Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Lakon, Sep 3, 2013.

  1. Lakon Valued Senior Member


    A roulette wheel spin is a purely random event. Each spin has exactly the same probability irrespective of past results.

    The chances of red/black (or odds/even, high/low) occuring in the next spin are ALWAYS and forever 1/2 (ignoring the zero/s for the moment) no matter what the past results.

    Thus, if 10 blacks had occurred in a row in the immediate preceding 10 spins, the probability of red in the next spin is 1/2. The probability of black is also 1/2.

    An event of 'ten blacks followed by one red', has exactly the same probability as 'eleven blacks'.

    No amount of computing or tailoring of past results, will increase your chances of picking, say 'red' in the next spin - it will always have a probability of 1/2, regardless (continuing to ignore the zero/s for the moment).

    Anyone who believes they tailored past results to determine future ones is, consistent with this forums (physics / maths) strict requirements a complete crackpot.

    In the 'Mathematics Of Horse Race Gambling' thread, poster Tach continues to believe and assert that he somehow tailored past results to derive a benefit / profit from future ones, therefore his is a complete crackpot.
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  3. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Pssst .. and Tach, just in case you defer to 'bias' as your escape clause, here's what you said about that;

    I did not base my bidding on the "roulette bias". You obviously did not comprehend my post ..

    Just in case.
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  5. Farsight

    Good stuff Lakon. People can have some strange beliefs when it comes to probability. They say things like it's come up black three times in a row, I'm going to bet on red. There's usually a bit of alcohol involved, and maybe a girl on an arm, and when red does come up it's a whole lot of fun. So much so that even if there was no zero, people would still end up leaving the table only when they'd lost their shirt.
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  7. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Thanks Farsight.

    I am most interested in the fact that my initial post has been up now, for close to a day, and not one moderator or accomplished mathematician has argued with, or rejected any of my propositions in it. I'm sure had there been any error in it, they would be quick to do so - as I would indeed fully expect.

    More soon..ish.
  8. Farsight

    Did I say on the other thread that one can allegedly beat the house playing blackjack? If you stick to the rule card, you improve your own odds. The last time I went to a casino I won at blackjack. But doing this is boring. It's more like work than gambling, it's no fun at all.

    Did you read about the Phil Ivey punto branco case? See this: punto banco rake. And note this bit:

    "Countless poker legends, from Johnny Moss to T.J. Cloutier, have lost huge sums of money won through brilliant play at the poker table in a few passes of the dice at the craps table. Such is the life of a gambler. Like Chico Marx once said, 'A sure thing is no fun.'"
  9. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    That right there seems like lunacy... at least if you stretch it out a little further. It's come out black twelve times in a row so there's a high probabilty that it will come out red this time. If anything, twelve blacks in a row (probability 1 in 4096) might mean that there's something wrong with the wheel and it's biased toward black!

    I have a foolproof strategy for casino gambling. I go into the restaurant, order dinner, and fill out a Keno card. But I do NOT hand the card to the Keno runner. I just hold onto it and look at the screen when the results pop up. Since my card would have lost, I effectively SAVED one dollar. At the end of a meal and a few drinks, I've saved six or seven bucks!

    I've been doing this for 35 years, and my cards have never won. I figure I've come out several hundred dollars ahead.

    You can't win at blackjack when they play with multiple decks and reshuffle before they're even halfway through.

    It's been said that only gamblers really understand probability, but they don't use that skill rationally.

    A good poker player will always beat an average player in the long run. But only if he sticks with poker!
  10. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Fraggle Rocker and Farsight, thank you for your interesting posts. I will reply / comment soon.


    I again observe that though my OP was made now 2 days ago, no moderator or serious mathematician has taken issue with it.

    Before I proceed to take up a very specific issue I have with another poster in a nearby thread, I would like to also make the following statements. These all relate to a fair roulette wheel - the zero is ignored for the moment, for convenience - this does no harm to either side of the argument (in fact, it slightly benefits argument opposite to mine, but no matter).

