Suggestion : Sort games with ''Absolute Time" settings to appear at the top of one's list of games when sorting by time remaining

Hi !

With many correspondence games in progress and multiple pages to scroll through, it can be easy to miss games with even 5-14 days of absolute time remaining until they have so very little (1-2 days) remaining, to be impossible to finish in time.

I’ve noticed this quite a few times when having a few in progress and having to search manually for them (there’s also no easy way to search for them).

I think it would make sense to have a sort option ( or just do this by default) to sort absolute games at the very top of one’s list when sorting by time remaining so they aren’t missed.


Heh, when I was messing around with the sorting in December, I had wondered if anyone actually used absolute time for correspondence, since it seems pretty impossible… I guess the answer is “yes”, and “yes it’s pretty impossible”.

The same problem exists for correspondence games using Canadian time. Canadian time is great for in-person games. It’s designed for adapting a standard analogue chess clock, which is absolute time, to time-per-move. But for online correspondence games, if the clock says “3 Days”, that might be for 1 move or for 10 moves (configurable up to 50 on OGS), and you can’t tell just by looking.

TBH, it seems like the “right” solution is to stick to Fischer, Simple, and Byo-yomi for correspondence games, since they all work pretty well for that :wink:

… but I wonder if it would be reasonable to augment the display of the clock when shown in game lists:

  • For Canadian, maybe a move counter, like “3 Days ⑦” for 7 moves.
  • For Absolute, maybe !⃝, like “3 Days !⃝”, to represent “all the moves”.


(The sorting idea you propose sounds possible too. I worry about straying too far from “expiration time”, in case we trigger more instances of thumbnails jumping around, but maybe it’d be fine. I don’t think it makes sense to add as a setting, since it’s so specific/fine-grained.)


The fast correspondence group uses it a lot. It’s great for knowing that things will move along to a predictable timescale.

It’s far from impossible with appropriate time limits. 7 days per player starts to get tough but the absolute fortnight tourneys that run monthly work very well as far as I can see.

At least in the player cards doesn’t it say 3 days/10 or however many moves remain?

But I agree that Canadian has felt harder to use for correspondence when playing across timezones. Maybe it’s because reasonable settings are less intuitive but I also feel it’s easier to manipulate the clock with you own playing speed with Canadian.

Back on topic, I do think it’s reasonable to highlight absolute time games somehow if that’s possible. And I would strongly object to removing this option for correspondence. (Not bothered about Canadian! But I suppose it has some fans for some reason?)


Just to be clear, I wasn’t suggesting removing either option!


Oh, yeah, you’re right, there’s already an affordance to call out Canadian time (even if sorting isn’t quite ideal, you can see it in the list).

Could use the same (or similar) syntax for absolute. Maybe “3 days/*”, or something.

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“3 days/game”?

Sorry, I misinterpreted “stick to” as I’m just getting up and posted before my morning cuppa…


<time>/* doesn’t need to be translated and is nice and compact, and I think absolute time users will get to know what it means. <time>/game could bloat the size of the clock.

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Perhaps sort games by adjusted remaining time. Denote by T the remaining time on the clock.

  • For Fischer or Japane byo-yomi: adjusted time = T
  • For Canadian byo-yomi: adjusted time = T / (number of moves to be played until the end of the period)
  • For absolute: adjusted time = T / max((N*0.75-n)/2 ; 10) where n is the current move number and N is the number of intersections on the board.

I.e., when you use absolute time, the system assumes that the number of stones that are played in the game is equal to 75% of the number of intersections until move N*0.75, and afterwards it assumes you have 10 moves left.


This seems like a reasonable algorithm

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Yeah, that seems reasonable to me too.

I have a pull request up adding a /* suffix for absolute time and incorporating the suggested sorting changes.

It’s possible the thumbnail jumping that @_KoBa saw previously could start happening with absolute time games, since there isn’t an easy way to divine the current move number until the gobans connect. I imagine it’ll be a net win—if you’re using absolute time for correspondence, you’d rather get these sorted to the top!—but if the jumping gets bad, it’s probably worth trying harder to get move numbers up front.


Is it also easy to miss this game: Tournament Game: 💘Valentine's Day's 14x14 tournament💖 (97556) R:3 (fuseki3 vs oonthongngam.som)

For many months now, all other players have finished their game and are waiting for the next round, but this one game has managed to get stuck at less than 20 moves in half a year!

I’m not sure there’s a better answer for games like that…

The goal of “sorting by clock” is to sort games by urgency of a move. Since that game has time control of two weeks per move, then after every move it goes to the bottom of the list.


:stuck_out_tongue: Oh, no-- that game could be somewhat easy to find by scrolling from the bottom of the list, though, although in the case of tournament games like that, do many players really join such a tournament, then expect to finish the rounds within it much much faster than its time settings…?

I’d imagine, when joining a tournament with 14 days/move + pauses on weekend, and 14 rounds, it’d be expected to go on a very long time (or even meant to not end quickly by the tournament creator, when created with those settings…?). :sweat_smile:


If by “many players” you mean “almost every player” then yes!

It’s true that with this time-setting it is technically possible to wait 19 days, 23 hours, 59 minutes and 30 seconds at every move before finally playing, but just because something is possible doesn’t mean players will expect it to happen every time. Actually, doing this at every move would be quite a feat.

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