Monday, 6 June 2016

Improve Your Bridge - a How to

This post is here to encourage you to read the pdf file below.

The document covers two things. An analysis that says we would all play better bridge if we stopped immediately try to think –  Which card should I play now ?  And instead asked ourselves the question –  What is going on ?

The second part of the document covers how you can use aaBridge to practice answering the question –  What is going on ?,  in an unhurried but realistic environment.

aaBridge can be downloaded from 

Friday, 3 June 2016

Learn to Visualize Hands with aaBridge

As is normal this short post is available as a .pdf file.

One of the hardest skills to develop as a Bridge player is to visualize what a hand will look like after a particular trick or tricks have been played.

Hardest of all is to correctly imagine the cards that will be remain in the hands you cannot see.

The document gives an approach to practicing these skills.

A Visualization Example hand in built into aaBridge.

On the aaBridge opening page, left hand column, named Visualize you will find it just below the "---Examples---" divider.

aaBridge can be downloaded from

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Play an existing deal in aaBridge

This post is available with more detail and with larger images as a pdf file.

As described in an earlier post you have been working through a tutorial or a lin file with a few hands in it.

To make sure some of the other seat settings are not set from a previous use.   Look in the Right hand setting column  "Seat Choice".

Click the  Apply Defaults  button  (the pink dot IS visible in aaBridge)!

Select the  Hide  setting  (the green dots are NOT visible in aaBridge)

Or if the  Show  (show Opps hands) is more to your needs choose that.

Enter the Deal
You have pressed  Enter the Deal  and have gone down "the rabbit hole" and into in that particular deal.

Now you can see the  Edit  Play  and  Review  buttons.    You always start in Review mode.  That is why the Review button looks different.

Click   Edit
Click   Play

and you are done.     Click the cards  to play them

Why this works (in case you are interested) is because when you pressed  Apply Defaults earlier, aaBridge was set to start the Review with the lead already played and showing.

When you click  Edit  aaBridge discards any play already recorded from after the position being shown.  When you click Play the aaBridge bots will do their  best.

You can always just stay in  Edit  mode and play the cards for all hands.

You can also control visibility (Show / Hide  button in green baize area) and or rotate the seat positions  "< > " buttons in the upper left.

Hint   -    If the bots defend badly, you can fix it by ...
Click Edit,     Click Undo,      Play  the correct card,       Click Play,     and continue.

Cont  &  1st

Two shortcuts have been added as a convenience.

Cont   does an  Enter the Deal  and then jumps to the end of any play and goes into Play mode.   You are then left to continue the play against the  aaBridge  bots.

1st     does an  Enter the Deal  and then discards all play except for the 1st lead. You are then left to play the whole hand yourself against the  aaBridge  bots.

You need to make these two buttons visible before you can use them.  On the menubar click
Options   >   Show  and   now, in the far right hand column and check the 'Cont' and '1st' checkboxes.

More  information is in the document, see start of post.

Monday, 4 April 2016

Seat Choice and that Pink Dot

The aaBridge Seat Choice settings (on the right.)

The Seat Choice options control the visibility and position of the displayed hands as you Flow through a hand.

In particular they are most powerful when you are inside a deal having pressed the Enter the Deal button.

Most of the settings only apply in when you are inside a deal.  An exception is the settings at then end, all shown as red.

These let you change the visibility and rotation even when you are playing a tutorial.

This way you can choose see more, or less, than that the author of the tutorial intended.

What is the Pink Dot all about ?

The pink dot is there to remind you that the  Apply Defaults button will put everything, all the seat rotations and seat visibility "back to normal".

If you hover the cursor over it (the real pink dot) more information will be shown to you.

You cannot click the Apply Defaults button too much.

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Memorize Suit Distributions - a How to

This post is a teaser for the short pdf file below.

PLEASE read the full document.

The core of the method is to learn tables like you learnt your multiplication tables as a child.

The structuring is important and is explained in the pdf.

Using aaBridge to test your knowledge is also covered in both Training and Exam mode.

Or see the YouTube video

On the left is   Suit Distribution Exam Mode ruining on aaBridge.

You can get aaBridge (free) from

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Down the Rabbit Hole

This post is available with more detail and with larger images as a pdf file.

The core idea is that the Enter the Deal button takes you down into the deal.

Just like Alice going down into Wonderland and the Back to Movie Button restores you back to EXACTLY where you were.

Much more and better diagrams are provided in the pdf file.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

What is aaBridge ?

aaBridge is a free program for Win, Mac and Linux.    You can download it from .     I think of it as 5 different things in one.

1.  A "Jukebox" that will play .lin files.   It contains a large collection of bridge tutorial .lin files, many thanks to Hondo717, Kia and Karen10.   For a sample, from the aaBridge Welcome screen, click on  Index of Useful Lins.

2.  An after play (postmortem) Hand Analyser. If you have played on BBO you can get your hands into aaBridge see the post  How do I - get a BBO hand into aaBridge.  Now you can use the Double Analyser - see this post.
More importantly you can re-create how the hand looked to you and your partner to re-think yourself back to when that hand was being played - see this this post. A question to ask is - Now I have more time to think, would I act differently ?

3.  Learning to Count the hand - to me, if you think of aaBridge as a goose, this is the  Golden Egg. 
Inside aaBridge is a .pdf file. Can get to the file from the Welcome screen and then clicking, How to - Defend Like an Expert. The next screen gives you a button to click that will copy the .pdf to your desktop. That file includes detailed instructions and many screen shots. Think of it as a - must read.
To build your counting skills there is also 'hand distribution' training feature.  On the welcome page click on Distribution Flash Cards.      For instructions - Watch the Video.

4.    For  Novices and Beginners.  aaBridge is good for playing HUGE hands until you get bored with them.  So no more 'HUGE hand fright'.  From the Welcome screen click on - Play Bridge and Show Deal Choices.
In the right hand column is now a list of the New Deals choices select  37+  7NT
The main  Play Bridge  window is also showing.  Click the New Board  button.
You will now asked to play the hand in 7NT.  It will be easy !  When you are bored with this. Reduce the number of points you will be given by selecting a harder option.
32+  6NT  -  will produce a few difficult hands.  This is where a developing player can benefit. Look for throw-in's and simple squeezes and other end plays. Such end plays are easier to find and practice in high lever contracts where you have a lot of control.

5.  aaBridge contains (as internal lin files) all the instructions you need to write you own lin file.
To learn about lin files click on any of the books menus on the menu bar and choose the very last entry, What goes on - inside a lin file.

Finally - for New aaBridge Users
Please follow the instructions on the Welcome Page, click the   Flow   button and read all the
New user tutorial pages.