Colin Jones (S1 E5): Dark Matter

As early as webpage 11 of The 21st-Century Card
Counter
, Colin Jones mentions the monolithic real truth of the universe: “the
team’s efficiency was constantly reduce than the math predicted.” These has
been the encounter of every workforce in the historical past of AP, and each solo card
counter, too.

When teams search at their spreadsheet and see the stark hole concerning AV (True Price) and EV (Expected Worth), they have a puzzled look like this is some terrific thriller. The only thriller is why rookie groups ignore the answer that I’m about to explain for the nth time. [PRO TIP FTW: use “nth” the next time you play Hangman.]

There are four solutions specified for “underperformance.” The initially
is the scapegoat provided by APs in denial (commonly the initially three years of a
career, and extending to an overall job for the degen-cum-faux-AP): variance.
I would like to make a term cloud of the on-line posts manufactured by rookies, and
review it to the term cloud of productive veterans. In the rookie’s term
cloud: “EV”, “one place or two”, “side count”, “cheating”, “optimal wager ramp”, “6:5”,
“side bet”, “VARIANCE”, “3 s.d.”, “facial recognition”. In the veteran’s phrase
cloud: “exposure”, “BP”, “chip inventory”, “CTR”, “phone call”, “6:5”, “verbals”,
“NERSESIAN”.

By aggregating the efficiency of numerous gamers, groups like CJ’s
can get a significant adequate sample sizing to see that underperformance isn’t just lousy
luck. The AV line on the graph is consistently underneath the EV line, and the hole
just widens. I have an announcement, my readers: The time has come …

It’s TIME TO REJECT THE NULL! The “unlucky” gamers have an
implicit null speculation (“the null”) that their hourly EV is a specified volume,
say, $100/hour. When “bad luck” inevitably takes place (of training course, they simply call this “negative
variance”), they estimate and re-calculate and re-work out the EV of
different eventualities and sport problems to reply the question “How unlucky was
I?” At this position I simply cannot say they are mis-applying application, since the program
serves its reason if the AP now draws the ideal summary from what the
software package is telling them. The application claims, “If your null speculation is true—meaning
you truly are playing a $100/hour game—then you have evidently experienced a -3
s.d. party. You are 3 common deviations below EV.”

At this instant, a details scientist with no moi in the recreation would
say, “Hmm, I doubt that I come about to have observed a -3 s.d. party. Almost certainly my
null hypothesis isn’t genuine.” The in-denial “AP” claims, “I’m the unluckiest
player who at any time performed this recreation. You men have no plan what it is like to be
this unlucky. The software package will not tell me regardless of whether I was born unlucky or whether
it is something I contracted by currently being all around all these losers in the on line casino.” Will
it get a 4-s.d. function for these APs to reject the null? For most uses,
experts reject the null at 3 s.d. (or 5 s.d. for some purposes where by
everyday living-and-loss of life could be in participate in), and they seem for a speculation that superior
describes the knowledge, this sort of as: “My EV is $50/hour.”

When you minimize the EV in 50 %, suddenly the graph seems to be
best! Voila! Mystery solved! TML.

So our dilemma evolves from “Why is our AV so considerably under EV?”
to “Why is our authentic-earth EV so significantly down below the on-paper/laptop EV?” This issue
is also not a mystery. I promised 4 resources of underperformance, and we
dispatched the first—variance—as bogus. But the next 3 are real, however
frequently unseen (consequently “dark matter”).

A authentic problem dealing with each individual workforce is skimming. Its quite a few forms
are rampant in the AP community. I know you could not think that, and I did not
either, but when your details sample grows as large as mine, you, also, will settle for
skimming as an inconvenient truth of the matter. (The reaction, “That’s why I participate in solo,” is an
overreaction taken primarily by rationalizing, arrogant, social misfits.) I’ll
have much additional to say about skimming in later posts, but as significantly as CJ’s e book, I
want CJ experienced a chapter about it. Not only do I have a voyeuristic curiosity, but
it may advantage all of us to see how a sophisticated AP staff offers with the trouble.