    - The probability of a sequence RRRRRRRRRRR (11 reds) occurring is IDENTICAL to the probability of RRRRRRRRRRB (ten reds and one black).

    - The probability of RRRRRBBBBBR occurring is IDENTICAL to the probability of BBBBBRRRRRB occurring.

    - In fact the probability of BBRBBBRRRBR (any random series) occurring is identical to the probability of RBBBRRBRBRR (any other random series of the same number) occurring.

    - Though the series RRRRRRRRRRR (11 reds) looks rather pretty and alluring, it is, probabilistically, in no way special or unique to ANY OTHER random series of the same number of spin results.

    Agreed so far ? Yes or no ?

    - THERREFORE to say that ANY series ( 10 reds for instance) in some mysterious way or another, increases the probability of the next spin being black, or gives you any information about an increased likelihood of the next spin being black, is lunacy - superstition (commonly referred to in these strict mathematics forums as crackpottery.

    Yes or no ?

    PS; Here’s two common definitions of ‘superstition’

    1. An irrational belief that an object, action, or circumstance not logically related to a course of events influences its outcome.
    a. A belief, practice, or rite irrationally maintained by ignorance of the laws of nature or by faith in magic or chance.
    b. A fearful or abject state of mind resulting from such ignorance or irrationality.
    c. Idolatry.
    1. a belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge, in or of the ominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance, occurrence, proceeding, or the like.
    2. a system or collection of such beliefs.
    3. a custom or act based on such a belief.
    4. irrational fear of what is unknown or mysterious, especially in connection with religion.
    5. any blindly accepted belief or notion.
  11. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Yes, odds (probability) are changed for future events as each card is drawn. If you see four aces dealt out in the first few hands, you obviously know that there are no more (in a single deck game) to be dealt until the next shuffle. I guess that's where card counting comes in, and why casinos frown on it, and protect against it by using 4 decks and shuffling them often - and sometimes 1/3 the way through.

    No, I hadn't seen this. Yes, one can be a brilliant poker player, using skill, talent, psychology, counting, etc. I used to play 'manila' in my younger days - a form of "7's up" five card hand poker - very popular amongst Greeks. Oh, boy - do I recall some serious bluffing going on. More often than not, it was he who could bluff / scare the other players the most, who came up winning.

    Yes, once Clouter hit the craps table he surrendered himself to absolute chance - as in roulette (I've never played craps - I'm assuming it's always the role of two dice .. or is that 2 die)

    The link sounds interesting. I'll read it shortly.

    Edit: ^ I just read it. A facinating story. It confirms all we've said so far here.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
  12. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Lol .. there was an old saying I used to quote liberally to my investment clients - "the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent"
    I guess we can aplly this to roulette thus "the wheel can stay improbable longer than you can stay solvent"

    Yes, some roulette bias may have existed a hundred years ago. Casinos woke up to it VERY quickly and every wheel now has (and has had for decades) low wall pockets and regular checking.

    Lol .. I see your wisdom. Another investment quote I had up my sleeve for some folk was "(on this deal) if you want to double your money, fold it over and put it back in your wallet"

    Agree entirely.
  13. Lakon Valued Senior Member

  14. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    In the Mathematics Of Horse Race Gambling thread, Tach said;
    I figured that there was no way the management would let them play if their program was any good, so I tailored my bets to be exactly the opposite of theirs. One hour later I left with an extra 800 EUR in my pocket.

    To that, I queried;
    So you profited from betting the opposite to someone who was losing - that's what your statement amounts to. Ergo, you, anyone can duplicate this. Go to any casino, and bet opposite to anyone losing ..

    No sensible, informative or scientific reply was forthcoming from Tach.
    Only evasiveness in the form of trolling, mainly with the use of many vague obscenities and clichés (see posts 20 - 30 in that thread). In fact, in post 30 he actually used the word 'pensioner' as one of derision - what kind of a mind is it that does such a thing .. ?

