

While the interface is just so-so, the AI scales up very nicely, and there's a nice option to help you practice specific conventions to your heart's content.

Also, my grandparents lived in Ithaca.. it's a beautiful place. My grandfather taught/researched genetics (corn hybrids) there.
Logged

theory

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3594
  • Respect: +6034
    • View Profile
    • Dominion Strategy
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2012, 12:43:31 pm »
0

The problem I have with bridge is the signalling conventions. And wait, I probably shouldn't get into this again.

For someone who is obviously very bright and very into analysis, I remain astonished that you are not interested in Bridge, and that you are skeptical about the systems built up around it.

In my (admittedly limited) experience, the constructs of Bridge feel alien, but not because they are arbitrary and artificial, but rather that they are so advanced and developed that a beginner is incapable of appreciating why they are the way they are.

It is somewhat analogous to physics.  It is possible to view physics problems as a matter of memorizing thousands of equations and applying them in the right way.  As anyone who has ever taken physics knows, this is an approach destined to fail.  The correct way is to have a conceptual underpinning of how physics works, and so therefore be able to reason out the approach you should take. 

But the other extreme (you don't need to memorize any formulas or equations, because you should be able to derive everything on your own) is equally foolhardy, because no one has the brainpower to be able to derive everything immediately, and so shortcuts like memorizing certain equations are very handy. 

To complete the analogy: most of Bridge's conventions are logically deducible in some way.  Although the only way to master them is through understanding why they arise, in practice, it is easier to begin by memorizing certain axioms and then later deriving their purpose.  (Chess is quite similar: you could derive for yourself why opening theory is the way that it is, but for a beginner it is easier just to memorize e4 c5 Nf3 d6 d4 exd4 Nxd4.)
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2012, 12:56:07 pm »
0

The problem I have with bridge is the signalling conventions. And wait, I probably shouldn't get into this again.

For someone who is obviously very bright and very into analysis, I remain astonished that you are not interested in Bridge, and that you are skeptical about the systems built up around it.

In my (admittedly limited) experience, the constructs of Bridge feel alien, but not because they are arbitrary and artificial, but rather that they are so advanced and developed that a beginner is incapable of appreciating why they are the way they are.

It is somewhat analogous to physics.  It is possible to view physics problems as a matter of memorizing thousands of equations and applying them in the right way.  As anyone who has ever taken physics knows, this is an approach destined to fail.  The correct way is to have a conceptual underpinning of how physics works, and so therefore be able to reason out the approach you should take. 

But the other extreme (you don't need to memorize any formulas or equations, because you should be able to derive everything on your own) is equally foolhardy, because no one has the brainpower to be able to derive everything immediately, and so shortcuts like memorizing certain equations are very handy. 

To complete the analogy: most of Bridge's conventions are logically deducible in some way.  Although the only way to master them is through understanding why they arise, in practice, it is easier to begin by memorizing certain axioms and then later deriving their purpose.  (Chess is quite similar: you could derive for yourself why opening theory is the way that it is, but for a beginner it is easier just to memorize e4 c5 Nf3 d6 d4 exd4 Nxd4.)
Oh please thank you for saying that's a bad approach to physics. I don't know how many kids I've had approach it that way, and it's all just headaches. It so gets my goat that there are teachers and professors who teach it that way.

Having said that, there's really two major problems I have with the conventions. One, people somehow assume that I'm playing convention X, even having given them absolutely no indication that that is in fact what I'm doing. And then they get upset when it's not what I was doing. Now probably this is people being jerks, but it was pretty pervasive...
The other thing is the 'you have to declare your conventions' thing. Which is just dumb to me - scrubs will be scrubs, to reference rrenaud's article. Cuts out a LOT of the space I see for making really nice signalling. And is more or less impossible to actually enforce, I would imagine.
Which isn't to say that I don't like bridge at all. I mean, I guess I do like it. Just, I have a feeling I'm always going to be disappointed. Because it *could* be better.

Toskk

  • Young Witch
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 132
  • Respect: +44
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2012, 01:09:42 pm »
0

Having said that, there's really two major problems I have with the conventions. One, people somehow assume that I'm playing convention X, even having given them absolutely no indication that that is in fact what I'm doing. And then they get upset when it's not what I was doing. Now probably this is people being jerks, but it was pretty pervasive...

