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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » The Solution - The Easiest, Fastest Memorized Deck Ever - by Atlas Brookings and Raven Gairloch (53 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Atlas
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Quote:
On Nov 5, 2015, ddyment wrote:
The downside of this approach is that nobody has ever figured out a way to do this without having a goodly number of cards that are exceptions to the algorithm (making it more difficult to acquire and easier to forget from lack of use).


I actually think we've cracked this. There are only 8 true exceptions to be memorized, and because of how things have worked out, the memorization is quite simple and straightforward.

Quote:
On Nov 5, 2015, ddyment wrote:
So, as with most things, there is no "best": classical mnemonics-based and rule-based stacks have their advantages as well. No solution does everything well. It's really important to figure out what your personal needs/goals happen to be, and choose a solution that best matches same.


I fully agree - it all depends on what you want to do with your deck. In my original post, our aim was to have a deck which could be memorized very quickly and look well enough mixed to let someone else handle it without worrying at all. You won't be using it for a bunch of poker effects, or for aces routines, but it is an excellent fit for the types of things a mentalist would perform.

On another note, the books have mostly all shipped - thanks to all those who purchased one. I know they've begun to land on doorsteps all over the world, so if you've ordered one, keep an eye peeled. It should be with you soon.

Best,

Atlas
mtgoldstein
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I can hardly wait!!! I had just started the memorization process on the Aronson with the plan to have it down cold by Dec 31 but put it all on hold until The Solution came out.
doriancaudal
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Quote:
On Nov 6, 2015, mtgoldstein wrote:
I can hardly wait!!! I had just started the memorization process on the Aronson with the plan to have it down cold by Dec 31 but put it all on hold until The Solution came out.


You won't be disappointed by The Solution ! It's a really nice stack.
Hands-off ACAAN - freely chosen card and number : http://doriancaudal.wix.com/miracaan
Chris K
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Quote:
On Nov 3, 2015, ddyment wrote:
Again, it would be particularly helpful if those who review this book could let us know just how long it took them to memorize the stack (exception cards and all) to the point where they could do it reliably in public.

Incidentally, I have much (mostly good) to say about the value of algorithmic stacks in my essay on the topic of full-deck stacks.



I'll do this when I receive it, Doug. As always, I enjoy your writings, thanks for sharing.

Lem
roblane
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Is this hitting UK mail boxes yet?
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WooverM
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This sounds really good Atlas, good luck with the release.

For those that had the chance to test this stack out already I'd love your help with this question: Without knowing what number or what card in advance, can you easily and without hesitation calculate what card will be at a called for number(like in a memorized stack)?
Woover
Gairloch
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Quote:
On Nov 7, 2015, WooverM wrote:
This sounds really good Atlas, good luck with the release.

For those that had the chance to test this stack out already I'd love your help with this question: Without knowing what number or what card in advance, can you easily and without hesitation calculate what card will be at a called for number(like in a memorized stack)?


Hey, good question. You can instantly know the position of any card named in the deck without hesitation I.e. You will know what number the card lies at given a card. And the opposite is true, given a number you can instantly tell them what card is at that position. Works like a classic memory deck but much easier to memorise and work with.

Raven
WooverM
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Quote:
On Nov 8, 2015, Gairloch wrote:
...given a number you can instantly tell them what card is at that position...

From seeing the stack's picture and the thread it was not clear to me whether the number/card calculation is just as fast as the card/number calculation,Thank you very much Raven for clearing that up for me.
Woover
Atlas
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Quote:
On Nov 8, 2015, WooverM wrote:
Quote:
On Nov 8, 2015, Gairloch wrote:
...given a number you can instantly tell them what card is at that position...

From seeing the stack's picture and the thread it was not clear to me whether the number/card calculation is just as fast as the card/number calculation,Thank you very much Raven for clearing that up for me.


Sorry I didn't get to this sooner - yes, Raven is right. It is quick, you just kind of reverse the process. But honestly, it is REALLY easy to properly memorize this deck. Put the deck together around four times and you'll most probably find that you've got it down.

Best,

Atlas
Daren
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Anyone in the UK received theirs yet?
Atlas
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Quote:
On Nov 9, 2015, Daren wrote:
Anyone in the UK received theirs yet?


Hi Daren,

I know some have started landing here - I'm sure yours will be here soon as well.

Best,

Atlas
Chris K
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Received this last night (I live in the SF Bay Area, USA). As such, I don't feel like I can make any conclusive statements until I have a chance to play with it for a few weeks but my first impressions are below.

Book itself: Same type of format as The Crusade - A Mind Reader's ACAAN by Andrew Brown and Atlas Brookings. I like this size of book. I have a special shelf in the family room that has stuff like this, the PS series, Doug Dyment's booklets, Dear Mr Fantasy, Naked Mentalism, Applesauce (to give you an idea of size). It's a fun shelf. The bigger books are great but those go in the big bookshelves in the back room.

