Response to Athena's comments:
Thanks for the compliments.Thank you IcyFox for inviting to read your essay. It was very good and informative and opened up a lot of new perspectives. All in all it was very insightful. My compliments.
The variables are probably satisfactory for a start. Eventually they will be improved to give better estimates (hopefully).However, I do have a few reservations especially on the formula to calculate the outcome of two experts. Some of my points have already been addressed by Han Solo and others.
It is true that you have taken a number of variables into account, but those variables, in my opinion, are not totally decisive.
Yes, it's entirely possible for a 'weaker' fighter to defeat a 'stronger' fighter, which is accounted for in the stronger fighter's P(Lose) ~ the probability of a 'stronger' fighter losing to the 'weaker' one. When comparing two exponents, if P(Win) < P(Lose), then it simply implies that the first exponent is 'weaker' than the other.For instance having reached a particular level of attainment does not necessarily mean that one could defeat people with a "lower" martial arts insight.
Fan Yao, Linghu Chong*, reverend Chongxu had a higher insight in the art of the sword. However, when or if faced when the following people Fang Dongbai, Ren Woxing it would be unlikely that they would win.
Duan Zhengchun is able to "glue" his stances together, like the way Feng Qingyang taught Linghu Chong when Linghu was fighting Tian Baguang. However, it would be most unlikely that Duan Zhengchun could actually defeat someone like Zuo Lengchan.
I would say range is an extremely important factor but it usually applies only to modern warfare, where inter-continental ballistic missiles (range > 5,500km) come into play.Another example if I remember correctly Xiao Feng had a higher percentage if he were to fight Tonglao, that was a bit surprising. Her martial arts equal and sister Li Qiushui throws long distance attacks of 18 metres. Xiao Feng can only manage 10 metres. I am not saying that I am 100% sure that Tonglao and Li Qiushui are superior to Xiao Feng, but that particular factor was decisive to me why I rank Tonglao and her equals higher than Xiao Feng and his equals.
Edit : You can get an irrational sense of humour in the army. LOL.
There is a difference between the two, however. For the Taishan sword technique, presuming they could actually obtain all the required information (for argument's sake), the mathematical complexity of their project is probably too difficult for them to handle.All this calculating reminds me of (what I said before to you) the lost Taishan sword technique [袋宗如何]. It was said that this technique needed the user to calculate almost anything of his adversary (martial arts school, height, weapon, how long was the weapon, etc. etc.) and then attack. But this technique seemed rather "off" because how could you obtain all that information of your opponent.
The same goes for your formula, the descriptions in the novels are sketchy at best. Most of us (actually talking about myself now) muddle my way through when discussing levels, making comparisons etc., the points, the comparisons I bring up are highly speculative. I could be miles of and probably I am. I have read Jin Yong novels quite accurately in fact very accurately, but even I cannot say:"my assessments are precise and correct."
The biggest flaw in their technique is their lack of knowledge in Newtonian mechanics, which is a requisite to calculate the force, acceleration, centre of gravity, speed, circular motion, etc., without which they would be unable to derive elementary results like how much force the opponent will exert and how much force is necessary for them to deflect or evade the force. Yes, they would roughly know how much force they need, but they wouldn't be able to calculate it, just like how experimental physicists can measure the mass of a proton while theoretical physicists can't calculate it.
Now assuming they could hire Newton to teach them mechanics and they got over the first obstacle, they would face another obstacle. They could not be entirely certain that after executing a certain technique the opponent would follow up with another specific technique, so they would have to calculate probability distributions to decide which technique the opponent would most probably execute as a follow-up move. If they wanted to play it safe, they would have to calculate a large number of combinations (like Palm 13 following Palm 3 or Palm 18 following Palm 7) which would hit infinity if they were fighting an opponent who has mastered the Ideal Formless Style.
Assuming they managed to learn statistics and some advanced mathematical methods and got over the second obstacle, they would face yet another obstacle. How on Earth could they calculate all these stuff with a standard Chinese abacus? They would have so many parameters that even a supercomputer might need weeks generate the results. Even with powerful supercomputers, physicists can hardly derive a mathematical model using the General Relativity equation to show anything more complicated than a completely uniform sphere interacting with space-time.
So I think they hadn't the "foggiest idea" what they were getting themselves into when they initiated their project.
The equation I came up with, however, is extremely straightforward. The steps are pretty simple too. Read the novel, find the relevent evidence and estimate the levels based on the guidelines provided in the treatise. The equation should work even for vague evidence; just that it wouldn't be as accurate. The system (treatise, guidelines, equation and all) would only produce ridiculous results if the evidence is inconsistent, like the Linghu Chong Paradox. (Anyone doesn't know what this is about?)
I'm also convinced that using public opinion isn't such a good idea. Some other members have expressed their reservations on this too. Ideally the levels will be decided based on evidence found in the book alone, but of course there would be times when the evidence is insufficient or inconsistent, so that's where the debates (and the joy of debating) come in (and don't forget the survivor games too).By asking the opinions of the public (other forum members) is also not a good method. Look at the survivor games, A Qing was voted out quite early in the game along with Tianshan Tonglao and in the end Ren Yingying won. Hello?!? A Qing is a girl who defeated thousands and thousands of soldiers with a bamboo stick! She is a goddess. A thousand of Ren Yingyings are no match for A Qing.
Giving numbers to the particular variables is just guesswork, so in the end nothing has changed. We are still guessing away, but using mathematics now. Which more or less takes away the joy in debating, discussing Jinyonglogy martial arts comparisons.
Thanks again. More on the equation later.Again, I think you've done a wonderful job. But the formula, in my opinion, needs to be re-evaluated.