While I appreciate the effort that has gone into the new list and although it opens up valuable new perspectives, I have to say I much prefer the old list. The difference between them? The new one uses selected numbers to achieve a spurious objectivity, whereas the old one was based on judgment, weighting achievements on a case-by-case basis to take account of the many factors that made them more or less impressive.
that's a problem I'm very much used to as a professional statistician : even when we know for sure that there are many factors to take into account, some ones being very hard to quantify together with other ones which are more easily quantifiable, the people and the institutions demand from us a very well-defined and also quite easy method
... and if the method is more complicated they shout for "subjectivity"
... and if we don't take these other factors into account they also shout at our stats because of those misses
That sounds funny but it isn't when one is really concerned by one's job actually
(which I'm not anymore unfortunately)
... and also when noone ever allow statisticians to explain why they do like that, the interest or limits of the work, only allows non-professionals to shout
That's why yes, I prefer keeping such kinds or "rankings" just for myself because I will not be contested for that and I can take into account complicated things without having to answer questions about it and having to justify. I prefer doing that than giving results with a simple method which I know is just plainly wrong.
Of course with that kind of complicated methods the frontier between "complexity" and "subjectivity" may become thin, even with the best personal integrity (even though it still helps a lot
), and that's why it's already questionable when one does that for oneself, but it's still an effective way imo.
Gonzales is a perfectly good choice for No. 1, but ... his lengthy domination surely owes something to the fact that during it he played almost exclusively on an extremely fast indoor surface that was tailor-made for his game. How dominant would Nadal have been if 90% of his career had been on clay?
yes, that's clearly the main spot on Gonzales' resume and why Laver and Federer are widely considered as the best pretenders for the number 1 (between Laver and Federer the debate is very opened imo).