[r-t] A Ringing Puzzle
richard at ex-parrot.com
Sun May 25 11:57:16 UTC 2014
Mark Davies wrote:
> Graham writes,
>> I would just call it Horsleydown Surprise Major.
> That sounds sensible! And in fact I don't think it is technically too hard to
> classify such methods. Every bell is a hunt bell, but if we prioritise
> certain kinds of hunts (plain, treble bob etc - as the current CC Decisions
> already do) then it should fall out as a Surprise method.
It seems to me that the problem is with how the Decisions
were changed in 2002 to allow short-course methods. I
believe the main motivation was to allow Slinky to be rung
in peals of Cyclic Maximus, and the parallels to the current
situation are striking. In 2002, the Methods Committee
clearly felt that Slinky was radically different to anything
being rung on twelve, and arguably they were right.
The minimal change to support Slinky would have been to
delete the then Decision (E)A.1(a) which at that time read:
In methods with hunt bells, all the working bells do
the same work in the plain course, the number of leads
being the same as the number of working bells.
Instead they chose to introduce a new type of method called
a diffential hunters. I can see the logic behind that: the
space of methods were nicely in two orthogonal ways: hunter
vs non-hunter, differential vs non-differential; and hunters
were sub-divided into classes. It meant that Slinky was not
just a different class of method, but also a different type,
which was a more radical difference. I dare say that felt
appropriate as Slinky was quite radically different.
But the change also legitimised many things that were not so
radical, such as short-course methods (though not one-lead
methods like "Horsleydown" S Major), something that was
recognised and minuted at time. Do short-course methods
really deserve to be considered separately to ordinary
methods? In practice they are mostly rung in spliced. If I
ring a peal of spliced surprise royal, is it relevant if one
of the methods is a 'c' group method? Indeed, can I even
call such a peal 'Spliced Surprised Royal'? Could it could
as a record length of it? The Decisions do not say.
I have no strong opinion on whether or not it is appropriate
that differential hunters should require the word
'Differential' in their name. I probably wouldn't have
required it, but I can see the case for including it.
Where I think they went wrong was to regard differential
hunters as a fundamentally different type of method to
normal hunters. It really isn't: it's a relatively
insignificant attribute of the method. If the Methods
Committee were concerned that Slinky should be marked out as
an unusual method, it already was by virtue of being a
little treble place method.
This is precisely the same mistake they are making with the
quarks: falseness within the plain course is again a
relatively insignificant property for methods rung in
spliced. But methods with false plain courses are to be
considered so inimicable that they are not even methods, but
"non-method blocks". David says he hadn't noticed when he
designed them that two of the methods were false in the
plain course, and I can readily believe that. They're not
designed for their plain courses any more than Slinky was,
and so the properties of the plain course are irrelevant.
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