Writing: Pretty clear. One problem I did have (and had to reread several times before giving up and just looking at the list) was 2 cards that broke a certain rule and went into (paraphrasing since don't have book in front of me) "into first available slot" or something like that. Since not all the rules had been shared by then, I kept feeling like I was missing something with that phrasing. Since nobody else has brought it up, it must be me but this is my post about first impressions, so there you go.

Stack: There's a picture of the stack that you can go look at. At Doug mentioned, some people may *think* they know how it's put together and they *may* be right but if you look at the stack as trying to look random, you can make your own conclusions. My conclusions looking at the stack and what possible issues only changed slightly once I knew how the stack was put together. Ok, that sounds vague and I apologize but the main point is: the main issues I have with the stack not looking random weren't all that apparent until I know how the stack worked. That means it's good and I'm using magician think.

Ease of memorization: Tough to say this so quickly after receiving this to be honest. What I will say is that I feel like I can put together 85% of the stack, out of memory of the rule(s), right now after reading through the booklet once (I did 1/2 of the deck on the shuttle to work this morning for example). Doing quick card<->number conversions seems simple, especially with the shortcuts provided but I can't comment on that since I need more experience.

Again, I can't say to buy or not buy this. What I will say is that I am happy I made this purchase.

And I want to know the story behind Raven's name now (and what Atlas cut out of the introduction!). I also want to know which trick spurred the creation of the Solution but isn't in the booklet!

Have a great weekend,
Lem
Gairloch
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Glad you're enjoying The Solutuon Lem. Thank you for your review. Those missing paragraphs are now locked in Atlas' deepest, darkest vaults! Ha as for the rest I'm sure all will be revealed in good time. 😉

Enjoy the routines when you get to grips with those too.

Raven
Daren
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I think mine is being walked over from the states and then rowing boat!!! Lol. Can't wait to receive this
Atlas
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I've received a few enquiries about this today - to be clear, the books are shipping from the States. This means they will take a little longer to reach those in the UK. Everyone who bought the book received an email from me outlining a delivery window. Please wait for that window to pass before contacting me as regards the status of the delivery.

I know the anticipation is maddening, but please be patient - your book will get to you soon.

Best,

Atlas
Daniel Meadows
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I'm sure it will be worth the wait.

I remember talking to Atlas about the project back at the South Tyneside Convention in March, and had the pleasure of Raven's company this weekend.
In the space of 5 mins (tops), I had been talked through the system and had assembled the deck. I then managed to work through the deck making only a handful of mistakes, which I know I would iron out with practice.

What I particularly liked was how easy it was to convert from a given number back to a card. I need to put in the practice and start using the deck but I think this will give me the nudge. I've continually wanted to learn a stack but never actually got there. If you're in the same boat then this might be worth your attention!
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Rolyan
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Quote:
On Nov 17, 2015, Daniel Meadows wrote:
I'm sure it will be worth the wait.

I remember talking to Atlas about the project back at the South Tyneside Convention in March, and had the pleasure of Raven's company this weekend.
In the space of 5 mins (tops), I had been talked through the system and had assembled the deck. I then managed to work through the deck making only a handful of mistakes, which I know I would iron out with practice.

What I particularly liked was how easy it was to convert from a given number back to a card. I need to put in the practice and start using the deck but I think this will give me the nudge. I've continually wanted to learn a stack but never actually got there. If you're in the same boat then this might be worth your attention!

5 MINUTES!!! Now I feel stupid. It arrived today so I said to my better half "I'm just going to memorise this while I have a cuppa". She looked at me disbelievingly so I said "don't worry your pretty little head, I've read the hype on the Café and it's apparently really easy. No one is having problems".

An hour and a half later she's laughing at me while I sit holding the book with a glazed expression on my face and dead, soulless eyes staring into the abys.

I need to reread it again, because I must be missing something somewhere. Assuming that I'm not the dumbest person on the planet, either I've not grasped what I should have grasped, or it is a tad more difficult than has been suggested.

Early days and early thoughts.......but my brain hurts!
Daren
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You will get there, I have read it a few times and I randomly throw a card out there, do the necessary and I double check my thinkings with the book and getting it right, I think the more and more you familiarise yourself with this the easier it will become, I love this and work with a mem deck quite a bit, I have been using the aronson stack but will now convert over to the Solution stack
neoinwonderland
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For what it's worth. Here is a short review of the Solution.

First of all I think it's most important to know why I bought the solution as I think some readers will be able to relate and see if it fits them. I am a magician who performs for fun and not for a living. Therefore I tend to stick to effects that are fun to learn and perform. Some people might get some fun out of "trying to memorise a deck" but I am not one of those people. I am also one of those people that sometimes performs on a daily basis and at other times doesn't perform for half a month to a month. Last but not least, I occasionally have a gig. For those reasons alone, memorising a deck just wasn't for me because 1.) I can't find the pleasure in memorising a deck 2.) since I perform irregularly (and most of the time improvise) and I also love to perform other magic/mental effects I am not able/willing to refresh my memorised deck often enough 3.) The times I do happen to have a gig I want to perform effects I am comfortable with, the amount of practise I get with a memorised deck just isn't enough, especially because I can't find the fun in practising the stack.

