Index ← 2770a CFJ 2770 2771 → text
==============================  CFJ 2770  ==============================

    Murphy satisfies the Winning Condition of Renaissance.


Caller:                                 Murphy

Judge:                                  Yally
Judgement:                              TRUE

Appeal:                                 2770a
Decision:                               REMAND

Judge:                                  Yally

Judge:                                  scshunt

Judge:                                  omd
Judgement:                              TRUE



Called by Murphy:                       27 Feb 2010 16:02:08 GMT
Assigned to Yally:                      27 Feb 2010 17:09:11 GMT
Judged TRUE by Yally:                   07 Mar 2010 17:12:19 GMT
Appealed by omd:                        07 Mar 2010 17:22:14 GMT
Appealed by Murphy:                     07 Mar 2010 18:25:28 GMT
Appealed by scshunt:                    07 Mar 2010 18:39:38 GMT
Appeal 2770a:                           07 Mar 2010 18:39:38 GMT
REMANDED on Appeal:                     11 Mar 2010 22:22:36 GMT
Assigned to Yally:                      11 Mar 2010 22:22:36 GMT
Yally recused:                          08 Apr 2010 13:23:25 GMT
Assigned to scshunt:                    08 Apr 2010 13:25:45 GMT
scshunt recused:                        08 Apr 2010 22:55:29 GMT
Assigned to omd:                        16 Apr 2010 15:26:53 GMT
Judged TRUE by omd:                     16 Apr 2010 19:19:14 GMT


Caller's Arguments:

I won by Renaissance last November, but no rule explicitly stated that
I ceased to satisfy the Winning Condition of Renaissance (contrast the
cleanup procedures for Paradox, Clout, and Legislation).  For Winning
Conditions (generally defined as "when X occurs", while Losing
Conditions are generally defined as "while X is true"), I can think of
three possible interpretations:

  1) Winning Conditions are only satisfied for an instant.  If you
     satisfy any Losing Conditions during that same instant, tough
     cookies, you have to get rid of them and then re-satisfy a
     Winning Condition.

  2) Winning Conditions are satisfied until you win with them, at
     which point they're implicitly turned off (and the cleanup
     procedure should, if needed, prevent them from being turned on
     again for the same reason as before).

  3) Winning Conditions are satisfied until explicitly turned off.

Of these, #1 is messy (if you destroy Ribbons to satisfy Renaissance,
then later in the same message destroy Rests to cease satisfying
having-Rests, does it work?); both #2 and #3 are more plausible, but I
favor #3 because the cleanup procedures intuitively suggest as much.


Judge Yally's Arguments:

Rule 2186:

      When one or more persons satisfy at least
      one Winning Condition and do not satisfy any Losing Conditions,
      all such persons win the game.


      Each Winning Condition should (if needed) specify a cleanup
      procedure to prevent an arbitrary number of wins arising from
      essentially the same conditions.  When one or more persons win
      the game, for each Winning Condition satisfied by at least one
      of those persons, its cleanup procedure occurs.

Rule 2199:

      If this rule mentions at least six different specific colors for
      Ribbons, then a player CAN destroy one Ribbon of each such color
      in eir possession to satisfy the Winning Condition of

The issue with this case comes with the word "satisfy."
defines the word satisfy as "to fulfill the desires, expectations,
needs, or demands of." This implies that once these needs are
satisfied, they continue to be satisfied until some outside effect
makes them no longer satisfied. And this would seem appropriate.
Consider satisfying the conditions for a mathematical proof. When
Andrew Wiles satisfied the conditions for a proof of Fermat's Last
Theorem, it was not for an instant that the idea was proven and then
once again it was unknown if A^n + B^n = C^n for a given integer n >=
2. Instead, the conditions for the theorem were continually satisfied.
Too, by destroying one Ribbon of each color in eir posession, Murphy
satisfied the Winning Condition of Renaissance perpetually until some
outside even caused him to no longer satisfy the Winning Condition of
Renaissance. The second quote from Rule 2186 seems to support this
belief, as it suggest the need for a cleanup procedure to prevent
multiple wins. It would seem the intent of this rule is that the
cleanup procedure stop the perpetual Winning Condition. However, this
Win by Renaissance is appropriately flawed. TRUE.


Appellant omd's Arguments:

I intend to appeal this judgement with 2 support.  Unlike the proof of
a theorem, winning the game is supposed to be an instantaneous, not
continuous, event, and e.g. "When one or more persons satisfy at least
one Winning Condition and do not satisfy any Losing Conditions, all
such persons win the game." implies that, in the case of ambiguity, we
should prefer the interpretation where satisfying a Winning Condition
only happens for an instant.


Appellant Murphy's Arguments:

coppro cited a past precedent in a-d, probably CFJ 2489.

