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Profile of Caliban
On 2008-07-19 05:19, The Amazing Noobini wrote:
Just after I posted yesterday I went out to a bar to have tea and read Darwin Ortiz' Strong Magic. On one of the first pages I read he says that only magicians think that finding a card that is merely named is stronger than finding one that has been physically selected. Whereas in reality it is weaker to the spectators. If they have named the card they will think (and I'm paraphrasing) "sure you found it, I told you what card it was".

I would disagree with Darwin Ortiz on that point. I think it was Michael Close who pointed out that Darwin's argument can be disproven in two words - Invisible Deck. The ID is one of the strongest effects on a lay person and it begins with a card being named. If the spectator names a card and you can produce it without appearing look for it - it's one of the strongest things you can do with a pack of cards.
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Profile of Cain
Not trying to cherry-pick here, but are there any routines apart from "Ackerman's Opener" that ends in NDO? I agree that NDO ending is one of the most, if not the most powerful endings to card magic.

Ackerman's Opener does not end in NDO. Ackerman's Opener concludes with all the cards grouped by value (i.e., broken up into fours-of-a-kind in no particular order). NDO order and four-of-a-kind were the two built-in closers that weighed heavily on my mind when deciding upon a stack.

Last night I was hangin' out doin' some impromptu card tricks at a party. Not long after I finished showing some people a few things, I began openly sorting the cards into NDO by myself on the couch. Someone who had watched reactions from afar came over, we chit-chatted and she asked what I was doing. I had thought of this before, awhile ago, rehearsed it, but never used the following excuse: "I think I'm missing a card" (without looking up). The lie came almost too easily, and was perhaps facilitated by the fact that, as strange luck would have it, I had accidentally left the 5D in the card box! I was genuinely surprised when I found it ("oh, there it is"), continued to chit chat, gave the deck a couple faros, put the pack down, talked, false over-hand, more lazy faros, and then did a couple things with the stack. Now, I'm not sure I would openly organize a pack and then 10 or 12 minutes later conclude by returning to NDO. While tempting, the connection seems too obvious for an intelligent person, or group especially, but this little ruse is one rather straight-forward (and probably obvious) way of getting into this particular memorized stack in a casual environment.
Ellusionst discussing the Arcane Playing cards: "Michaelangelo took four years to create the Sistine Chapel masterpiece... these took five."

Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes: "You know Einstein got bad grades as a kid? Well, mine are even worse!"
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Profile of Cohiba
Just wanted to say that this is a great thread, with some very intelligent thoughts posted. Thanks to all involved!

A thought or two of my own, in random order:

1 - Tamariz (in Mnemonica) has a lot of information and effects that you can do with only a partial stack (such as half the stack). If you can arrange the "blockbusters" to only mess up half the deck, there may be ideas of interest to you there.

2 - The problem being discussed is a great reason to exercise your creativity and originality. For example, I came up with an Ambitious card routine that maintains full deck order (which my impromptu mainstay version did not do). I find that this type of creativity is much easier to succeed at (having a definite goal in mind with various tools at your disposal) in contrast to "inventing a new effect" - which seems to be what usually comes to mind when thinking about creativity. In doing this, I added an "impromptu" effect to my MD repertoire. The mem-deck also can strengthen certain impromptu routines (some mentioned above), which can become part of your mem-deck sets.

Finally, I think Cain and some others have made a good point in saying that you don't want the MD to become a handicap because you don't want to destroy it. I've fallen into that trap myself, holding out on a killer ending thinking that "I might need the stack later". My impromptu deck work is stronger than a lot of the "retain the order" MD effects that are out there. Be careful here.
Deck switches are pretty easy to get away with, and make a lot of sense when performing one set where reset isn't a problem. If you're doing something like table hopping, choose a couple of strong routines that don't destroy the order, utilize switches, and save the blockbuster for a table where you think it makes the most sense.
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