Friday 18 April 2014


Readers’ Comments

148Sunday, 09 February 2014 17:43
Otto Myslivec
In Chess tournaments we have an excellent program for the drawing. It's in use also for World tournaments.
See: http://swiss-manager.at/Default.aspx?lan=1
I belief it could be adapted also for Mah Jong.
Maybe someone of the EMA officers will talk with the developer?
We would Need Money for this but then we'll have a perfect drawing System equal for all of our tournaments.
Monday, 10 February 2014 17:00
Vitaly
Software developers.
I personally doubt that creating mahjong innovation to chess Swiss system could be of real interest to chess developers. Or the cost of such modification might be unacceptable.
On the other hand, more than 1 year ago a group of enthusiasts in Russian have been started the process of developing of required software. Since than 7 tournament has been held with the use of software.
Monday, 10 February 2014 08:36
Vitaly
Those 7 (6 Russian and 1 abroad) tournaments at least twice highlighted problems leading to some new level of software modification -- not speaking of separate versions for MCR and RCR.
Right now several groups of new modifications are discussed so that developer Alexander Egorov has busy time.
How to encourage current software development -- the matter of separate discussion (that's IMHO).
Monday, 10 February 2014 08:04
Vitaly
Chess-based swiss-seating algorithm is well-known and widely adopted both in approach and technicalities (software etc.). And ... it's not as complex. Believe me that somewhat 20 years ago one (me!) can manage 60-player 10-round tournament, without any computers.

Key feature distinguishing seating managing of chess game and mahjong is number of players (4). That fact by far raises computation complexity, both in terms of number of similar-scored groups, cross-play matrix etc.
Monday, 10 February 2014 07:00
Dworkin

Hi, we use for playing Go either MacMahon or Open Gotha seating system. You can create super groups and use rating system. Open Gotha is a very friendly system (Java, StandAlone). It would be interesting to see it applied for Mahjong. It provides tournament seating for up to 800 people for at least 12 rounds and is very stable.

147Wednesday, 05 February 2014 22:47
Martin Lester
Can we distinguish between these two kinds of players? I recall a recent Russian tournament had some sort of entry test to make sure people knew how to score and how to play, so I suppose it is possible.

But should we distinguish? Our game is still quite small and we want to welcome new players; a test might scare them off. Do we have enough players to start splitting tournaments into two groups? It also sounds a bit arrogant to say that we don't want to play with new players!
Thursday, 06 February 2014 07:28
Vitaly
Yes, in Russia for somewhat 2-3 years we had a test for players to enter big tournament. That test related to very basic skills like where tiles should be taken, how calculate fans etc.

As for splitting event in two -- as I have written earlier that should be carried out ONLY at later stage and the purpose is to define winners, no more.
On the other hand beginners may feel much more comfortable while playing against equally performed players rather than toppers.
Thursday, 06 February 2014 10:58
Masahiko Takahashi
So that I vote random at this moment. But if good ranking system is implemented, I prefer 2nd division scheme even sample is small(It is impossible to have huge sample. but better than nothing)
Thursday, 06 February 2014 10:56
Masahiko Takahashi
IMHO fairness is 2 things. "Random" is always fair for all players. The other fairness is reducing luck element as much as possible. It means the skill mahjong should be reflect to the ranking as much possible. But as I posted a lot of sample will be required(maybe over few hundred hanchans). Unless having a lot of sample, it is not fair.
Thursday, 06 February 2014 10:13
Masahiko Takahashi
The involvement of luck is very huge especially in the one or two day tournament. All player should accept this fact. even spliting the group, One of 2nd group player win in the end may happen. so if we introduce spliting group, it is based on EMA ranking. but EMA ranking score better to improve first if it is not be considered who played with so far. and convergence of ranking will take long time and because mahjong is huge luck involved.
Thursday, 06 February 2014 14:24
Senechal D.
1: You and I are worth zero points, which is not accurate at all.
2: The EMA has yet to make any overture to overseas organizations for a standard recognized ranking system.
3: If ever a tourney split should occur it should be after a minimum of 4 hanchan based on that tourney's performance, as past results have no effect on future outcomes.
146Wednesday, 05 February 2014 22:41
Martin Lester
One point this discussion has highlighted to me is that we may have to think about the difference between weak players (who rarely win) and novice players (who don't know how to play).