    Subsequent attempts by me to get Tach to address the issue proved quite fruitless - Tach just focused on the trivial, the odd spelling error, etc, - an obvious attempt to divert attention from his crackpottery and to to pull the discussion down some inane, trollish tit for tat ..

    Circa posts 30 - 40 in that thread, Tachs vast crackpottery and superstition become more apparent ..

    Tach; their algorithm wasn't worth anything

    followed by ..

    Tach; "I tailored my bets to be exactly the opposite of theirs"

    Which immediately begs these most obvious questions;

    1) If it wasn't worth anything (i.e., had no useful information of any worth) then it was worthless. His .. tailoring .. then, must have been equally worthless.

    2) How could it be, that the operators of that machine/algorithm wouldn't have made a similar observation of opposite value - if such indeed existed ?
    They must have been working with it for days, weeks, months, years .. how could they not notice ? It took the great .. Tach to come along and pick up on this ? This is absolute delusion and superstition on Tachs part, and naive in the extreme.

    3) Also. it has never seemed to penetrate Tachs superstition and naivety, that to have a machine or algorithm that was giving consistent negative results, (sufficient as to allow for profit by betting on the opposite of those results, i.e., black for red, etc ) is IDENTICAL to having a machine giving consistent positive results.

    Posts circa 40 - 52 in that thread, are replete with ongoing attempts on my part to get his to address this issue, and with increasing obfuscation and trolling to avoid the issue, on his part.

    In post 53 I offered him a link to the wiki 'Gamblers Fallacy' page, and suggested he was suffering from this.

    His response in post 54 ..
    -Nope, nothing to do with that, keep trying, you might get it. Most likely, not.
    -Nope, nothing to do with this either, I gave you a simple hint, to a simple exercise, you are answering by trawling all the non-applicable quotes from wiki. You are trying to do math the way Farsight is "doing physics".

    Denial and continued obfuscation - and dragging another innocent, unrelated party into the bargain, irrespective of my ongoing attempts to progress the discussion and come to a conclusion. If nothing to do with Gamblers Fallacy, then what ? What's wrong with the math ?
    Why imply error with some snide reference to another party, thus besmirching that party, also?
    These are physics / maths forums. Why continue trolling ? Because most likely I wouldn't get it ???
    Utter trolling!

    Another, or should I say "another"(LOL) poster then posted on that thread, and took the discussion back to horse racing. I agreed that we shouldn't go too far off topic so I opened this thread to continue to discuss roulette.

    Tach was NOT very happy about this .. and here he also shows himself to be a coward, because although he had vacillated, squealed, and squirmed .. anything to avoid getting to the point up until now, he .. in post #66, quickly rendered (so as to avoid being further ridiculed in another thread) the following exposition ...

    It is very simple, really, if you observe someone placing loosing bids for long runs (hint) and you place the opposite of their bid, you are bound to win for long runs.

    GASP !!!!

    Is that IT ???

    This is total, 100% SUPERSTITION !

    NO amount of past information, will give you any useful information about the future (in roulette) - the crackpot said it himself, earlier, viz; "their algorithm wasn't worth anything"

    No proposition I have put in my OP and post #7 in this thread has been refuted by any serious mathematician on these forums, as indeed, it would have been and should have been had it been in error.

    Here's a quick true little story;
    Last night, around the dinner table of the Lakon family and friends household (7 adults and one 13 year old) I was thinking about this, and during a quite moment, I took the opportunity to ask them all ..

    "If you were playing roulette and got 10 reds in a row, what are the chances of the next spin being black" ?
    Without exception, all jumped in and their own manner, invariably said "very likely" to "almost certain"

    Well, almost all ..

    The 13 year old screamed the loudest over the top of all of them, threw a baked potato at his older brother who was the most animated (a 23 year old full time, final year university student) and said ..


    Much mirth (and flying vegetables, etc) ensued .. and I had to spend quite a considerable period of time in convincing them of that fact, and made a point to loudly brag about how clever and clear thinking the 13yo was, and promised to double his pocket money for the whole month of September .. what a guy ..

    I have never studied maths, never studied probability theory, let alone relativity theory, etc.

