

MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
One Bill Malone Here I Go Again Vol 3, Bill teaches "Hands Off Memory Test" using the Aronson stack.
Can anyone confirm or disconfirmed the fact that Bill's instructions are either wrong or lacking in crucial information? In the phase where he divines the number of cards in the stack, he simply says he gets the information from the top card (8 of spades) but I believe there is a calculation needed that he neglects to mention. He shows the 8 of spades on top of the stack and then says there are 23 cards in the stack. But in Aronson, the 8 of spades is 23. That's 23 from the top not from the bottom. Further, although he uses The Aronson stack at some point in the filming it seems the cards got shuffled so they are no longer in Aronson Stack which adds a lot of confusion to the explanation. 
mlippo Inner circle Trieste (Italy) 1227 Posts 
I learnt this routine from that video and used it quite a number of times.
I use Mnemonica, so any inconsistency with Aronson's stack would've flown over me. Surely if you glimpse the (say) 30th card in your stack, you know that the first two spectators have a total of 29 cards, therefore you need to do 5229 = 23 (or 5230+1 = 23) to know how many you have left. As for the explanation with the card non in proper order, I can't comment on that. Mark 
MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
To calculate how many cards are left in the stack you would do 53x where x is the stack number of the top card of the stack. You can verify this by using x=52. That would mean you are holding the last card in the stack and there is only one card. Or us x=1. You have the first card in the stack on top of the deck and you are holding all 52 cards.
This is what I worked out but I wanted to be sure I wasn't missing something. Malone is generally a good teacher but this one is a mess it seems. 
Nikodemus Inner circle 1362 Posts 
Hi Mike,
You are correct! He goes through the explanation very quickly. He is NOT using a stacked deck at that point. He turns over the 8S, then shows the card above it is 9H. These are at 23 & 42 in the Aronson stack  miles apart. He then says there should be 23 cards in the spectator's hand. This would be true if he had the deck stacked in reverse order. But assuming it is supposed to be in normal stack order the correct calculation is 53  23. In the performance section of the video, the card he looks at is the 7S (19) and he says there are 34 cards in her hand (5319). 
MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
Thanks, I guess I really just wanted confirmation. At one point I did think maybe half the stack was reversed or something complicated like that. I just knew something wasn't right.
I'm practicing calculating 53x by doing 50x + 3 and it's not too hard but I worry about getting brain freeze in front of an audience. Thanks All! 
MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
I wouldn't be surprised if Malone knows the Aronson stack so well he doesn't have to do any conscious calculation to get the number of cards remaining.

Nikodemus Inner circle 1362 Posts 
I have heard of people memorising the positions from bottom as well as from top, so they don't need to calculate each time.
Also, if you need more time, you could ask the spectator to mentally picture their card, and try to send it to you. Then you can concentrate in silence for as long as you need. 
Nikodemus Inner circle 1362 Posts 
Actually, you could perform that Hands Off Memory Test with a reversestacked deck if you struggle with the maths.

JanForster Inner circle Germany ... when not traveling... 4241 Posts 
That's what I would do here ... ... Jan
Jan Forster
www.janforster.de 
MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
If you reverse the stack it will make that phase easier but it will make the phase where you call out all the cards the spectator is holding much harder. Calling out the cards in numerical order is much easier than in reverse numerical order. At least for me.
Subtracting from 50 then adding 3 isn't too hard and you only have todo it once. 
Nikodemus Inner circle 1362 Posts 
Hi Mike,
It's a tradeoff. Personal preference. Some people would be more likely to get stuck on the subtraction than calling the cards in reverse order. I would recommend you practice reciting the cards in reverse order, because it will strengthen your recall of the stack. Also try reciting all the odd positioned cards and all the evens. Another very simple but effective exercise is to shuffle a deck, then call out the number of each card as you deal them. 
MeetMagicMike Inner circle Gainesville Fl 3566 Posts 
I have the stack remembered really well and I can call the first 26 out in numerical order without thinking about the numbers. I found a great App that lets you drill with multiple choice or with no multiple choice. It has a lot of drills that I would have thought were impossible a year ago but I'm getting pretty comfortable with the stack now.

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