Ted's Bridge World Table Guide Cards
for Rotary Movements

A movement that is "rotary" in nature — that is, a one-winner design such that the moving pairs follow each other around the room in an uninterrupted pattern — lends itself to the use of table guide cards, which eliminate the necessity of providing said instructions in another way.  The so-called Howell movements and some Individual and Team arrangements fall into this category.

Several vendors sell guide cards for the Howells and Individuals adopted long ago as "standard" by the ACBL (and subsequently by other organizations as a matter of convenience).  Because I am not trying to supplant the printing industry, most such schedules are not featured here.  What you will find are some original creations that provide one or more of the following benefits:

The downloadable file contains the data for all the movements; simply discard the ones you don't wish to use.  The PDF files enable easy printing of guide cards and master sheets on standard 8½×11 paper.  The other files are compatible with the ACBL Score program.  Just copy the .MOV files into your \ACBLSCOR\MOV folder and the .IND files into the \ACBLSCOR\IND folder.  When you later specify External Movement during a game setup, they will show up on the list, easily identifiable by the hyphens in their names.

The filenames reflect the number of tables (pairs) or players (individuals) and the number of rounds.  No more information can be included, because ABCLscore has a limitation on the length of a filename.  When selecting a movement during a game setup, however, more details are available on the computer screen.

Download:   Movements.zip     Trust me! no viruses

Click on the download to extract the game file.  Place it anywhere on your hard disk, and create a shortcut to it if you like.  No other setup is required, and no other files will be created.



These movements have long been out of favor; but they can come in handy for home games or those times when most of your club's clientele is trapped in a snowstorm.



Ideally, a rotary movement is set up such that the the tables are bunched together as closely as possible with respect to the board sets, and the boards go out of play from Table-1 to a bye-stand.  That is the natural order of things.  Not all movements can be so well-organized, however.  The 4-table Howell requires a pair of bye-stands, and certain others need even more.

The well-known Howell and Individual schedules have been around since the early days of duplicate; unfortunately, those same original designs are being used to this day even though better setups are available in many cases.  For example, the ACBL adopted a 4-table configuration that starts with board sets 1-4-6-7,  even though a less confusing and more intuitive 1-2-3-5 matrix was known at the time.

Similarly, the standard 6-table complete Howell utilizes no fewer than four bye-stands, even though only two are needed.  It didn't have to be that way, because creating rotary movements simply isn't that difficult.  Admittedly, a computer is very helpful in this regard.


Most directors who opt for a Howell movement expect it to provide a more equitable game, in that the pairs compete against each other for the matchpoints to some extent; unfortunately, that is not always the case.  Ideally, every pair would play, as nearly as possible, half the boards in the same direction as every other pair and half the boards in the opposite direction.  Of all movements analyzed, only four were found to be capable of perfect balance — the complete Howells for 4 tables and 6 tables, plus the complete Individuals for 8 players and 12 players.

The other complete Howells are reasonably and symmetrically balanced.  The so-called three-quarter movements, though — curtailed such that not all pairs meet — are mathematically flawed; and the arrow-switching scheme for the stationary pairs further corrupts the purity of the matrix.  Under these conditions, programming even a palatable configuration is problematical.  In particular, the standard Howell for 6 tables, 9 rounds is so utterly unfair to certain pairs that it should have been replaced seventy years ago.

The ACBL Score program has a built-in feature for designing virtually any movement of one's desire.  For those that I tested, however, player balances ranged from mediocre to horrid; in fact, a couple of them are worse than the dreaded 6-table Howell.  The program will generate a mathematically workable schedule all right; but no coding has been spared to select a matrix that is even remotely equitable.  Additionally, the usage of any of those movements would entail the printing of personal guide cards.

Now you don't have to do that, however, because new and improved table guide cards are available right here at Ted's World.  For every schedule posted, all possible configurations have been tested and the fairest available option has been selected.  Enjoy.

The posting of other movements would be considered upon request.

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