That reported, I understand that CJ wouldn’t want to inflame
tensions within just the AP community (we all know each and every other below) by publicly
outing ex-teammates who are suspected of skimming. Each and every author has a eyesight of
what the guide must be. If the author’s vision is “uplifting, inspiring docudrama”
(is that what the Bible is supposed to be?), then we can forgive the omission
of filthy laundry. (But possibly a paragraph or two in the subsequent edition discussing
skimming in the abstract? Just throwin’ that out there.)

In any case, spanning all AP groups, probably skimming accounts for 10% of authentic-earth underperformance, probably none if you have a good crew, perhaps additional if you are the West Coast Grinders (who understands? No one talks about WCG.) Let’s get to the larger leads to of underperformance.

Lots of card counters obsess about guess spreads, obtaining
favorable guidelines, and taking part in with go over. And these are all worthwhile. But incredibly
handful of card counters I have met contemplate the substantial impression of rounds per hour.

Yeah, I really should have place quotation marks all over that past
paragraph. It’s from p. 124 of CJ’s ebook, but he nailed it so hard there, that
I considered plagiarizing it was the transfer.

APs run sims assuming 100 rounds/hour for blackjack, and most likely
50 rounds/hour for carnival games. Where by did all those figures come from? They make
the arithmetic more simple. That’s like expressing, “let’s just use 3 for the benefit of
pi, mainly because it makes the arithmetic simpler. In fact, the price 2 is easier
still.” But those people benchmark figures could be way off for the game at hand. For
carnival games, often only 20 rounds/hour is real looking, with sustained 50-60
rounds for each hour feasible only beneath the juiciest conditions—a heads-up activity
wherever the seller is maxing out the equipment (the hand is over and the seller has
to hold out for the equipment to finish shuffling the other deck), with no fills,
card modifications, or recurring buy-ins from shedding. For recurring targets, I like to
count the range of hands in an hour, and use that to advise sport range on
long term outings.

CJ invested the time to do an experiment tallying blackjack
sport speed beneath unique ailments. The success look in a chart on page 129
in the part “The Most Neglected Way to Enhance EV as a Card Counter.”
Velocity is so essential that a spotter in a large-edge recreation may possibly forgo a marginal
split if the additional time (dealers can be quite sluggish to re-prepare all the playing cards
and bets on a cramped format) would sacrifice yet another round.

So the underperformance is 10% skim and 40% speed, but what
about the other 50%? I’ve bought undesirable information for you. Your video game requirements get the job done, child. Oh,
you are in the Blackjack Hall of Fame already? Yeah, well, your sport desires get the job done,
old male.

It’s feasible that I’ve found more APs on a desk than
any person, simply because each individual time I perform there’s a different AP at the table! From
observing my personal teammates more than the yrs, which includes numerous Hall of Famers, I
know how typical faults are. Errors are rampant. I’d estimate that a rookie
will make some miscalculation each individual 5 minutes, and straightforward failure of the Raindrop Test
would signify a miscalculation on every single hand.

On webpage 15, CJ notes: “When we re-examined the complete team,
more than 50 % the gamers could not move the exam they’d earlier aced.” And
that is on top rated of the actuality that in the wild, there are quite a few means to screw up
that the at-residence check won’t pick up. When there’s precise funds on the line, a
grumpy accommodate perspiring blood, a toke-hustling seller, and a vigilante “we-do not-contact-tender-18
or break up Tens” degen lynch mob, does the counter make the EV-maximizing transfer?

The 3-s.d. men on-line would say they aren’t generating
errors, and sometimes even say that they experienced a mate look at them out. Which is
all nonsense, of course. There’s a massive difference in between a examination that anyone
prepares for, and a pop-quiz. I do pop quizzes. I sneak up on my teammates and
check out them from behind. I rely down the card counters who sit at my desk. I engage in
although other gamers at the table are attempting to HC. I have even been at a table
participating in my game although two card counters (who had been wonging out of negatives),
oblivious to who I am, were being standing behind me speaking about the guide Outside of
Counting
(a very amusing discussion!).

