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Pinochle Notation
#1
Because the development of the Portable Pinochle Notation has noticeably departed from the guidelines of the PGN, PDN, and PBN, I have decided to drop the "Portable" part of the name.  I found it useless before, and I want to disassociate my notation from that cluster.

I am now displaying the newest draft of the notation @ http://www.powerpinochle.com/forum/PN.php

I still think the specs are very long winded; maybe that is unavoidable.

I am now pondering if all these optional Tags/Keywords/Labels are truly valuable.
Does the parser really need them to be uniquely identified?  do human readers?
For instance, do I need to use the label "Annotator" to say who wrote the notation? or can I just say:
"Note Annotated by rakbeater"
Using the Note label for all these lesser value things would markedly reduce the length of the specs page.
Why does Bridge's PBN have such a long list of tags? is it really worth it?

Please have a look at my latest version of pinochle notation and provide some constructive feedback.
I am still time poor, but Marya would like to move forward with her development of new features for WoCG players, and I would like to hammer this thing out so she doesn't have to do double software handling.

Ask yourself, "How would I do it differently?"  Let me know what you come up with.


Please forgive me if there are typos and things, I crammed this into the end of a very long day.

Thanks in advance!
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#2
Hi Mick,

Please don't feel in a rush due to my schedule! Move at your own pace; I will do the same (it's really all we can do).

I am going to go ahead and make the hand histories publicly available with the next update at World of Card Games. I expect this update to take place in a week or two. I hope that the legacy hand animator will be left in place - perhaps at a different URL - so that people (such as myself) who have old hand histories can still replay them. I don't expect support or updates, it's just a thing that is nice to have. I have bug reports that refer to these old histories, and they won't be useful without the old hand animator.

I looked at your notation, and overall it looks fine. I have a few comments:
  1. I don't see it specified what is "optional" and what is "required". Does that mean that every part of the notation is optional?
  2. I like the "Note" annotation, it can hide all kinds of stuff that may be site-specific. I already can imagine using it to show when a seat is vacated or taken.
  3. The only thing I can think that I would add is special handling for TRAM. I assume most hand histories will be generated by computers, and many of them will have a TRAM action ("The Rest Are Mine!"). In this case, individual tricks may not be shown. In order to comply with your notation, the code to generate TRAM would have to include a series of tricks being taken that were not seen when the user played the game. Obviously, on my end It's doable - I will just generate fake tricks. But my preference is to have the hand history handle a TRAM annotation. I will add it as "Note" at the very least (e.g. "Note all tricks below this line were taken in TRAM").
(02-22-2016, 09:29 AM)mickmackusa Wrote:  For instance, do I need to use the label "Annotator" to say who wrote the notation? or can I just say:
"Note Annotated by rakbeater"
Using the Note label for all these lesser value things would markedly reduce the length of the specs page.
Why does Bridge's PBN have such a long list of tags? is it really worth it?

I don't know the reasons for this extra information... From my perspective, I just see players who want to report bugs or discuss strategy. So all of the extra stuff looks like overkill that makes the developer's work harder without any payback (i.e. the user doesn't care about it). It woudn't be a huge problem to provide it, but why bother?

If you could get in touch with the developers of PBN, you'd probably get the best answers to your questions. I'm not sure if that's an easy task, though!

Marya
Play Pinochle at World of Card Games!
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#3
Not sure what I think of the Scoring tag...

This Forum deals mostly with the double-deck four-handed variant, and there are a finite number of scoring tables used in 99% or more of the games.  However, if we want the PN to be flexible enough to handle single-deck and multi-player (I think there are versions of up to 8 players), then to me the Scoring tag will not clearly cover all cases.
  • Is it important to define the scoring table?
  • If so, can this be defined more explicitly in the Scoring section?  (I'm envisioning a detailed table defining the melds and their values.  This could get messy too, with duplicate sequence scores for each type of meld - but maybe there could be a short way to annotate this.)
  • Is it reasonable to define the individual scores for each meld as they appear in the hand histories?  This would allow beginners to quickly understand how the melded cards relate to the individual meld scores, and in turn make up the total meld score.
Just throwing some ideas out there...I'm open to other suggestions.
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#4
To answer my own question about using the generalized Note label, all of the individual/specific labels are important for querying -- so because I am putting value on query-ability, I am locking myself into a rather long list of labels.

