Card game bridge 'should be exempt from VAT'

BBC News

The card game bridge is a sport and should be exempt from VAT, according to an opinion by the top adviser to the European Court of Justice. In an ongoing case brought by the English Bridge Union, advocate-general Yves Bot said it was a sport because it required mental effort as part of a challenge. HM Revenue and Customs had refused to reimburse the English Bridge Union for VAT payments on entry fees to tournaments. EU law requires proof of benefits to physical or mental well-being for a sport to claim VAT exemption.

Garden Bridge deal was close to collapse in December

BBC News

London's controversial Garden Bridge project came close to collapse last year, it has emerged. Letters seen by the BBC show the chairman of the Garden Bridge Trust Lord Davies warned London mayor Sadiq Khan "full participation" was needed at the project's "critical stage". In a letter sent on 9 December, Lord Davies lobbied Labour mayor Mr Khan to provide the same guarantees offered by his predecessor. Lord Davies also criticised Dame Margaret's review being set up, claiming it gave "a degree of uncertainty" about the project and damaged "the trust's ability to raise the balance of the funds required from the private sector".

Program for a Better Bridge Game; A College Partnership Aids Industry Research - The Washington Post

AITopics Original Links

Tom Throop knows a lot about computers and the game of bridge. Later, he designed bridge software for Radio Shack, Apple and Commodore computers. Eventually, he founded a company in Bethesda called Great Game Products Inc. that focused on selling his Bridge Baron software. But when Throop, 64, wanted to make the Bridge Baron a better player -- it lacked the ability to develop a strategy at the beginning of a game -- he knew he'd have to get some outside help in the world of artificial intelligence.

World Champion Bridge Program

AITopics Original Links

Bridge Baron is a computer program that plays bridge. It won the 1997 world championship of computer bridge, the Baron Barclay World Bridge Computer Challenge, as reported in The New York Times and The Washington Post. The five-day competition, which was hosted by the American Contract Bridge League in July 1997, included five computer programs, from the US, Japan, and Germany. The Bridge Baron won every head-to-head match that it played against the other programs.

Wedding Announcements My Grandmother Wrote for Me Over a Single Game of Bridge with Her Friends

The New Yorker

She moved back to the East Coast after a chance meeting with David at Jazz Night at the Lake Isle Country Club, in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, where the bride and bridegroom's grandparents are members. It is with total and complete delight that we announce the wedding of Bess Kalb, twenty-nine, to Jonathan Cohen, also twenty-nine. The bride absolutely loves children, so this won't be a problem. Last weekend, Bess Kalb, twenty-nine, and Evan Lowe, thirty-one, were married in front of family and friends at the home of the bridegroom's parents, in Larchmont, New York.

Are Bridge Players Subconsciously Changing Their Game Strategy in Response to Trump?


The researchers used data from tournaments in 1999 and 2015, played by both Americans and Europeans. A statistical assessment of plays, which I don't fully understand, showed that Americans played more No Trump contracts in 2015 compared with in 1999, particularly when researchers cherry-picked which data to analyze. This was not the case in Europe, which the authors say lends more credence to their theory. The p-value is less than .05, Of course, there's no actual reason this correlation means there's any reason to assume causation.

Computer Bridge: A Big Win for AI Planning

AI Magazine

A computer program that uses AI planning techniques is now the world champion computer program in the game of Contract Bridge. As reported in The New York Times and The Washington Post, this program -- a new version of Great Game Products' BRIDGE BARON program -- won the Baron Barclay World Bridge Computer Challenge, an international competition hosted in July 1997 by the American Contract Bridge League. It is well known that the game tree search techniques used in computer programs for games such as Chess and Checkers work differently from how humans think about such games. This article gives an overview of the planning techniques that we have incorporated into the BRIDGE BARON and discusses what the program's victory signifies for research on AI planning and game playing.