So if your rank as converted from your ELO is lower than 25k or higher than 9d, the site will still display your rank as 25k or 9d, respectively. It used to be that people’s and bots’ displayed rank could exceed 9d if their ELO merited it, but not anymore. As far as I know, ranks lower than 25k have never been displayed by the site.
(Automatching and the ranking system are based on ELO rather than the displayed rank as converted from that, so for all practical purposes, the site DOES distinguish between the strengths of these players; it just doesn’t DISPLAY the differences in strength.)
In the case of ranks exceeding 9d, I think this is due to the old convention that 9d was the highest official rank that could be reached, but I don’t see the purpose of sticking to that convention. Why lump all the strongest players into one rank if there are clearly differences, especially since the site already used to do that?
In the case of ranks below 25k, it makes even less sense to me since I don’t think there was ever any convention that stated that 25k is the weakest possible rank. I think absolute novices to the game are probably around 40k, so there is a LOT of variation in ranks that isn’t displayed (but considered for practical purposes anyway in the form of ELO).
We can already see the variations in actual strength if we look at players’ ELO instead of rank, but I think it’s pointless not to also convert the ELO into the appropriate ranks beyond the arbitrary boundaries of 25k and 9d.
Who’s with me?