Casino Games History or How People Have Learnt to Count Cards; part 1

The dream of capoting a casino is as old as the notion “casino” itself. Every gambler wants to win. Every other invents his own “system”. Every hundredth attempts to carefully analyze the game. And only the few of millions succeed.

The most famous achievement in the sphere of “system” game against the casino was the so called “card counting” at blackjack – mathematically based methods of game allowing to get some advantage over the casino. The casinos, surely, knows about the existence of “counters” and are trying to oppose them – from changing the rules to banning the game. Sometimes even exceeding the limits of reason and legality. In fact, all the history of the blackjack is the struggle between the gamblers and the casino which is more clever.

More than half a century passed since the first attempts of beating the casinos in blackjack, based not on the marked cards and intuition. There has been a peck of salt eaten since then, but the struggle is still going on….

Mammoth.

Probably the first person in history who applied mathematic analysis to the game blackjack was Jess Marcum (originally Marcovitch) was born on 30th December 1919.

It happened at the turn of 1949 and 1950, when Jess, being an excellent mathematician and physicist-theorist got to Las Vegas. Then his mathematic flair prompted him that most possibly not everything depends on intuition in blackjack.

Marcum started analyzing blackjack. First, the uniqueness of his attempt is that he performed absolutely all calculations with his pen on the paper, on principle without using any technologies whatever weak they might be at that time. Second he had found the solution!

Jess manually developed what is now called basic strategy and counting systems ten years before someone else has done that. He counted that theoretically he had an advantage over the casino of about 3% -under the conditions of that time it was quite real. Moreover, Markum had been playing blackjack in all known to him casinos- both in the USA and abroad. His name appeared on the pages of the newspapers as an example of “lucky man” who managed to hit the jackpot.

Jess Markum also went down to history as probably the first man thrown out from the casino because of cards. Though at that time casinos did not understand that such system existed. Jess lived in Las Vegas for about a year. The casino owners exchanged the information when they gathered at the general meeting. And they were terrified. After that Markum was not admitted at all Vegas casinos. He went to Reno. The same story- in half a year after unbelievable “luck” the casino owners started making inquiries about the incredible gambler. Then other states and cities. Then Cuba, the Bahamas. Nobody knows how much money he has won during that time. One thing is known for sure- in fact, Jess Markum started the war between the gamblers and casinos in blackjack, that is still going on and getting more and more strained.

He did not share his calculations with anyone, and completely gave up playing against casino after a wide public publication of blackjack methods by other authors.

Jess Markum died in 1992, at the age of 72.

The four of Neanderthals.

The next effort of great influence on the blackjack math was made in 1956 by the group of four mathematicians- Roger Baldwin, Wilbert E. Cantey, Herbert Maisel and James McDermott.

These people had never played in casino before, having spent a great number of m/hr, they created basic strategy of playing blackjack according to the most popular at that time rules and published it together with the calculation methods in the specialized math journal for statisticians – Journal of the American Statistical Association entitled “The Optimum Strategy In Blackjack”.

They made several slight mistakes in calculations which is nothing serious taking into account their enormous contribution. A year later they issued a small book Playing Blackjack to Win, which is now a bibliography rarity.

In fact their book and the article did not spark much furor, and remained almost without attention regardless of their innovative approach. However, the word almost turned out to be the key for all the gambling industry, as someone did paid close attention to the research of the excellent four.

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Online Casinos – Error Free Dealers

With the coming of online casinos, gone are the days of the dealer making a big error, and making the players pay for it by wasting their time fixing up the problem. The last time I was at a casino playing roulette, the dealer made an error when spinning the ball, and it ended up taking 1 hour to fix. What an absolute waste of my precious time, and I didn’t even get an apology. That problem has been solved with the advent of online casinos. Online casino dealers are absolutely perfect and never make any errors. What advantages does this offer a player? It offers several advantages, including the following:

1) Faster Game Play

Games won’t be stopped and brought to a halt due to an incompetent dealers bad dealings. You will experience much faster game play, far more superior to that of any human dealer.

2) Error Free Results

If you win $100, you will get paid exactly $100. You will never get ripped off, which means more profits in the long term, especially if you never keep track of all your payouts.

3) More Professional Service

Since an online dealer is absolutely perfect, they will give you a better, more professional service every single time. Online dealers never a bad day, and they never get angry, frustrated, or behave rudely.

I’m very happy with the service I’ve been getting from my online casino dealer! Since returning to the local land based casino and receiving bad service from real life human dealers, I have since learned why I started betting at online casinos in the first place.

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Playing Online Blackjack for Free

Do you love to play blackjack, but you don’t have a casino nearby? There are many places that will allow you to play online blackjack for free. This is a good way to get better at the game and it is also a great way to have fun with your favorite hobby. Here are some of the things you should know about free online blackjack.