About the Scoring label, because the current pinochle world is so tribal and wild, I am taking all of the responsibility away from the parser for meld accuracy and placing it on the annotator.  The reason for including the Scoring data set is for querying records.  As far as teaching beginners how the tabled meld cards relate to the meld points, I would redirect them to the Meld Calculator page.

By the way, I plan to rewrite the Meld Calculator to better accommodate other variants and more scorecharts -- for example, some variant don't deal out 20 cards (20 cards is the current trigger for displaying meld) and some meld charts are 10x meld points, so I need to expand and enhance the page as a whole.  I'll need to build 9's into my programs if I am going to be all inclusive.  More research and feedback will be required.

I have marked the data set specifications on the PN page with MANDATORY, OPTIONAL, RECOMMENDED.  (At this point, I still need to proofread and upload it.)
MANDATORY is difficult to explain as some data sets are variant specific (Exchange Phase) and some data sets are conditional (No Trump, means no Play Phase).
OPTIONAL is pretty straight forward, and I think RECOMMENDED is only for Seat# labels.

Anyhow, it's been a late night after my Aussie Citizenship Ceremony.  I'll try to find some time to update the PN page.

Feedback is appreciated.  Everything is up for debate: Structure, Syntax, Terminology, anything!

p.s. The latest splinter in my mind is about the best way to annotate the winning team of a game.  In a previous notation draft, I suggested "Victor" followed by the team number.  At the moment I am suggesting that Note be used.  When I am handwriting a home game, I usually put a big X under the team that "goes out".  Dare I try to imitate that in the notation?  I worry that that will not be very intuitive.  I would like to hear suggestions on this.  I generally feed it would be good to declare the winner(s) of a game, but maybe others feel differently.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#5
A new consideration regarding human readability of Deal and Meld cards in the suit-prefixed format...

Does it make it easier to read if I delimit the suit with a space?  The character length is a small price to pay if it actually improves readability.

CATTTTKJQQJ DQQJ SAQJ HTKQQ

versus

CATTTTKJQQJDQQJSAQJHTKQQ

I like to keep everything to a minimum, but I thought I would ask.

thoughts?
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#6
(02-26-2016, 12:48 AM)mickmackusa Wrote:  A new consideration regarding human readability of Deal and Meld cards in the suit-prefixed format...

Does it make it easier to read if I delimit the suit with a space?  The character length is a small price to pay if it actually improves readability.

CATTTTKJQQJ DQQJ SAQJ HTKQQ

versus

CATTTTKJQQJDQQJSAQJHTKQQ

I like to keep everything to a minimum, but I thought I would ask.

thoughts?

It's better for both readability and parsing to look for white space (or EOL) to end a suit instead of checking each character for a suit character. Just more solid all the way around.
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#7
Winner is the word I use for winning team.
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#8
(02-26-2016, 07:26 PM)rdwrites Wrote:  It's better for both readability and parsing to look for white space (or EOL) to end a suit instead of checking each character for a suit character. Just more solid all the way around.

If so changed, I think I want to keep each suit letter in the string, even if the suit is void.  My reason for this is for clarity by consistency/expectation.

So a hand with no diamonds might look like this:

Code:
Deal3 CAATTJJ D SAAQQJJJ HAATKQJJ

rather than

Code:
Deal3 CAATTJJ SAAQQJJJ HAATKQJJ


If you look at the notation expecting 4 groups of cards, but you only see 3, then you will probably take longer to register what is missing.
The lonely "D" tells a very quick, clear story.

What do you think?
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#9
Absolutely, I agree.

Just wanted to add that I see in your PPN Announcements that is an excellent outreach effort.
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#10
I have just modified the specs for:
Deal, Discard, Holding, Meld, and Pass to show the space separated syntax.

I've also added:
Winner which may hold Seat# or Team# as a value

This was called for in previous PPN discussions.

I also shifted the examples to end of the specs page.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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