Good points made by all. If it's really the fivepoint match that bothers you, it could well be because that one probably has the most games with tricky matchscores (on average). Kit Woolsey's article explains it really well, it's a long read but well worth it: http://www.bkgm.com/articles/GOL/Aug99/fivept.htm
i'm sure I'l learn a lot from this question as I can't see the logic of leaving an extra blot when I will already be staring down a shotgun on the 4 point. I suppose 13/10(2) does leave all my outfield stripped but it gives an extra landing point for my escape and doesn't leave an extra hit.
I can't think of anything else to say … any thoughts?
An alternative way to figure out the best play for your 33s would be to think what would you do if the opponent doubles (correctly or wrong doesn't matter) after you move. While most "reasonable" moves lead to a take, if you play as per XGs suggestion leads you to the most definite take.
There is of course the option to just stay at 24 for a couple of rounds and see what happens, the problem is you will soon be running out of moves unless you play 9/3(4) .Let aside that even if you get lucky and get out of there you would not have anywhere to land your pip other than on 13. If you don't get lucky your opponent would then play a simple game of blocking you in mobilize his 2 pips at 12 and either double you up leading you to a sure drop or just take his chances for a gammon.
I'd recommend analyzing and saving all your matches. Both XG and gnu allow you to keep a database of saved matches so you can query them to see how you are progressing. XG's db is much simpler to use, so I'd recommend it over gnu.
With your matches in the db, you can easily see whether your losing streaks are due to poor luck or poor play (or a combo of the two). XG will give you summaries of your performance rating (PR) and luck grouped by match length, so if you really play worse in 5-pointers it will be obvious. The first thing to do is to determine whether you really do play 5 pointers worse than 3 pointers.
If so, then it's time to investigate further. Are you losing equity because you don't understand certain match scores? 5-pointers are long enough that there are several tricky scores; 3 pointers don't have any tricky match scores (or should I say that there are few and well understood)
Perhaps you are making checker play errors that would not be errors at a different score. If so try to identify the trouble match score and learn a bit about it.
are they all accessing the same neural net or do they have their own and continually improve...
All the gammonbots are gnubg with some pearl wrapped around it to interface with FIBS. My understanding is that the neural net is "static" within a version of gnu and doesn't change (learn) as it plays. Newer versions of gnubg may undergo additional neural net training and be stronger. AFAIK, all gammonbots use the same version of gnu and the same settings and therefore can be assumed to be identical. Playing the highest rated one is a good strategy to maximize your rating, but be aware that this may mean that you are over-rated.
thank you both for your answers. There are some very good points made and I shall take these onboard. especially taking my time each move.
kma - as far as i'm aware the gbots are all the same program so I just pick the highest rated available and play. That way I lose the least points or win the most ... hmm ... that's a point - are they all accessing the same neural net or do they have their own and continually improve?