While it may not be satisfying to win against a weak player, I am sure we all enjoy getting the extra points (unless our opponents benefit from them too). On the other hand, playing a novice can be frustrating as it disrupts game flow, especially if it stops you from getting your second turn as dealer.
145Wednesday, 05 February 2014 08:33
Vitaly
IMHO, splitting should be done after half number of sessions of total sessions of event. A portion of players to get into "Tops" is 25-40% (divisible by 8 or 4 players, for instance, 24, 16, 12 players etc.).
* Last session of event may have specific seating (if no random seating is used) regardless previous seating etc., in order to keep main intrigue in top seats distribution.
144Wednesday, 05 February 2014 08:07
Vitaly
* Playing "mid" sessions. Either random of "special" seating scheme is used.
* As an alternative (which was NOT discussed yet at forum) is to spit whole tournament at certain point in two parts: "Tops" and "Others". "Tops" play a version of elimination (eliminated players go to "Others"). "Others" play regularly (maybe still strictly single-meeting though unnecessarily fixed to the performance).

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Eye-opener at scrabble tourney; also mahjong for blind people?

Happy participants to the Mines Mensa Scrabble Challenges 2009 in Malaysia.MALAYSIA - Six visually handicapped participants created history at the Mines Mensa Scrabble Challenge 2009 that took place recently at the Mines Shopping Fair in Malaysia. For the very first time,  visually handicapped people had taken up the challenge and competed alongside their sighted counterparts in the mainstream tournament.  According to the Malaysian Society for the Blind (SBM), blind people are also able to play mahjong.

The six players who competed in the Scrabble Challenge were selected from the SBM. A new category, 'Seeing is Believing', was created specially for them, complementing the usual categories of Masters, Intermediate and Beginners. The event attracted more than 80 participants from all over the country.


Modified scrabble sets with embossed Braille boards and tiles were provided for these players.

While tournament rules require sighted players to draw tiles from green scrabble tile bags raised above eye-level, this would have given the blind players an advantage as they would have been able to feel the Braille tiles. In view of this, the Braille tiles were placed face downwards in a tray for the players to draw from.

A helper assisted each of the three pairs of blind players to keep time and score. The players were allocated 40 minutes per person per game instead of the usual 25 minutes.

Surprise

Much to the surprise of those present, the blind exhibited a natural ability for scrabble, with some of them forming bingos with ease. Many curious onlookers drew near to observe them play and went away impressed and inspired. In a matter of a few minutes, old preconceived notions and the prejudices of the sighted were swept away by the assured play of the blind competitors.

“The world of the sighted and the world of the blind are very separate”, says SBM sports chairman A. Majid Jaafar, who led the SBM team of visually impaired. “Their lives are very empty, so indoor games are very important to them. SBM provides sports facilities to the blind. These games include Scrabble, in which conventional scrabble boards are modified by having Braille embossed on clear hard plastic grids that are fixed on top of the board’s surface, enabling the blind and sighted to play together.

“Apart from scrabble, SBM members play over twenty different games, including chess, dominos, checkers, congkak, modified ping-pong (in which the balls do not bounce), lotto (bingo) and mahjong,” he added.


(The Star Online)
Comments (4)Comments are closed
1Sunday, 20 September 2009 12:13
Maricar Jagger
Interested to know about the mah jong for blind people. Do you use regular tiles or specially made ones? Might give my mother something to do! Thanks.
2Wednesday, 14 April 2010 07:14
Ray Tong
Maricar and others,
Did you get an answer or does anyone know of mahjong tiles for the blind. I have a mother who is now too blind to play. Playing again would make her so happy.
3Wednesday, 14 April 2010 07:20
Mahjong News
Dear Ray - I have tried to contact these people, but to no avail :-(
Perhaps you can try the Malaysian Mensa Society yourself, for their address please check their site.
4Wednesday, 14 April 2010 11:01
Adrie van Geffen
I doubt if any special sets are on the market for the engraving on most sets is quite definite.
Tom Sloper has some suggestions about this issue: http://www.sloperama.com/mjfaq/mjfaq7s.htm
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