The Fake Calculator
Holloway Cut Advisor (HCA) is a web-based honeypot collecting personal information under a diamond evaluating system’s guise. The HCA is designed to spy on consumers and to channel potential buyers to affiliated dealers.
- – NOT recognized by any gemological lab in the world
- – NOT used by professionals
- – NOT supported by the scientific community
- – NOT subject to a peer review
Just like the two swindlers in “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” the HCA plays on people’s pride and intellectual vanity by selling a “diamond score” that no one can see.
The imposters, in this case, are the Australian diamond broker and his Russian sidekick. Garry Ian Holloway and Sergey Sivovolenko worked out a scam to substitute the established diamond grading system with their own cockamamie scheme. One is a self-proclaimed diamond guru; the other is a crackpot operative of notorious Russian tech start-up Octonus Software.
They acquired the US patent 7,251,619 for “a computer-implemented system for gem evaluation, and assessment of a diamond appearance based upon the determined values of attributes contributing to the visual appeal and/or the established rating value.”
Sounds like a load of BS? You bet it is!
Not surprisingly, the HCA calculator is hosted by the Pricescope. The Pricescope, for those not familiar with this notorious troll-farm, is a public forum used by a closely-knit group of diamond and gem dealers to promote their own interests.
The HCA creators say they can rate a diamond’s “visual appeal” using a proprietary system. Despite their claim, the HCA is neither groundbreaking nor independent or unbiased. It has no scientific base. HCA is a trap for anal-retentives who think they can outsmart the system.
All ideal cut diamonds look exactly the same; a regular person cannot tell them apart. The subtle differences do not make one superior to another. They are equally beautiful. The Holloway Cut Adviser (HCA) is billed as a diamond-cut calculator. It takes a diamond’s metrics such as total depth, table size, and crown angle. The diamond’s pavilion angle determines 90% of the score.
The calculator also requires a diamond’s weight, measurements, and certificate number. This additional information is collected purely for marketing purposes, and it is not used in the calculation.
Diamonds are scored on a scale from 0 to 10 — the lower the number, the higher the score. Yet, the highest score is not zero but 1.0. Anything less than 1 is also undesirable. The calculator is currently limited to three calculations free of charge; after that, it demands payment.