By: Shireen Mohandes
Originally Published in Bridge Magazine, Christmas,
Mike Lawrence, three times World Champion and prolific writer,
has diversified into bridge software with Counting at Bridge, and
interactive tuition program.
Mike Lawrence, arguably one of the best living bridge authors, has extended
his lucid style and accurate analysis to the field of Bridge software.
Although some defensive problems are included and bidding decisions
are discussed, Counting at Bridge concentrates on declarer play,
specifically counting. There ae some additional themes, though, to keep
you from assuming that the problem is always a 'counting' problem.
The author takes a series of hands and talks you through the play, asking
questions about the opponents' distribution and showing you how you should
be thinking as each trick is played. You are bombarded with questions like:
what does East have in hearts?, how many points has West shown?, who
has the outstanding diamond? At each critical point you are asked what
you should play. When you have answered, whether correctly or otherwise,
Mike explains the reasoning which produces the right answer. You are in
effect being shown a series of events, which are interrupted with interrogation.
In this program you cannot play the hand yourself, as it is 'scripted'.
The accompanying manual explains that the program is aimed at intermediate
players. Having completed half of the hands I would recommend it to players
of a wider range of abilities.
The software is by Fred Gitelman, top Canadian player. Fred and Mike
are working on a new project and I am sure that the bridge world is looking
forward to their latest collaboration.
|* = poor ***** = excellent
|Ease of installation
|Bridge technical merit
|Value for money