In my opinion this is why online pick-up Bridge (the rough equivalent to Iso) is totally lame. When you don't know the people you're playing with/against and don't have a way to quickly look at which conventions they use, you definitely get a lot of people getting upset/being jerks.
Logged

theory

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3594
  • Respect: +6034
    • View Profile
    • Dominion Strategy
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2012, 01:15:14 pm »
0

But if you don't play Bridge seriously (and I assume you haven't, since your previous posts), how can you criticize those conventions for being the way they are?  The rules of the game are the rules for a particular reason -- they aren't arbitrary, but rather arrived at over the course of a hundred years of play.  Your proposal might be better short-term but not long-term.

It feels like you're a BigMoneyIsOverpowered Dominion player who wonders why no one else adopts his house rule that kills Big Money, which is that every Action you play gives you a +Buy.  Maybe you could play Dominion that way, but that's not the way it is for a good reason.

In other words, I understand someone criticizing a game for fundamental premises or mechanics.  But to criticize a game for its communal rules seems to miss the point, because those rules were created by very experienced players precisely to improve the game.  It would be like saying that chess is lame because it has chess clocks.
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2012, 01:27:29 pm »
0

But if you don't play Bridge seriously (and I assume you haven't, since your previous posts), how can you criticize those conventions for being the way they are?  The rules of the game are the rules for a particular reason -- they aren't arbitrary, but rather arrived at over the course of a hundred years of play.  Your proposal might be better short-term but not long-term.

It feels like you're a BigMoneyIsOverpowered Dominion player who wonders why no one else adopts his house rule that kills Big Money, which is that every Action you play gives you a +Buy.  Maybe you could play Dominion that way, but that's not the way it is for a good reason.

I haven't, but the thing is, I don't need think I need to understand the high levels here. I find quite distasteful the idea that you need to explain to your opponents what it is that you're doing. Takes a lot of the fun out of it. I mean, I understand why the rules are in place. I get why they think they're needed. But the things they're trying to avoid, largely, are the things I think that are fun. My problem isn't that there ARE conventions, or even that the conventions are what they are. My problem is that your conventions are LIMITED, and you're expected to use one of the pre-set ones. I don't like the limitations on ingenuity. So it's more like the way it already is the house rules to stop you from playing BMX, except instead they actually force you into BMX.
But maybe I have no idea what I'm talking about.

theory

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3594
  • Respect: +6034
    • View Profile
    • Dominion Strategy
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2012, 01:37:14 pm »
+2

There's no limitation on using alternative strategies, only limits on trying to conceal information from your opponents.  A game where your opponents don't know what you're bidding would entirely revolve around concealing information and degenerate into a weird mess of people constantly changing their conventions.  It would swamp out all other skill involved in the game.

I suppose maybe that's what you really want to do, is to compete in a game of who could come up with the strangest conventions.  But that's not bridge, that's a totally different competitive partnership game shoe-horned into the bridge framework.
Logged

Toskk

  • Young Witch
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 132
  • Respect: +44
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2012, 01:39:29 pm »
0

But if you don't play Bridge seriously (and I assume you haven't, since your previous posts), how can you criticize those conventions for being the way they are?  The rules of the game are the rules for a particular reason -- they aren't arbitrary, but rather arrived at over the course of a hundred years of play.  Your proposal might be better short-term but not long-term.

It feels like you're a BigMoneyIsOverpowered Dominion player who wonders why no one else adopts his house rule that kills Big Money, which is that every Action you play gives you a +Buy.  Maybe you could play Dominion that way, but that's not the way it is for a good reason.

I haven't, but the thing is, I don't need think I need to understand the high levels here. I find quite distasteful the idea that you need to explain to your opponents what it is that you're doing. Takes a lot of the fun out of it. I mean, I understand why the rules are in place. I get why they think they're needed. But the things they're trying to avoid, largely, are the things I think that are fun. My problem isn't that there ARE conventions, or even that the conventions are what they are. My problem is that your conventions are LIMITED, and you're expected to use one of the pre-set ones. I don't like the limitations on ingenuity. So it's more like the way it already is the house rules to stop you from playing BMX, except instead they actually force you into BMX.
But maybe I have no idea what I'm talking about.