If people think I am lazy, should not perform memorised deck routines or anything else because of everything outlined above, you would do yourself a favour by skipping this review as it will be of little use for you. That being said I still think the ultimate solution is a real memorised stack such as the Tamariz stack and if you already have it down or enjoy practicing a memorised stack "the solution" is not for you (unless you disagree with the fact that a real memorised stack is not the ultimate solution for memorised deck routines). Memorising a stack just isn't for me and that's why I bought the solution.

I will first compare it with my most used method in the past. I used to perform with the breakthrough card system and (without going into too much details) I still think the breakthrough card system is the easiest and best system for basic memorised deck effects. If you just want to name cards that spectators are thinking of(add some creative thinking to this routine off course) or are just starting out and still nervous for a regular performance, this is the best solution for you (I would also like to advise you to have a look at some Boris Wild routines, some of them work beautifully with this deck). Although I loved performing with the breakthrough card system I probably will be using the solution more since it allows you to do a lot more. With the solution you will be able to name the position of a card, tell how many cards a spectator has in his/her pocket, ACAAN and so on.

Now let's get on with the actual review. The first time you start reading you will think this method is just a pipe dream (I always do a read through first before I start learning, which I shouldn't have done with this book). It just seemed like a method that takes too much time and effort to learn to do quick. There are the basic rules, and then there are exceptions (which seem like a lot if you don't try it out yourself right away).

After my first read-through I started implementing it myself and that's when I realised the potential. I was able to remember and carry out the basics much faster than any method I tried in the past and if it weren't for the exceptions I actually dare to say it would be easier than the breakthrough card system. Off course the exceptions took a bit more effort but most of them were surprisingly easy to remember. If you just wan't to do basic effects you can stick to the breakthrough card system, however if you want to open up more possibilities "the solution" or any other method for knowing each position of a card in the stack is the way to go. Another important aspect is that the stack isn't cyclical (I'm dutch so I don't know if that is the right word). Although I am generally not really worried about something like this (the only effect I perform that could cause a problem with this would be calling cards or a face-up ACAAN), it is a character that makes "the solution" stand out from a lot of other easy alternatives.

Furthermore, there are some effects in the book. If you are already performing with a stack you won't find many original methods in here but the patter/routine provided for each effect is golden (especially for an effect called go-figure). I think the strength of the effects (at least for me) lies within the provided patter/routine, which is (as most people are probably used to who bought anything from Atlas) extremely well explained. If you already have your own favourite stacked deck, are into mental magic and don't know how to present a certain effect well enough, this book is worth the money. Furthermore if you wan't to practice writing with a S***I, there is an effect in there which makes it almost impossible to get caught/backtrack.

So the bottom line:
-I will be using the solution in the future
-It is a good alternative for those that don't want to memorise a stack (for whatever reason)
-Fast and easy to learn
-Basics will be easy to remember for a very long time
-Exceptions are not ideal and need to be repeated from time to time, but most of them feel pretty natural and won't take much effort to get down fast once you did it once (this is an assumption since I haven't forgotten them)
-Most methods for the effects in the book are too basic for experienced mem-deck magicians
-Nice patter included with each routine

Furthermore I would like to say that I cannot compare it to Mr. Dyment's stack since I don't own it, so it would be safe to say "the solution" is the best method for me at the moment. If Mr. Dyment's method has all the benefits named in this review it would be just as appropriate as "the solution" to get the job done. I think the value you gain from learning this stack is worth the effort and I can't imagine that someone you perform for would crack the code when they examine the deck.

I would rate this product an 8 out of 10! Definitely happy with my purchase Smile
neoinwonderland
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Quote:
On Nov 17, 2015, Rolyan wrote:
Quote:
On Nov 17, 2015, Daniel Meadows wrote:
I'm sure it will be worth the wait.

I remember talking to Atlas about the project back at the South Tyneside Convention in March, and had the pleasure of Raven's company this weekend.
In the space of 5 mins (tops), I had been talked through the system and had assembled the deck. I then managed to work through the deck making only a handful of mistakes, which I know I would iron out with practice.

What I particularly liked was how easy it was to convert from a given number back to a card. I need to put in the practice and start using the deck but I think this will give me the nudge. I've continually wanted to learn a stack but never actually got there. If you're in the same boat then this might be worth your attention!

5 MINUTES!!! Now I feel stupid. It arrived today so I said to my better half "I'm just going to memorise this while I have a cuppa". She looked at me disbelievingly so I said "don't worry your pretty little head, I've read the hype on the Café and it's apparently really easy. No one is having problems".

An hour and a half later she's laughing at me while I sit holding the book with a glazed expression on my face and dead, soulless eyes staring into the abys.

I need to reread it again, because I must be missing something somewhere. Assuming that I'm not the dumbest person on the planet, either I've not grasped what I should have grasped, or it is a tad more difficult than has been suggested.

Early days and early thoughts.......but my brain hurts!


You might feel better when you hear that you are not the only one who tried to comprehend it just by reading. If you directly implement it, instead of first trying to understand it, you will find that it is a lot easier than it looks.
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