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A Procedural Definition of Hit/Most/Six

Posted By: Nack Ballard
Date: Friday, 18 November 2011, at 4:25 p.m.

In Response To: A Procedural Definition of Hit/Most/Six (Taper_Mike)

Would you mind carefully evaluating my Procedural Definition of Hit/Most/Six? It incorporates several interpretations on my part that I think I have right, but I'd like to have your confirmation.

Sure, np. I see only two corrections:

• Under Hit Convention, 2, delete "in the inner board." Most points in the inner board outranks any hit. Here is an example of a non-inside hit: For 51\$-52\$-43, C means 24/20 8/5, not the blotty 24/21* 8/4.

• Under 6pt convention, 3, change "Locations" to "Destinations." The difference is clarified here.

As you speculated, parts of your description do seem overly verbose. For example, "Begin at the 6pt, and search outwards in both directions one point at a time until you find a point that is made in one position and not the other. The position in which the point is made outranks the other. In the event that the positions have points made at equal distances from the 6pt, but the made point is located in the inner board in one position and in the outer board in the other, then the position with the inner board point ranks higher in the family." A shorter articulation could be: "The play that ends up with an owned point closer to the 6pt ranks higher. In case of equidistance, the tie goes to the lower point."

Under the "Destinations of Blots and Spares..." header, 1, "skipping over the outer board" does not mean that the midpoint is the first point higher than the 6pt (and therefore that the midpoint and 5pt are equidistant). Even the 1pt is closer to the 6pt than the midpoint. I'm pretty sure you understand that, but I'm mentioning it just in case. "For a blot or spare destination anywhere other than the [player's own] outer board, closer to the 6pt ranks higher" is all you need -- no tie can exist.

My style of explanation is to keep wording short and simple, and then illustrate an example or two, those examples chosen such that false (perhaps unlikely-seeming to me but not to someone else) ways of interpreting the wording are cleared up. At the same time, that (or any) example has the dual purpose of reinforcing the main idea that is being conveyed -- bringing it from the abstract to the real. I wish more instruction manuals were written that way. OTOH, I suppose if you are tailoring descriptions for eventual code-writing, some of the longhand versions could be sensible.

I don't have a strong opinion about where to place the "extra point in home board" exception; I don't fault your order. I think of the exception as relatively unimportant (almost footnotish), though, which is the reason I insert it after the basic description of the hit convention.

I like that you clarified that more hits outrank hits on higher points. I have to confess that when writing the last update, posted here, I hadn't decided which should rank higher, though I'm definitely leaning towards more hits at this time.

Nack

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