The specific pattern addressed in that judgement is

  "Upon X, Y satisfies Z"

The (similar but not identical) pattern used by Rule 2199 is

  "Y CAN do X to satisfy Z"

Cleanup procedures to the effect of "Y does not satisfy Z for the
same X" are meaningful under either interpretation, e.g. to prevent
the same player(s) from re-satisfying Win by Junta by announcement
about the same proposal.  This could also be implemented as "Upon an
X that has not already caused Y to satisfy Z...", but separating it
into the cleanup procedure is more convenient (especially since cleanup
procedures may also do other things, e.g. Clout used to reset castes,
High Score used to reset scores).


Appellant scshunt's Arguments:

I support and do so because the judgment fails to address CFJ 2489,
which it appears to contradict.


Judge omd's Arguments:

As Appellant Murphy wrote,
> The specific pattern addressed in that judgement is
>  "Upon X, Y satisfies Z"
> The (similar but not identical) pattern used by Rule 2199 is
>  "Y CAN do X to satisfy Z"

CFJ 2489 depended entirely on the interpretation of the word "upon",
which does strongly imply a one-off event.  "upon" is not present
here, so that is not necessarily a valid precedent for this case.
But, in fact, I believe that precedent should be overruled.

As a test, I did a Google search for 'satisfy condition':

For me, most of the results on the first two pages are about math;
there are also:

'Fusion to cancel preference shares to satisfy condition of Paladin
takeover bid.'
'Failure to satisfy conditions precedent        ' (referring to a suit being
invalid because it does not satisfy conditions specified by law, etc.)
'Australia: =91Ocean glimpses=92 not enough [to] satisfy buyer=92s
condition' (referring to real estate)

In general, most of the conditions are always either satisfied or
unsatisfied, unless the entity potentially satisfying them
substantively changes (especially the math ones, as whether 3 is prime
does not change depending on when you test it, though whether x is
prime can change if x varies; whether a house has enough 'ocean
glimpses' is also generally static, but might change if the
surrounding skyline changes).  However, some of the legal ones start
off unsatisfied and become satisfied when an action is performed.
Initially, Fusion has not satisfied the condition of the Paladin
takeover bid; when it sells its preference shares, it satisfies it; if
it satisfies all conditions of the bid, the takeover can go through.
Initially, the conditions of initiating a lawsuit are not satisfied
because the suing party has not submitted any of the required
documents; when e submits a valid document, eir prospective lawsuit
satisfies one of the conditions; when the lawsuit satisfies all
conditions, it can be validly initiated.

(However, even the lawsuit could potentially falls into the first
class: the condition tested against the lawsuit can be defined as
"contains a valid document", which only changes when the lawsuit

What do we gain from this speculation?  Not much.  But there is an
important aspect to the usage of the word 'satisfy'.  At the time of
the takeover, I could ask:

"Does Paladin satisfy the condition of the takeover bid?"
"When did it satisfy that condition?"
"Did it satisfy the condition five minutes ago?"

"Satisfy" and "has satisfied" (or in the last case, "did satisfy" and
"had satisfied") are commonly used interchangeably.  In the context of
testing the condition, the verb is continuous; in the context of
causing the condition to become true, the verb is instantaneous.

Which, really, makes more sense than the current interpretation.  If,
in the rulebook for a game, you read:

"Upon the capture of a pawn, the capturer satisfies the Winning
Condition of Capture."
"When a person satisfies all Winning Conditions, e wins the game."

you would not say that winning is impossible unless the winner
satisfies the Winning Condition of Capture last (because otherwise e
ceases to satisfy the Condition and cannot win).  Yes, it says "upon",
but that refers to the time when e comes to satisfy the condition; e
still satisfies (in the other sense) the condition at all times after

The reason we think otherwise in the Agoran ruleset is (a) game custom
and (b) the effect of satisfying a Winning Condition:

      When one or more persons satisfy at least one Winning Condition
      and do not satisfy any Losing Conditions, all such persons win
      the game.

-- well, that plus the game custom (contrary to standard usage and not
actually specified anywhere in the rules) that winning the game does
not end it, but should be an instantaneous event.  If a rule said:

      Upon a player's deregistration, e satisfies the Losing Condition
      of Having Deregistered.

we would probably interpret it such that once you deregister, you can
never win again.  Why?  Because no rule uses Losing Conditions to
initiate an instantaneous event.

It may sometimes be appropriate to use the Ruleset as a whole to
determine interpretation-- it may sometimes be legitimate to change
the interpretation of a rule based on what other rules name as an
effect-- but in this case, I think it is appropriate to yield to the
standard meaning.

When a Winning Condition is satisfied (even with "upon"), it does not
cease to be satisfied until the Rules explicitly say so.

Corollary: Winning the game can be a non-instantaneous event.