Backgammon Books

  Vision Laughs at Counting
With Advice to the Dicelorn

  AUTHOR: Danny Kleinman
  YEAR: 1996 (1980)
  PUBLISHER: Larry Strommen
  CITY: Los Angeles, CA
  BINDING: Softcover, spiral-bound
  PAGES: v+211
  SIZE: 28 cm high, 22 cm wide
Volume 1


     "Danny Kleinman is an American games theoretician who produced a number of excellent backgammon books in the 1980's and 1990's and is still active today. He has a slightly quirky style that is particularly evident when he assumes the persona of Mss Lonelyblots, his fictitious backgammon agony aunt.
      His two volume set Vision Laughs at Counting with Advice to the Dicelorn is a comprehensive explanation of many of backgammon's fundamentals. Some of Kleinman's analysis is very mathematical but the results have helped give a better understanding of the dynamics of the game. It is recommended reading for anyone who wishes to really understand the game."—Chris Bray, in What Colour is the Wind?


     "This book contains much sound advice on the practical aspects of backgammon play (e.g., sections on hustlers, cheaters, and chouette money management), seminal advice on handling the doubler, and even a few unprecedented mathematical characterizations of aspects of certain positions (e.g., how many pips to penalize a player for having one or more checkers on the bar). The writing is generally insightful and often very amusingly written, but not suitable as an introductory text, sometimes obsolete, and sometimes simply wrong."—John Bazigos, July 1993


     "Technical articles on general subjects are interspersed with a format of letters to Miss Lonelyblots, the ever-faithful counselor to the "Dorn-Lorn". The books are not entirely technical but address the tricky subject of mental attitude of how to approach the game. In addition, they detail many cheating techniques in order to alert the unwary player to these pitfalls."—Butch Meese, January 1984


     "Seminal work on match play, money play, doubling cube, races, and more. His analyses are often more mathematical than the average reader can handle, but the layperson with math aptitude shouldn't be fazed. He does the important work of formulating the right problems the right way, where many others couldn't.
      His analyses often lack world-class insight. In particular, his middle-game intuition seems less than world-class. But this is more than made up for by the wealth of information. Kleinman is a subtle thinker and a meticulous analyst of the countable. His stuff is often uproariously funny, but sometimes one gets impatient trying to filter out what's relevant to the practical player from the humor."—Marty Storer, May 1992


     "The two volume Vision Laughs at Counting is my favourite backgammon book. Kleinman is arguably the most knowledgable deep theoretician of the game, and his dynamic prose never fails to keep the reader entertained. At $80 for the set, Kleinman's wisdom doesn't come cheap, but money players will soon find that their investment is recovered many times over, from careful perusal of the text.
      Kleinman's forte is chouette play and much of the first volume focuses on chouette strategy and tactics; including the mechanics of play and the deeper psychology of the game and money management. Lessons are reinforced in humorous vignettes which take the form of letters to Miss Lonely Blots (Kleinman's alter-ego).
      Kleinman is noted for his mathematical genius, and has a gift for putting a number to every conceivable concept of the game. The second volume contains extensive content on cube theory with reference to money games, chouette and tournament matches, amply illustrated with match equity tables, gammon price tables, and lots of mathematical formulae."—Mark Driver, December 2001

[Continued from Volume 1.]

The Doubling Cube and Football Fields
Settlements and Fracture-Points
Letter from Acepoint Alice
The Cube Equations
Symmetry, Marginal Utility, and the Cube
The Care and Feeding of the Doubling Cube
Letter from Loche Smith
Letter from Peter Perseptiff
Simplified Doubling Guidelines
Letter from Timothy Tightcube
Dead Cube in a Holding Game
The Cube Provocation Play
Five Easy Pips

Letter from Seymour Sikologist
Backgammon Tournament Freebies
Letter from Danny Doop
Topsy Turvy Doubling Strategy
The Cooke Criterion
Letter from Quincy Cubeturner
Putting the Match on the Line
Letter from William Worldbeater
The Big Cube Approximation
Even the Experts Get Lazy
Behind the Eight Cube
Carol and the Four-Cube
A scoreboard Pass
Ricky's Ruse and Pseudo-Freeman Coups
The Price of Gammons
Cubeophrenia With Gammicidal Tendencies
The Biased Cube in the 3 Point Match
The Plain-Game Criterion in a 4 Point Match
Letter from Charlie Clozout
Cube Bias and the 4 Point Match
Match-Equities into Take-Points

A Case of Impulse Versus Analysis
Backgammon as a Problem in Mathematics
Empiricism Versus Rationalism in Backgammon
The Kleinman Scale
Captain, Crew and Cube in Chouettes
The Double-Sixes Wager
Alan Martin and the Fibonacci Numbers
The Prime Leaping Problem
Letter from Fearful Freddie

New Backgammon Rules
The Ideas Behind the New Backgammon Rules
Tandem Backgammon
Tag-Team Doubles
Shpper's Manual for Backgammon Tournaments
Letter from Chris Kraftie
Ah, Calcutta!

Can't Anybody Think of a Polite Way to Say "Pigeon"?
The Hardest Luck Story of All
The Compleat Dicist
Proofs of the Existence of Pipcelot
The Education of Jack Gammon

The Alan Martin Quiz
The Hersch Malamud Quiz
The Danny Kleinman Quiz
The Patti Medford Quiz
Confidential ... Please Encrypt Reply
The Roger Olson Quiz
The Ricky Sax Quiz
The Byron Korn Quiz
The Bill Granoff Quiz
The Molly Holmes Quiz
The Danny Romm Quiz
The Fifi Quiz
The Barclay Cooke Quiz

   Backgammon: Costa Rica 1994
Final Match: Mike Senkiewicz vs. Mike Svobodny from the Third Tournament of the Americas
Antonio Ortega, Mario Madrigal, Danny Kleinman
1996: Editorama, San Jose, Costa Rica
   Meanwhile, Back at the Chouette
Danny Kleinman
1996: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   Wonderful World of Backgammon
Danny Kleinman
1996: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   Cubes and Gammons Near the End of a Match
Antonio Ortega, Danny Kleinman
1997: Editorama, San Jose, Costa Rica
   Is There Life After Backgammon?
Danny Kleinman
1997: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   Jerry Grandell: His most important matches
Antonio Ortega, Danny Kleinman
1999: Editorama, S.A., San Jose, Costa Rica
   Double-Sixes from the Bar
Danny Kleinman
1999: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   How Can I Keep From Dancing
Danny Kleinman
1999: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   The Dice Conquer All
Danny Kleinman
1999: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   Backgammon With the Giants: Neil Kazaross
Antonio Ortega, Danny Kleinman
2001: Editorama, S.A., San Jose, Costa Rica
   How Little We Know About Backgammon
Danny Kleinman
2001: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   The Other Side of Midnight
Danny Kleinman
2002: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   But Only the Hogs Win Backgammons
"The bulls sometimes win, and the bears sometimes win ..."
Danny Kleinman
2002: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   A Backgammon Book for Gabriel
Danny Kleinman
2003: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA
   Long Road to Gammon
Danny Kleinman
2003: Larry Strommen, Los Angeles, CA

    Recommended Reading
  Where to Buy Books
    Picture Gallery
  List of Books by Author

Copyright © 1996-2016 by Tom Keith

Return to : Backgammon Galore : Books