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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Max Maven's Contimental. » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Drewmcadam
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Ooops - got a problem with that... I was caught out: Cyprus, Sicily, Malta and Iceland are also in Europe! And if you go for Mainland Europe, there’s also Andorra to take into consideration. Anybody fancy re-writing the crib sheet?
Martino
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Don't forget Greece! I might just do a search on the net to find a bit of software to correct these "errors"! Anyone else found more glaring omissions. Why not email Max and tell him!
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Michael Peterson
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Hmmmmmmm, I knew there was a reason I don't do that one. Smile

As soon as someone rewrites the crib, let me know Smile


Smile
magiker
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I have never had a problem with that except that one time a women told me the country when I was on the second letter.
I have performed this about six times, but not performed it within the last six months.
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Andy Leviss
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Drew,
Do an archive search in "The EYE" now that you're a member - we discussed this quite in-depth the last few weeks Smile

--A
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saglaser
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I've done it once so I can claim 100% success in all the times I've performed it without ever running into problems Smile

Of course, know I realize how fortunate I was that the participant selected Italy instead of Sicily.

If anybody has a revised crib, put me on the list of those who'd love a copy.
DoctorAmazo
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Keep in mind he tells them to think of a "place you might like to visit". I think that narrows it down to the more well-known countries. I'll concede that Greece IS a problem, tho.

I am currently working on an Excel spreadsheet that will generate a cribsheet for any list of words/names. (It's much harder than I thought originally!)
Andy Leviss
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Doc Amazo,
If you do figure it out, please let us know... I'm quite intrigued in learning how to go about coaxing a computer to do it, as I've done it by hand and can't figure an easy computer based "formula".

That said, there is already a freeware program called "Peter's Progressive Anagram Maker". If you can't find it online, let me know and I'll post it when I get home and am on my computer (I'm at a friend's right now.) I'd still encourage you to continue with yours, though, because it's quite possible yours will turn out different sequences than Peter's, and I'm not always happy with Peter's (they often require 2-4 "no" responses to determine the choice, even when a list that only requires one "no" can be devised by hand if one takes the time).
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DoctorAmazo
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Andy--

I decided to get an exhaustive list of European countries and do it "right". Now I see why Max "ignored" the less popular ones!

It can't be done in 2 tiers (2 "no"s). I'm still gonna play around with defining the algorithm, though. (By the time I get it right, the Balkan countries will have all changed names again anyhow!) Smile
Confusion808
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I used to perform Contimental a lot. Something that always bugged me about the system was that it included Litchenstien but not Greece or Sicily!. Has anyone actually had Litchenstien come up yet?. I got around this by blowing the missing countries out of the water at an early stage.
"Name any country In Europe such as Greece,
Sicily etc...". From my experience this phrasing tended to push them towards Italy, Spain, or France (which are probably the most popular choices anyway). Another flaw I found with Contimental is that you have to go pretty far down the list before you get to the popular choices, whereas you could get Litchenstien on your second reply!. Could the order be changed or would this mess up the system? Smile
Andy Leviss
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Nope, the order can't be changed without messing it up. As for having to call off a long string of letters before getting to the hit, I think it works better that way. See my Visions column that'll go up towards the end of this weekend:
http://www.online-visions.com/sharedthoughts

A part of the February column will be dealing with this sort of effect and how (or how not) to present it. As soon as I sign offline I'm going to put the finishing touches on it Smile
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Drewmcadam
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Confusion,

Nice idea, getting rid of the problem ones by naming them in the run up to the effect... Kind of like Banachek's name a simple geometric shape like a aquare - nobody is going to name the square after that... Nice thinking, I think you may just have found the solution there, matey!