Hi WanderingWinder,

There are actually numerous 'systems' of conventions out there, all of which are modifiable in numerous ways with specific one-off conventions.. I strongly suspect that for *any* method of bidding or conveying hand information you would care to employ (especially once you start looking at how these system were designed) there's some system already in place for it. For example, a lot of high-level Bridge play in countries outside the US involves 'relay systems', or a method by which typically only one player of the partnership describes their hand during bidding (instead of both players attempting to do so).
Logged

paddyodoors

  • Guest
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2012, 01:39:39 pm »
0

But that's not bridge, that's a totally different competitive partnership game shoe-horned into the bridge framework.

+1 for shoe-horned.
Logged

Toskk

  • Young Witch
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 132
  • Respect: +44
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2012, 01:44:21 pm »
0

There's no limitation on using alternative strategies, only limits on trying to conceal information from your opponents.  A game where your opponents don't know what you're bidding would entirely revolve around concealing information and degenerate into a weird mess of people constantly changing their conventions.  It would swamp out all other skill involved in the game.

I suppose maybe that's what you really want to do, is to compete in a game of who could come up with the strangest conventions.  But that's not bridge, that's a totally different competitive partnership game shoe-horned into the bridge framework.

Just to add to this a little, I think you'd find as you start down the path of trying to conceal information that what's actually much more important is efficiency and optimal use of the available bidding space. Attempts at obfuscation are ultimately going to be less efficient at conveying hand information, and thus ultimately not in any players' best interest anyway.
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #18 on: April 30, 2012, 01:48:11 pm »
0

There's no limitation on using alternative strategies, only limits on trying to conceal information from your opponents.  A game where your opponents don't know what you're bidding would entirely revolve around concealing information and degenerate into a weird mess of people constantly changing their conventions.  It would swamp out all other skill involved in the game.

I suppose maybe that's what you really want to do, is to compete in a game of who could come up with the strangest conventions.  But that's not bridge, that's a totally different competitive partnership game shoe-horned into the bridge framework.

I mean, depends on what information you're trying to conceal. I'm used to playing card games where my opponents don't get to know my cards. My partners don't either, but based on playing with me a lot, they can figure out what situations I'm likely to do what in. My gameplay changes a lot based on the score, and it also changes a lot based on how I read my opponents. Now, there are a couple people I've played enough with and talked to about my reasoning enough that they know how I'm going to react to these different situations reasonably well. But it's a lot of feel, and it's going to be difficult to draft up on a card. Furthermore, the big thing is that I'd have to explain what I think my partner means by his bids to my opponents. Like, I know his subtleties, so I know that at this point of the game, he's much more likely to be bluffing, or he's playing more aggressively, or he's now calling for me to do X. But, I really don't see why I should have to tell you that. And maybe that means I don't want to play bridge. But what I'm describing is also not 'degenerate', as you say.

Toskk

  • Young Witch
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 132
  • Respect: +44
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2012, 02:15:56 pm »
0

Like, I know his subtleties, so I know that at this point of the game, he's much more likely to be bluffing, or he's playing more aggressively, or he's now calling for me to do X. But, I really don't see why I should have to tell you that. And maybe that means I don't want to play bridge. But what I'm describing is also not 'degenerate', as you say.

'Bluffing', per se, doesn't really exist in Bridge.. there's incomplete information problems (where you overbid because of insufficient information to know if your partnership can make a bid or not), and there's times where you might intentionally overbid even knowing you have a high probability of failure (typically by a single trick) to keep the opposition from winning a game bid that you are certain they can win (e.g. you know your partnership can win a 4 heart bid, and you know that your opponents can win a 4 spades bid.. so you bid to 5 hearts anyway to keep them from pulling as far ahead). Plus, as I mentioned above, you really have very limited space to bid with.. the existing systems all take into account a vast understanding of the point structure for the game, average distributions of cards and values, and attempt to maximize the amount of useful information that can be conveyed to your partner to identify the optimal bidding level without revealing excess information that the opposition can make use of. Honestly, the optimization that has already gone into Bridge conventions is pretty incredible. If you're interested in reading, I found this book very accessible and informative on the function of conventions and how they were designed:

http://www.amazon.com/Bridge-Conventions-You-Should-Know/dp/189415407X
Logged

WanderingWinder

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5275
  • ...doesn't really matter to me
  • Respect: +4368
    • View Profile
    • WanderingWinder YouTube Page
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #20 on: April 30, 2012, 02:33:56 pm »
0

Like, I know his subtleties, so I know that at this point of the game, he's much more likely to be bluffing, or he's playing more aggressively, or he's now calling for me to do X. But, I really don't see why I should have to tell you that. And maybe that means I don't want to play bridge. But what I'm describing is also not 'degenerate', as you say.

