The Origin of Black Jack


The game of twenty-one was brought to the United States of America in the 19th century but it wasn’t until the mid 20th century that a strategy was created to beat the house in Blackjack. This material is going to grab a quick peak at the creation of that system, Card Counting.

When betting was made legal in Nevada in ‘34, Blackjack sky-rocketed into universal appeal and was usually wagered on with 1 or 2 decks of cards. Roger Baldwin published a paper in 1956 which detailed how to lower the casino advantage built on probability and statistics which was very complicated for those who weren’t mathematicians.

In ‘62, Dr. Edward O. Thorp used an IBM 704 computer to enhance the mathematical strategy in Baldwin’s dissertation and also created the 1st card counting techniques. Dr. Thorp authored a book called "Beat the Dealer" which detailed card counting techniques and the practices for reducing the casino advantage.

This spawned a massive increase in black jack gamblers at the US casinos who were attempting to put into practice Dr. Ed Thorp’s strategies, much to the confusion of the casinos. The strategy was challenging to understand and hard to put into practice and thusly heightened the earnings for the casinos as more and more folks took to playing chemin de fer.

However this huge increase in earnings wasn’t to continue as the gamblers became more highly developed and more aware and the system was further perfected. In the 1980’s a bunch of students from Massachusetts Institute of Technology made counting cards a part of the day-to-day vernacular. Since then the casinos have introduced numerous methods to counteract card counters including but not limited to, multiple decks, shoes, constant shuffle machines, and rumour has it, complex computer software to observe body language and identify "cheaters". While not prohibited being caught counting cards will get you barred from most casinos in sin city.

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