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Adding Money to your BBO Account
BBO will charge you a $5 registration fee to participate in each Learning Game. Both you and your partner must have the money in your account BEFORE you attempt to register. Note, it is possible for one person to pay for both partners, if you wish -- you will get an option to click a button "I will pay for my partner." Click here for info on how to add money to BBO. Do not add BBO money through the app — log in at www.bridgebase.com
BBO — Finding and Playing the Game
Before we begin: I advise against using the BBO app for our lesson. Instead, use your Internet Browser and log into www.bridgebase.com.
Registration for Kim’s Learning Game begins two hours before game time. To find and register for this game:
1. You must have at least $5 in your BBO account.
2. You must have a partner, or use the Partnership Desk to find one before you can register.
3. On the BBO Home page, under Featured Areas, click on Virtual Clubs. Then click on the bottom choice — All Clubs. You will see a long list of tournaments. Scroll down to the ones starting in the amount of between now and the start of your game, and look for “Kim’s Learning Game.” Or, you can type “Kim” in the search box at the top of the list on the right, and my tournament will be selected.
Click on the name of the tournament, and now a box will appear asking you to name your partner. Enter the BBO name of your partner and then Invite. Your partner will receive your invitation and only has to click YES. In order for the partnership to be registered, both players must be logged into BBO. You can register any time two hours before start time; then log out and go do other things until game time. But, if you’re both not back on BBO at start time, you will not play.
How to Get a Partner
If you do not have a partner, it’s OK! You’ll get one!! When you click on Kim’s Learning Game and you’re asked to name your partner, look above the green box on the right and click PARTNERSHIP DESK. If others are there waiting click on someone’s name to invite them. If not, click under “Add Your Name” (I Will Only Pay for Myself). Now you are at the Partnership Desk waiting to be invited. Check back often to either invite, or be invited!
Can I Get Help or Advice While Playing?
Since this is a learning experience, the Directors (Kim and Elizabeth) will help you figure out what to bid or play if you get "stuck." It would not be fair to help any one person too much, so please only call us if you truly can't think of what to do. Also call us if something isn't right at your table -- for example, a player disappears or refuses to act when it's their turn. Watch this excellent, short video on how to call the Director in a BBO Tournament.
Going Back and Forth Between Zoom and BBO
I strongly encourage you to practice this before your classes start, if you have never used Zoom AND another program at the same time.
Many players find it easiest to run Zoom on one device, and BBO on another. For example, you could have Zoom on your iPad and BBO on your computer. Just make sure you have the volume muted or turned all the way down on your BBO device so it doesn't cause feedback to Zoom.
But, you do not need this. With one computer, you begin with BBO to register for the tournament. Then, you can minimize BBO, or simply click on your Zoom app, and open Zoom with the link you will receive by e-mail the night before.
To go back and forth between them, you can look at the icons, or symbols, in your Tray or Task Bar at the bottom of your screen, or on your home screen if using a tablet. Click the one you want to go to. To switch from BBO to Zoom, just click the Zoom symbol. And vice versa.
Another way you can go back and forth is:
MacBook or other Apple Device:
To switch back to the application you were using previously:
• Command + tab. Use this over and over to go back and forth.
To switch back to the application you were using previously:
• Alt + tab. Use this over and over to go back and forth.
If You Have Never Used BBO or Zoom Before
2. Register for an account on BridgeBase Online. Be sure to send me your BBO name once you’ve created it!
INSTRUCTIONS FOR CREATING A BBO ACCOUNT
Go to: www.bridgebase.com
In the upper right, you will see a red button that says Log In/Register. Click on that.
This will take you to a page with two blue boxes. Click on the top one that says: Become A Member. Free!
This will take you to a page with a series of questions. For now, you only have to worry about filling in the first four lines on the upper left.
User name — create a screen name for yourself, it should be something close to your real name, first and last, so I can identify you. If you choose a user name that is already in use, you will soon get a message that says "Unavailable." So choose another name (e.g.by adding numbers or letters to your name) until you get one that says "Available" to the right of the name.
Fill in the next 3 lines, password, confirm password, and your e-mail address. The other questions are optional.
WRITE DOWN YOUR USER NAME AND PASSWORD, so you don't forget them.
Now look at the bottom of the screen and check the box that says, "I Agree to Terms of Service." Then click REGISTER.
Now you will have to check your e-mail, and when you get one from Bridge Base, open it and click where it says Click Here to Confirm.
Now you will be back at the beginning, and be taken back to Bridgebase.com. Click Log In/Register, and now instead of "Register" click "Log In." Enter your name and password (possibly your computer has saved it for you.)
If you've done this correctly and have logged into BBO, you will see a page with a blue banner across the top that says: Play or Watch Bridge. This is where you begin! Try playing some solitaire bridge to get the hang of clicking on the bidding box and playing your cards.
For additional help, there is a tutorial on using BBO that I've heard is very helpful. My advice is to download one topic at a time, rather than the entire 38-minute video, as that one takes a long time to come up.
If you have any trouble with BBO, call me beforehand so we can get you set up: 617-372-6376.
Further Thoughts About the Learning Games
There are many new aspects of the online bridge environment, especially when it comes to lessons. We are all trying new ways and learning as we go. I’m really excited that so many have expressed interest in the Learning Games. Very few other bridge clubs have tried what we're going to try — to offer lessons where you can play hands in class. We're going to make this happen DURING a BBO tournament. This is so you can practice what we're teaching you, and get immediate experience and feedback. But, this is still experimental and as such, there may be glitches. We will do our best to make this the best experience possible.