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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » All in the cards » » Explain self-working (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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sami-herra
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I would suggest the following definition:

"Any trick you could teach to my grandmother in less than fifteen minutes."

-Sami
Daegs
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I disagree... I think self working effects can be REALLY REALLY HARD to learn and still be self working.

I think we need to distance ourselves from this "self working = easy or simple effects" and get to the real definition which is that they are self working.
Hushai
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Definitions:
Self-working card trick: one that does not use sleight of hand.
Sleight of hand card trick: one that is not self-working.
:)
Hushai
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Another thought, in addition to my tongue-in-cheek one above: there is a type of trick (not all of them card tricks) in which, if a spectator watches VERY CAREFULLY and then attempts the same thing the magician did, he/she will be able to duplicate it -- nothing is hidden from the viewer. The 21-Card Trick might be an example, depending on the exact handling. I always think of the Linking Paper Clips, where the clips are attached to a dollar bill in a precise way and then they link up, as another example. I call these WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) tricks. I don't think ALL tricks we would be inclined to call "self-working" are WYSIWYG tricks. Some self-working tricks involve some sneaky actions taken out of the view and knowledge of the spectator -- WYSIWYG's don't.
S2000magician
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Would Daryl's Dream a Card, Any Card qualify?

How about Fogel's Triple Prediction?

Or Lorayne's Lazy Man's Card Trick?

Or Vernon's Trick that Cannot be Explained?

What about Lorayne's Calculated Risk?
MagicMarker
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Einstein's Theory of Relativity:
Everything is relative to your perspective of it.

If you are selling magic tricks, they are all self working and require no skill.

If you just bought one and perform it, it's not self working and requires a lot of skill.

-Richard
alondon
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The best I have seen is "Scarne On Card Tricks" He even performed these on the Tonight Show.
easy and effective
matt.magicman
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Does Vernon's Trick that Cannot be Explained
use a complete stacked deck?
thanks
matt wainwright
Jaz
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Quote:
On 2008-05-23 16:38, matt.magicman wrote:
Does Vernon's Trick that Cannot be Explained
use a complete stacked deck?
thanks
matt wainwright


No stack at all.
Mick Ayres
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Although 'self-working' is a term used by magicians to imply ease-of-handling, I personally don't believe there is such an effect.

In a literal sense, if a card trick was TRULY self-working...wouldn't you put the pack on the table then step back and watch as the deck offered a card to be chosen and returned, shuffled itself and then revealed the selection somehow?

For this reason, I believe it was Steve Beam who appropriately coined the far more accurate phrase: "Semi-Automatic" Card Tricks.

Works for me. But then...I am biased about those books of his.

Best,
Mick
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tltq
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I argee with Daegs about the no secret actions. I see things like this

Self-working trick: no manipulative skill required and no secrets actions

What about tricks that require no manipulative skill but include secrets actions
I refer to them as being sleightless without being self-working and just called them sleightless or sleight free

A self-working trick is always sleightless but a sleightless trick is not necessarily self-working
Jaz
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... and I have to agree with Mr. Ayres that most so called self working tricks should be called 'semi-automatic'.
Yes, there are a few that don't require simple, secret actions but not many.
Open Traveller
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A "self-working trick" is one in which one can set the deck of cards on the table and walk away.

Which, by the way, more of us should do more often.

To the one who cited "Sam the Bellhop" a couple of years ago, that's one of the hardest tricks to do, man. Ever.
Open Traveller
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Quote:
On 2006-06-26 20:13, S2000magician wrote:
Would Daryl's Dream a Card, Any Card qualify?

How about Fogel's Triple Prediction?

Or Lorayne's Lazy Man's Card Trick?

Or Vernon's Trick that Cannot be Explained?

What about Lorayne's Calculated Risk?


I'm with you (I think). All of these effects use no sleight of hand, yet they're incredibly difficult to do, requiring much practice, preparation and attention to detail.

The "self-worker" only exists if you're working on a level where you have less stake in your outcomes.
Hushai
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Quote:
On 2008-08-09 17:03, Open Traveller wrote:
A "self-working trick" is one in which one can set the deck of cards on the table and walk away.


I saw a consumer's review once on Amazon.com or somewhere of one of Karl Fulves's "Self-working Card Tricks" books. The reviewer complained (in all seriousness, apparently) that these tricks were not "self-working" at all -- YOU had to do something: hold the deck, offer it to a spectator, tell them what they had to do, etc.
DomKabala
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If you look up "self working" in the dictionary you'll be hardpressed if you can find a definition. You will find the word "self" combined with other nouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, etc. "Self winding" and "self worth" are the only ones that begin in "W".

So IMHO Self-working pertains only to magic and it means magic effects that require essentially no skill, can be learned in a few minutes, and many self-working tricks are quite baffling and entertaining.

This is not to say that self-working tricks do not require practice. Far from it! Any magic trick, regardless of how easy, should be scripted and repeatedly practiced for smooth and compelling presentation. But with a self-working trick, the performer can concentrate on entertaining the audience, rather than worry that a particular sleight, misdirection, or tricky bit of business will reveal the modus operandi.

All this has been said and I believe that "self working" is a misnomer, but you have to call this category of card magic something...

Cardamagically,
Dom.
:) Smile
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captainsmiffy
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I humbly submit my trick called 'Up the Ante' because it can -and does - meet all of your definitions given above. Particularly liked Mick Ayres definition that a true self-working effect is one where the deck is placed on the table and it shuffles itself and offers a card....etc Well, 'Up the Ante' is a gambling effect whereby that almost happens (I wont let on but it is actually the spectator who shuffles the deck!)- the performer never touches the deck and yet proposes more and more incredible bets on the outcome of the spectators shuffle. No sleights whatsoever and an ordinary deck which can be used prior to this effect on a myriad of other tricks. See the thread in Workers and Dominic Reyes post. Out shortly via the Merchant of Magic. (Demo in thread only gives the merest 'flavour' of the effect but you'll like it!)
Have you tried 'Up The Ante' yet?? The ultimate gambling demo....a self-working wonder! See the reviews here on the cafe.
gphrenol
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One group of tricks that could be called self working are those where over a telephone, written media, or electronic media, instructions can be provided for using normal things that the person has and the trick amazes them.
DomKabala
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I like Peter Duffie's way of using the term "Effortless" card tricks, etc...

Cardamagically,
Dom Smile Smile
We don't stop playing when we grow old...we grow old when we stop playing.

God is enough, let go, let God. Gal 2:20

"Anything of value is not easily attained and those things which are easily attained are not of lasting value."



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Chessmann
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Quote:
On 2006-05-09 22:57, airship wrote:
Here's what Fulves says in the Introduction to 'More Self-Working Card Tricks':
Quote:
The intent here is the same as in the earlier book, to present some of the best contemporary thinking on self-working card tricks while avoiding all sleights, even rudimentary moves like the Hindu Shuffle. Tricks invonving complex setups or special apparatus have been avoided.

So there you go.


I don't think here that Fulves was trying to provide an encompassing definition of the term "self working", rather stating the kind of self-working effects he was including in his book. Of course, I am biased, believing that a Hindu shuffle, for example, is perfectly in line within a trick labelled self-working.
My ex-cat was named "Muffin". "Vomit" would be a better name for her. AKA "The Evil Ball of Fur".
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