Jack Plays Against Human Opponents

In the spring of 2005 Jack challenged various top Dutch players. The matches are all played and we reported on these very interesting matches in several instalments.
Reports were be published in Dutch IMP-bridge magazine first. The last episode appeared in the February 2006 issue.

1. The Computer Plays Bridge, I Don't Know Whether to Laugh or Cry - July 2005
2. Computer Bridge 2; World Champion Jack in Action - August 2005
3. Computer Bridge 3; World Champion Jack in Action - October 2005
4. Computer Bridge 4: Jack Just Isn't Human - February 2006

Setup of the matches

To be able to gauge Jack's playing strength objectively, the Jack team organized several matches against human opponents. In April and May of 2005, Jack played 28-board matches against seven strong pairs. All but the first of the following pairs play in the highest echelons of Dutch bridge, some having represented the Netherlands in European and World Championships.

Just vd Kam-Hanneke Kreijns
Erik Janssen-Jeroen Top
Jan van Cleeff-Vincent Kroes
Paul Felten-Erik van Valen
Ton Bakkeren-Huub Bertens
Vincent Ramondt-Berry Westra
Bart Nab-Gert Jan Paulissen

To obtain a wide variety of deals for analysis, we had Jack play a different set of boards against each pair, choosing randomly from boards played in First Division (the second highest Dutch league) competition during the 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 seasons. We scored the deals at 'Instant IMPS' in order to get results quickly.

To simulate normal human playing conditions, we had two assistants sit at the bridge table and make the calls and plays that Jack indicated on the computer screen.