[r-t] Opinions sought

Richard Johnston johnstonrh at rhj.org.uk
Fri Jan 25 13:04:38 GMT 2019

Ian McCulloch:
> On Thu, 24 Jan 2019, Austin Paul wrote:
> >       We considered using the simplest definition, which is that any
> multi-method performance is spliced -- effectively applying the higher
> stage definition to all stages.  (And it's invariant under rotation.) 
> But this
> >       would be a big change to current practice, given many peals of 7
> Minor and similar are rung that are not described as spliced today, and it
> would likely be mostly ignored.
> > 
> > 
> > So what's wrong with that? Keeping this arbitrary distinction between
> mixed and spliced seems to be giving unfair weight to the 'historical'
> component. Simplicity and permissiveness to me suggest we should abandon;
> are there any
> > other reasons for keeping it?
> I think you've got this the wrong way around: for "most" ringers I suspect
> there is a very big difference between "mixed" and "spliced", with "mixed"
> meaning all changes of method occur at rounds, and "spliced" meaning 
> "learn all the starts thoroughly, and be prepared!".  For almost all 
> ringers, this is the meaningful distinction between mixed and spliced.
> It was rather a surprise to me to discover in this discussion that 
> historically "spliced" had a wider meaning, and some quarter peal 
> compositions of minor that I would have regarded as "mixed" are (by the 
> historical definition) actually spliced, despite all changes of method 
> occuring at rounds.  It is possible that I've called such a composition -
> I'll have to go back and check as it never occured to me that such a thing
> might actually be described as "spliced".
> > Imo, permissiveness means the decisions should suggest that the
> guidelines determine what may be called spliced and not what must. This
> performance doesn't even have 'spliced' in the title:
> > https://bb.ringingworld.co.uk/view.php?id=1267756.
> > If a peal of minor is listed as spliced and has 6 c.o.m, the composition
> details will likely indicate what was rung.
> Well, maybe for some ringers, but I think many ringers regard "7 methods
> minor" and "spliced minor" as very different things, and if I was 
> told a peal was to be "spliced minor" I'd be rather disappointed if the 
> composition on the day turned out to be 7x720's with 6 changes of
> method.
> Conversely, I've met many ringers who would be fine ringing "mixed" but 
> would balk at the idea of "spliced" (using the definition of "mixed" == 
> all changes of method at rounds - whether it actually makes round block 
> extents or not is irrelevant in this case).  I think if one said "spliced,
> but all changes of method will be at rounds" you'd get a funny look from
> most ringers.
> > 
> > I feel like the distinction only exists to disappoint ringers who ring
> their first multi-method quarter peal of doubles only to find out
> afterwards that it doesn't count as 'spliced'. So the word 'mixed' is
> added to alleviate
> > their spirits.
> Has this ever happened to anyone?  Certainly at the towers I'm familiar 
> with such confusion is unheard-of.

I agree with all Ian says.  

"Spliced" is used in normal practice to denote a composition where at 
least some changes of method do not happen at rounds, and in the case 
of peals on 6 or less all the component extents are "spliced" within 
this meaning.  

The underlying idea of denoting it "spliced", is that spliced is 
harder because you need to know more place bells than the one you 
started the peal with.

Many advanced ringers don't seem to appreciate what makes something 
harder for people learning, and hence why these names arose, to 
signify the fact.

It is the weird "spliced" exceptions of the past that are the 
anomolies, and as such they can be regarded as historical anomolies, 
just as we accept that some methods (like Ipswich) have anomolous 
extensions for historical reasons.

Richard Johnston

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