    Tach even mentioned probability theory somewhere .. back then .. in the other thread .. several times in fact.

    So what happened ?

    How can this, ostensible master of mathematics, of all things mathematical, of all things scientific and of all things physic, get such a simple, basic principle wrong ?

    It would be excusable for the common man to get it wrong (viz. the adults 'round my dinner table).

    But Tach ?

    This master of mathematics ?

    This slayer of all cranks ?

    This destroyer of all crackpottery ?


    And what reliance can anyone place on anything else - any far more complex issues he's .. emm .. advised on in these strict physics / maths forums, let alone in the more liberal forums ?

    Indeed, being as self abused as he is of this egregious error concerning probability, how can one have ANY RELIANCE WHATSOEVER about ANY issue he's pretended to understand, be informed about, or be educated in ? It could even be considered more appropriate to take a position or belief OPPOSITE to what he's stated.

    Look - anyone can make a mistake.
    But there is however, one thing far worse than all the above in the case of our Tach. And that is, his lack of admission to error. This is a dastardly thing for a scientist, a dastardly, cowardly thing, particularly when he's mostly if not always, the first to put the boot into anyone else, and in a most rude, inconsiderate and demeaning way. This is as fine a definition of hypocrisy as you could ever see.

    So in sum, Tach, you are possessed with, and self abused of, a most egregious error concerning a most simple, basic mathematical issue. You have refused to admit it and to resile from it, and you have tried to troll your way out of it.


    (and that's just for starters ..)

    Edit - cut/paste missed last two lines, now fixed.
  15. Tach Banned Banned

    The opposite of worthless is something useful. This has been explained to you several times already, you do not need to open yet another thread in order to demonstrate the fact that you cannot understand a simple narrative.

    Well, this has been explained to you as well, they may or may not have noticed (unimportant) but the casino owners did (and this is important). As such, the owners let them play, rather than throw them out. Really simple, don't understand why you have such a hard time grasping it.

    Who knows? Who cares? The fact that the owners didn't throw them out means that they weren't winning.

    All that I watched was that their algorithm gave incorrect results for the one hour I played. This has also been explained to you but, for some reason, you still fail to grasp it.

    Well, the approach has nothing to do with the "Gambler's Fallacy". This is your fallacy in terms of thinking that it does. This has also been explained to you several times already.

    Yep, that's it, nothing to do with you conflating the above strategy with the "Gambler's Fallacy". This was too, explained to you more than once.
  16. Lakon Valued Senior Member


    I never fully appreciated the full extent of the label 'troll', as used on the internet, until these recent discussions with you. You are a pretender at most other things, but not at trolling.

    All you've basically done in the above post, is repeated your superstition and crackpottery . You haven't advanced your explanation one bit.

    I was on the verge of again, doing a detailed response to each and every one of your words so as to further typify your superstition and crackpottery, but in the end, it comes down to this;

    You said;
    Well, the approach has nothing to do with the "Gambler's Fallacy". This is your fallacy in terms of thinking that it does. This has also been explained to you several times already.

    Really ?

    You mentioned probability theory a couple of times but I see you've abandoned that, knowing how grievously you violated it. The only other explanation you've given, is;

    It is very simple, really, if you observe someone placing loosing bids for long runs (hint) and you place the opposite of their bid, you are bound to win for long runs.

    Is that it then ? Is that the sum total of your theory ? If not, give a complete explanation for it in your next post, otherwise we can assume that the above is it.
  17. Tach Banned Banned

    Wrong, it is the same explanation.

    There is more to it but one simple fact at a time, you need to try to understand the basic facts first. You have had a lot of difficulty with the above. You still have.
  18. Lakon Valued Senior Member

    Right .. lets start with the basic facts;

    Tach; It is very simple, really, if you observe someone placing loosing bids for long runs (hint) and you place the opposite of their bid, you are bound to win for long runs

    - Why do you need to observe someone placing losing bids and bet opposite them ? Why not observe someone placing winning bids and bet with them ?