I LIKE going further down the list, it convinces the spec that you really are getting the letters that are dancing around before their eyes.
Confusion808
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But Drew, haven't you had the experience when You have hit and missed 4 letter like
A S P N?. At this point the spectators know that the country is S P A I N before you even finish getting the whole string of letters!. I feel that if the spectator can figure out the country before you can, that the effect will not be impressive as the word has been anticipated. If the spectator can get the country by elimination, then it only makes sense that the performer can too. What do you think? Smile
Drewmcadam
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The first time I saw this performed, the spec actually did select Spain… and that’s why it worked so well. In my opinion, Spain is the best one they can come up with. Remember, you’re not “selling” this as being an exercise in elimination, you’re “selling” it as mind reading. Presented correctly, using the “jumbled lettering” scam, with a lot of "You’re visualising the letter A… correct?" And N, you can see the letter N… Excellent, that was clear… No D... hang on, you’re right, it’s the P again… Please, visualise it as brightly and as clearly as you can… and so on

<<I feel that if the spectator can figure out the country before you can, that the effect will not be impressive as the word has been anticipated.>>

On the contrary, if the spectators are “getting it” they’re thinking… Oh, my God, he can really do it. I like Max’s “twist” when he asks, “What country are you thinking of?” (Spain). He looks at what he’s written and looks crestfallen… “Not Switzerland, then?”

There is a moment of confusion, the spec’s are thinking, Hang on, it COULD have been Switzerland, and before they have time to recover, Max turns the board around and says: “Oh well, let’s go to SPAIN, then!”

Luverly!
fordkross
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There are a number of problems with linking anagrams in general and Contimental in particular. First most people can't spell. Second the method is obvious to many. Our audiences contain bright people. Contimental contains grey areas as to which countries. Save these effects for your magic club
from
Ford
Scott F. Guinn
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I disagree. There are many people who know (or at least suspect) that one of the rings in a linking ring routine has a gap in it. Yet, I am able to entertain and fool them with it, and I use their assumptions against them when I lead them to believe this is the case and then "prove" that it isn't!

The same is true with this type of routine. If you are just calling out letters as though you are playing Wheel of Fortune ("Is there a "t," Pat?"), then in point of fact, you'll be fooling no one. But if you are "pulling" the letters out of the spec's brain with great effort--after all, if you could really do it, it would be very difficult, right?--and great showmanship, then this routine and others like it can be VERY effective.

I saw Maven perform this routine for an audience of laymen at Cactus Pete's in Jackpot, Nevada. It absolutely KILLED! People were gasping and turning to each other shouting, "No way!"

What it boils doen to is this: if you don't believe in the effect, it won't play for you at all. If you believe in it and present it properly, the audinece will be stunned. End of story.

PS- I have an "out" for those times when Greece or Sicily is chosen (never had Iceland, Andora or Malta chosen--I don't think most people in the states even know Malta or Andora exist, and they think Iceland is part of Canada!) I have a large opaque envelope that has been in plain view the entire show. Inside is a piece of cardstock. On one side is written Greece, on the other, Sicily. When they name one of these countries, I crumple up the paper I'm holding and say, "Well, I can't be right ALL the time!" Then as they start to walk to their seat I stop them and ask them to bring me the envelope. I say, "I CAN'T be right all the time!" Then as I slowly remove the card with the correct side showing, "But I was THIS time!"

Everyone thinks the whole "getting the letters" thing was a farce, and that I somehow knew all along which country would be chosen.

Works for me!
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Andy Leviss
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Just a note for those interested--my column, including the "mini-rant" on progressive anagram effects, is now up at Visions at http://www.online-visions.com/sharedthoughts
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
Drewmcadam
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Well, I started this thread, and this looks like a good place to finish it – though the last word definitely goes to Mr Leviss for his excellent analysis of branching anagrams and the presentation thereof in his Things Are Progressing Nicely piece (see above for link.) Andy, you talk a lot of sense, my man.

And don’t miss the needle-tipped point at the bottom regarding spectators versus participants. Darn! All this time and I should have spotted that one myself!
Bambaladam
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I have a great out for when Sicily is chosen:

"No, think of a country, not a PART of a country!"

That leaves you with Greece in the envelope and you can hand out your prediction for examination.

Andorra, Cyprus, Malta and Iceland cause more trouble as they actually ARE countries.

/bamba

Don't have a solutíon for them.
Marduke Kurios
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I have asked my participant to think of any larger country in Western Europe. Stay away from the Channel Islands as they're too easy for me to get. This works for me. (BTW - This seems to narrow the field a lot more and the audience is still amazed) The only time it hasn't worked was when the person picked 'Russia'. Smile Go figure.
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