'Bluffing', per se, doesn't really exist in Bridge.. there's incomplete information problems (where you overbid because of insufficient information to know if your partnership can make a bid or not), and there's times where you might intentionally overbid even knowing you have a high probability of failure (typically by a single trick) to keep the opposition from winning a game bid that you are certain they can win (e.g. you know your partnership can win a 4 heart bid, and you know that your opponents can win a 4 spades bid.. so you bid to 5 hearts anyway to keep them from pulling as far ahead). Plus, as I mentioned above, you really have very limited space to bid with.. the existing systems all take into account a vast understanding of the point structure for the game, average distributions of cards and values, and attempt to maximize the amount of useful information that can be conveyed to your partner to identify the optimal bidding level without revealing excess information that the opposition can make use of. Honestly, the optimization that has already gone into Bridge conventions is pretty incredible. If you're interested in reading, I found this book very accessible and informative on the function of conventions and how they were designed:

http://www.amazon.com/Bridge-Conventions-You-Should-Know/dp/189415407X
I've actually read a bit, I don't know a few hours worth, on how these things developed. I think it's pretty boring.
Bluffing may not be a part of bridge. But that does not mean that it could be. It's interesting - you guys think I'm being close-minded here, I think the whole bridge-playing community is. Which is fine - it's just not the game for me.

Captain_Frisk

  • Saboteur
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1257
  • Respect: +1261
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #21 on: April 30, 2012, 02:57:26 pm »
+1

I can't believe that jont's intro thread is dominated by bridge discussion, but I'm siding with WW on this one.

There are tons and tons of games to play, and I know enough about playing bridge to make me feel like I'd rather play other games.  I understand why for super tournaments you need transparency to ensure that people don't cheat (through secret eye blinking, voice inflection, etc.), but I agree with WW that it just seems kindof lame to do that.

My issue with bridge (and any partnership game I suppose) is the stress that I feel when playing with a partner I don't know well... like my poor decisions not only mess up my enjoyment of the game, but I can screw up the enjoyment of my partner as well.



Logged
I support funsockets.... taking as much time as they need to get it right.

jonts26

  • Margrave
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2742
  • Shuffle iT Username: jonts
  • Respect: +3645
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #22 on: April 30, 2012, 04:45:08 pm »
+1

I leave you guys alone for a few hours and look what happens.

I guess I have to chime in here, bullet point style.

  • I don't really play bridge all that competitively. Most of my games happen at a weekly bridge night with some friends. Addressing the few points about secret conventions, well, in a tournament setting it's best to have known conventions just like it's best to use the point counter in dominion for tournaments. It might not be the best ideal (some might argue), but it's the most fair for the setting. As far as non-tourney settings, which is where I play, eventually the conventions are known (especially since we routinely swap partners), and we'd have to play a different game than bridge, namely, a game called lets invent some new conventions. Personally, I just like playing bridge.
  • Also, there's still room for knowing your partner well. Just because there's a ton of signaling doens't mean that you could play just as well with another person. People still have quirks and tendencies, even if there are conventions.
  • As for conventions in general, sometimes they feel a little restrictive. I am often forced to bid a certain way as to not lie. Though sometimes I do lie. So occasionally the conventions hurt more than they help. But usually they do a good job. The most fun with conventions is when you sort of have to make something up on the fly. And then your partner has to deduce what you mean based on conventions you aren't using. There's still a lot of room for analytical thinking and creativity.
  • As for not wanting to tell your opponents information, well I find that all of the information gleaned from bidding to make the playing more strategic. Unlike many other card games, you have a ton of information to keep track of. And the line between making your contract and not making it can be very fine indeed.
Logged

nightdance

  • Ambassador
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 32
  • Respect: +14
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #23 on: May 05, 2012, 05:14:05 pm »
0

Cornell eh? My brother is going there for college next year. Maybe I'll come say hi. =)
Logged

jonts26

  • Margrave
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2742
  • Shuffle iT Username: jonts
  • Respect: +3645
    • View Profile
Re: Ithaca
« Reply #24 on: May 07, 2012, 07:16:17 pm »
0

Sure. I'm here irregularly though.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2  All
 

Page created in 0.11 seconds with 20 queries.