    - Why need to observe others at all ?

    - How long is a 'run' ?

    Clear that up first. Be specific. Don't detract or vacillate.
  19. Tach Banned Banned

    It is not just an ordinary, random "someone placing losing bids". This was explained to you several times already, since I made the original post in the other thread. I suggest that you go back to the other thread and you read the explanation. Beats your incessant trolling on the subject.
  20. Fednis48 Registered Senior Member

    Tach, let me summarize what is confusing me, and what I think is confusing Lakon. In principle, of course it's possible to win on average by betting against a strategy that loses on average. And if you observe a group of players for long enough to conclude that their performance is worse than chance with high probability, I suppose you would be right to conclude that betting against them would be a winning strategy. But:

    1. I went back and read the original post, and it doesn't sound like you did any patient statistical analysis before you jumped in. You just "figured that there was no way the management would let them play if their program was any good", which while true, is no basis to conclude that their program was worse than random chance.

    2. To prevent people like Jarecki from gaming the system, I'm sure casinos go to great lengths to ensure that their is no pattern to the randomness at their roulette tables. Even with perfect analysis, I doubt that anyone could come up with predictions that are meaningfully correlated with the outcomes. The idea that someone could use flawed analysis to come up with predictions that are meaningfully anti-correlated with the outcomes is just too unlikely to be entertained.
  21. Tach Banned Banned

    Casinos have the best specialists against any form of winning against the house. This is proof enough that the algorithm developed by the two laptop owners was flawed. Since it was flawed, it was bound for long dry runs (which it did). Exploiting one such long dry run made me 800 EUR richer in one hour. You can try it too, provided that the laptop owners are still there.

    Correct, the textbook I linked in showed exactly that.

    Yet, the contrary proved to be true, betting against a flawed algorithm resulted into a winning strategy.

    Experiment showed the exact opposite, clearly trumping your above elaboration, hence I walked away with 800 EUR, simply by betting against the algorithm developers.
  22. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Tach: If you walked away 800 Euros ahead, you were just lucky. The house edge applies to every bet made at a roulette table. There is no strategy which loses worse in the long run. Playing counter to any strategy still loses at the rate indicated by the house edge, which is circa 5% for an American wheel & about half that for a European wheel.

    Lucky you might have been. Knowledgable relating to probabilty you are not.

    An ignormaus might take a bet at ten to one that he can draw the Ace of Spades from a 52 card deck. He might win that bet, but it is still a dumb bet & he was lucky. Correct odds are 51 to one against.

    If you won 800 Euros, you were lucky. You really did not have a winning strategy.

    The story about the player who won millions due to a faulty roulette wheel is pure fiction. Roulette wheels cost perhaps $50 to $100, surely not more than $500-1000. Casinos win millions in a year from roulette players. They do not allow wheels to become biased from wear. New wheels are surely not biased. I doubt that a wheel could become faulty enough to allow the house edge to be beaten.

    No engineer ever discovered a biased wheel & made money playing against it. Such a story is a outright lie. I admit that it is possible that casino Public Relations people might plant such a story, but it is still a myth, not a valid news item. I have seen such stories in news papers & always imagined a group of casino owners complaining about a decline in system players at the roulette tables.
    I never noticed anyone at a European table collecting data about the numbers which occurred. I have seen such people in Vegas & Reno. I know that the forms used being are by shops in both Vegas & Reno.

    BTW: Casinos do not mind the use of such forms to collect data. They know it will not discover any strategy whch can beat the house edge in the long run.
  23. Tach Banned Banned

    You may have missed the fact that I wasn't betting against the house.

    Yep, you definitely missed the fact that I wasn't betting against the house. The same way you missed the explanation on dr. Jarecki.

    well, if you cannot follow the argument , it is your loss.

    Actually, dr. Jarecki's story is documented, I provided you with the links, I do not know why you insist in your world of fanatasy.

    I do not know why you repeat this falsity, especially since you have been provided with evidence to the contrary.

    History says that you are wrong. And in denial.

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