Recent AI-related research listed the skills needed to become a star gambler. Findings basically were that a successful gambler had to be armed with six crucial skills one of which is not replicable through AI.
The skillset included individual and social skills that rarely adorn one single individual. These are:
- Math skills; while you do not need to have Nash’s mind you do need to understand the arithmetic’s of the game you are playing and in the case of slot machines you need to command probabilities which are math-based;
- To be savvy about risk: you need to fully understand the nature and frequency of the risks entailed in the game you are playing. Again, math is essential to understand probabilities and the size of bounties and losses.
- Concentration: You can hardly win if you are daydreaming or thinking about things unrelated to the game you are playing. Successful gambling demands concentration.
- People skills: lest you play slot machines, people skills are fundamental in succeeding at gambling. Best gamblers are amicable and courteous. They enjoy competing and make people around feel happy and fulfilled by participating in the game.
- To be realistic: You need to know probability and how it works. Understanding the concept of an independent event is fundamental. You should also understand concepts like short-term deviation and the Law of Large Numbers. Further, understanding the gamblers’ fallacy is essential. This entails understanding that past events have no bearing on current plays when those results are independent events.
- Think Long term: Successful gamblers resemble investors. They are masters in repeatedly handling the laws of small ROI’s.
In the short run, when you are dealing with random outcomes, anything can happen. But in the long run, the Law of Large Numbers operates, bringing the results of your bets close to the mathematical expectation.
As you might understand it is very difficult to create through AI people skills. But you can figure out who could become a great gambler through knowledge of those individuals that excelled at the trade. Among them, the following have excelled through time. A close examination of each brings to the forefront the presence of all six skills.
Edward Thorp: a math professor who wrote the book on card counting. Beat the Dealer was the first book about card counting that mathematically demonstrated that you could beat the house edge in blackjack by tracking the ratio of high cards to low cards left in the deck.
Billy Walters with a lucky streak of 30-year Mr. Walters is considered to be the most successful sports bettor in the history of sports betting streak. But he also is a very successful entrepreneur as he has invested in real estate, car dealing and other businesses with equal success.
Sean Creighton; The uncontestable king of Parlay bets. Mr. Creighton succeeded at Parlay bets through his mastery of mathematics and probabilities. At a very young age, he created his own Parley bets place to then with the proceeds create 5Dimes, a most successful sports betting platform.
Don Johnson: a businessman and a gambler who won over $15 million playing blackjack, without resorting to the counting cards technique in blackjack. He insisted on blackjack rules that gave the house a small edge of only 0.26%.The MIT Blackjack Team: established in 1979. The team recruits players through flyers posted at colleges. Selection however is very though and picky as admission to the team demands math fluency. Prospective teammates have to pass a test, then they are thoroughly trained. Before being allowed to play with the team’s money, they have to demonstrate perfect play to the team’s management. Besides traditional card counting techniques, the MIT Blackjack Team uses shuffle tracking and ace tracking techniques. The Team’s techniques give them an edge over the casino in the 2% to 4% range.