I can ensure that each individual AP out there is generating blunders
they’re not even knowledgeable of. We could commence with system. Does an AP truly know
the system for the sport at hand? I not too long ago created some observe software
for my crew, for the pretty game titles that we participate in each individual working day. Without the need of extensive
apply on the software package, none of us could get a excellent check of just 33
palms. And I’m very self-confident that any person who does not have access to these kinds of software
would be a catastrophe.

For a HC player, we could converse about the weak data. I’ve
ranted about Paint blindness for yrs, but when place to the test, everybody is
awful. A few teammates of mine did better than the average for attendees of
the Blackjack Ball, but they’re nowhere close to personal computer-optimal, and they do not
even know their Paint charts. (I worked challenging to make those people charts!).

Even for a straightforward go like counting playing cards, there are all
sorts of probable faults, and CJ could talk about it greater than I can. I
desire his e-book would go into depth on HOW the gamers failed the take a look at. I’m positive
that misremembering an index is a popular error. Dropping the rely is a
real-globe slip-up no 1 admits to. Then there is chickening out. It goes like
this: There are two tables. The card counter plops down at the 1st a person he
sees, because it’s a new shoe ready to offer. That is a blunder proper there,
mainly because the table gives 65-70% pen, when the dealer two tables down provides
75-80% pen, and the sims presume a match-assortment normal of 75%. Authentic-entire world EV
has previously taken a hit.

Then it turns out that the vendor is semi-sharp, or at the very least
would make toke-hustling remarks when a bunch of small cards arrive out. So now the
counter is worried to leap his wager from $5 to 2 x $150 (you simmed 1:2×30,
appropriate?). So he jumps his wager from $5 to 2x$65 (with the classic rookie badge—red
on major of the green!), makes a futile comment about having to modify it up (you
won the past hand, bozo). Then the supplier would make a snarky remark, at which
stage the player tosses him a nickel. Now you have an extortionist on the
payroll. Absolutely sure, you are not building any issues at all, child.

Thanks to the magic of the World-wide-web, we can listen to the rookie’s
justification for parking exactly where he played, the justification for hoping to cash out $3400 (shocked
that that would trigger any trouble), the cause for using a player’s card (the
“free” buffet!). So, we are to feel that in Each component in which we can audit
the selection-generating, we see blunders, but that in each and every part that we are
not able to audit (the true counting, betting, and hand-participating in at the table),
the execution is flawless? That’s just untenable.

And occasionally we ARE able to audit individuals other regions. I’ve observed counters earning their bets and taking part in their arms. They’re betting Blessed Ladies way too soon. They’re taking part in way too considerably into negatives. They’re as well gradual. (When an apathetic seller is on car-pilot, there’s no motive to hem-and-haw on an index enjoy. That does not make you look like a gambler somewhat, it just wastes time and attracts far more attention to the deviation. Your default should be: swift, silent.) They are around-performing. They are above-tipping. They are dropping the depend soon after a huge multi-way break up and double. They are physically turning their head to see the discard rack. They are ignoring the telephone connect with. They are supplying ID for no cause. They’re receiving age-checked by likely to the a lot more unsafe checkpoint. They are taking part in in entrance of the erroneous manager. They’re not selecting the ideal table. They’re not buying the greatest on line casino. They’re not completely making use of free of charge on the internet resources. They are not driving a vehicle that can go up hills (we did not think to put that a person on the list, but below we are: 2020 was an eye opener! That one’s for you, John Smith!).

If you never believe me, begin auditing. You can tally
success to test skimming, rely palms to test sport pace, and keep an eye on sport
execution to look at capabilities. I’d love fantastic-tuning the 10%/40%/50% breakdown with
someone with extra info, like CJ, but I think we’re on the similar website page. We have
the explanations for underperformance. All that chat about God functioning in
mysterious means? Fake news.

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