Last Updated: May 10, 2011

Gambling FAQ

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Betting Systems

  • What do you think of my betting system?
  • My betting system will make us both rich. Will you run a computer simulation on it?
  • I don’t care if my system fails a billion-hand computer trial because I don’t intend to live that long.
  • Will the casinos throw me out when I win too much with my betting system?
  • If I double my bet after every loss then I can’t lose, right?
  • If the Martingale is no good then the Anti-Martingale will win, right?
  • When do I enter the “long run?”

Blackjack

  • Does it make any difference which position I sit at?
  • Is it true that an idiot at third base will cause the other players to lose?
  • How should I prepare myself to play blackjack?
  • Why is the house edge for single-deck lower than for multi-deck?
  • Which card-counting strategy do you recommend?
  • What is the probability of winning any given hand?
  • What is the probability of getting a blackjack?
  • How did you calculate that?
  • What do you think of the strategy of mimicking the dealer?
  • What is the probability of losing $x in a fair game?
  • I disagree about splitting 8’s against a 10 or an ace.
  • I disagree about standing with two sevens against a dealer 10 in single deck.
  • I disagree about some other play.
  • What is the house edge if you don’t double or split?
  • What is the probability of the dealer getting x cards without busting?

Craps

  • How did you derive the house edge in craps?
  • What would be the combined house edge if you could lay or buy these amounts on the different points?
  • What is the house edge on this combination of bets that I make?
  • What is your opinion of betting equal amounts on the pass and don’t pass lines in craps and taking full odds on the pass line?
  • I understand that the house edge on the pass line and come is 1.414% but what is the edge by following a strategy that can have a combination of both active at the same time?
  • Your combined house edge table between the don’t pass and laying odds disagrees with every gambling writer I have seen address the topic, including the legendary John Scarne. Are you sure you’re right?
  • What is your opinion on influencing the dice?

Internet Gambling

  • Please add this casino to your blacklist.
  • I played at some casino and lost a lot, so they must be cheating. Please warn your readers.
  • Please analyze these transcripts of my play to see if the casino is cheating.
  • The casino asked for copies of my ID and utility bill. Is this normal?
  • How do online poker sites prevent collusion and how do I protect myself?
  • Where can I play the Boss Media blackjack game with a player advantage?

Gambler’s Fallacy

  • I disagree that if the ball has landed on red 20 times in a row that red and black are equally likely on the next spin.
  • The probability of getting 20 reds is very high, so if there have been 19 blacks then the next spin will almost certainly be black.
  • What is the probability of winning an even-money bet in roulette n times in a row?
  • You’re wrong. Black is more likely after a bunch of reds.

Gaming Math as a Career

  • Are you finished with the actuary exams? Do you do consulting on gambling for a living?
  • I want to follow in your footsteps as a gaming mathematician. Do you have any advice?

Las Vegas

  • What game(s) should I learn before my first trip to Vegas?
  • Where should I stay in Vegas?
  • I’m thinking of moving to Vegas. What’s it like to live there?

Miscellaneous

  • I invented my own casino game and want to market it.
  • What’s your favorite casino game?
  • What are the 2 or 3 best games to play in the casino?
  • Are you involved in options trading?
  • In a poker game with wild cards which is higher, a royal flush or five of a kind?
  • Do you have any advice for playing tournaments?
  • Why don’t you have any articles on money management?

Other Games

  • Do you have anything on Caribbean Draw Poker?
  • Have you analyzed the version of Caribbean Stud Poker where you can buy another card for the price of your ante bet?
  • Will you analyze this new game I found?

Probability

  • What is the probability of ...?
  • My friend and I have a disagreement about a probability question....
  • Can you show me why my calculations of the house edge for some game don’t match yours?
  • How do you select the random numbers for your simulations?
  • Which is more likely to win the lottery: a specific set of numbers, or randomly-chosen numbers?
  • If you roll three dice what is the probability of rolling at least one six?
  • How do the probabilities of making any given hand in five-card stud change according to the number of players?
  • How do I calculate the fair odds given the probability of winning a bet, and vice-versa?
  • I think you made a mistake with your slot machine probabilities.

Roulette

  • What do you think of the idea of betting two columns in roulette? This offers almost a 2/3 chance of winning.
  • Is there any pattern to the order of the numbers on the wheel?

This Website

  • Can I buy you dinner when I’m in Vegas?
  • Why did you create your site in the first place?
  • I can’t get the Java games to work.
  • I like the look of your site. Can I hire you to do one for me?
  • (I don’t trade links, period. Please don’t ask.)

Video Poker

  • Are video poker and video keno games fair?
  • How did you get your paytable analyzer program to run so fast?
  • Are the draw cards the next five cards in the deck, or is a replacement sitting behind each card dealt?
  • How did you calculate the total number of possible combinations of cards for the draw and the deal?
  • What is the expected return of this paytable?

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