Finding out about playing free online blackjack can be very easy because there are sites that are dedicated to it. It just depends on what you are trying to find because some sites will let you play for free and others just have free information. Some of the sites might teach you how to employ card counting strategies or how to make money while playing online blackjack.

Most of the sites that you can play free casino games like blackjack will also offer a paid option if you want to gamble a little bit. This is not something you should do if you cannot afford to gamble, but if you want to learn how to play blackjack online for money this is a good way to start.

There are a few different ways that blackjack is played online including the flash version and the multiplayer games. Some websites will make you download a program to play online, but others will have the game available with no download at all. It just depends on the site you choose and how they are set up.

You can learn the rules, systems, strategies, history, and definitions that go along with blackjack from one of these sites. This will help you if you are planning a trip to Las Vegas or to any other area with a casino. If you don’t know how to play the game yet playing it on online for free can really help you to learn before you go play for money.

Free blackjack online is also good for meeting other people. Some of the casino sites that offer blackjack for free will also have a chat feature. This allows you to talk to other players through an instant message program that goes right with the game. You could meet a new friend or even find someone to fall in love with by playing blackjack with other players.

Whether you decide you just want to play online blackjack for free or you want to play for real money it is important to understand the rules of the game first. If you already know the rules and you just want to hone your strategies, then you can try playing free online blackjack first, then switching over to playing for real money once you know your strategy works well.

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West Virginia Blackjack – West Virginia Casinos

For a long time, gamblers in West Virginia had to travel somewhere else to play blackjack games, craps games, roulette games, etc. The only casino gambling action available to them was slot machine gambling and horse betting. But recently, Wheeling Island Gaming and Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort received permission to add table games to their offerings. So the gamblers who used to travel to Indiana can now get their blackjack fix a little closer to home.

Blackjack isn’t the only new game that’s available to gamblers in the area. Texas holdem grows ever more popular, and both of the locations already mentioned now have poker card rooms where aspiring Doyle Brunsons can now go all-in and hope they don’t get a bad flop.

Wheeling Island Gaming

Wheeling Island Gaming is located on an island in the Ohio River. The casino offers a tropical island ambience including a waterfall and multiple faux-palm trees. The island itself is only about 2 miles long, and Wheeling Island Casino offers several restaurants and bars. Be warned that this casino is extremely popular, and the blackjack games there are a big attraction. You should be prepared to wait if you want to play blackjack at any stakes lower than $50 per hand. (The higher stakes tables aren’t as crowded.)

Gamblers who are tired of slot machines, blackjack, and craps can step outside and spend some time betting on the dog races that are also offered at the location. Or if you’re not the rough and rugged outdoors-y type, you can watch the races from inside as well.

Mountaineer Casino Racetrack

The Mountaineer Casino Racetrack is located in the countryside, somewhat removed from the rest of civilization. Like Wheeling Island Gaming, the Mountaineer offers multiple restaurants and bars. They have a radically different decor and theme though, favoring a 1920′s gangster/speakeasy decor over the tropical island theme present at Wheeling Island. The casino is a little bit larger, and finding a lower stakes blackjack table with a seat open is a little bit easier here.

And if you get tired of gambling, a golf resort is located nearby, so you can get some fresh air and exercise while taking a break from the tables and the slot machines.

Some Blackjack Advice

If you’re new to blackjack strategy, here are a few tips for how to minimize the house edge:

When you’re not sure about the correct play, assume that the dealer has a ten as her hole card, and also assume that you’re going to be dealt a ten. The deck has more tens in it than any other card, so this is a decent assumption about what’s going to happen next, and the basic strategy decisions become pretty obvious.
Always split aces and eights. If you’ve got aces, you get twice as many chances at a blackjack by splitting. And you’ll often draw a ten when you hit. 10+8=18, which is a mighty respectable blackjack hand any time.
Never split fours, fives, or tens. A pair of fours is a hard total of eight, which means you’re next card, if it’s a ten, will be an eighteen, which is a mighty good hand. (Two hands with a total of fourteen each would be a bummer to play though.) A pair of fives is a total of ten, so doubling down is a good idea here, since you’re hoping to catch an ace for a 21 or a ten for a total of 20. And a pair of tens is a total of 20, which is an outstanding hand no matter what.
Don’t play with money you can’t afford to lose.
For more blackjack strategy advice, including a hand-by-hand guide to basic strategy, visit Blackjack Hero’s blackjack basic strategy tutorial.
To practice a little blackjack online before your tips, try the free blackjack games available with no download at Free Flash Blackjack.

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