Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Slot Machine Myths

A pretty nice article from a Tunica, Mississippi television station helps burst the bubble regarding some myths regarding slot machines. The story is linked here. The essence of the bubble bursting is the presence of a random number generator inside each slot machine. It determines wins and losses.

From the article the myths are (with my commentary):

1. "Hot" and "cold" machines. The random number generator, being an electric component, can become warm when inside and operating in a machine, but other than that on a per-pull basis, the result is the result. What happened last pull doesn't have an impact on the result of the next pull. Sad but true. That being said, just because a jackpot was won the last pull, doesn't mean you won't get a jackpot on the next pull. Highly unlikely given the typical payout distribution of the machine, but it is theoretically possible.

2. Using a player's club card helps you win. Nope. Those cards help track your play, which if plentiful can earn the player benefits and perks, but the slot machine doesn't modify its payouts depending on who is playing.

3. Casino management controls who wins. If that were true, you'd be seeing LOTS of lawsuits. No, the machines operate independently from casino management's ability to control who wins and when. Machines typically go through vigorous regulatory testing to ensure proper operation before they are approved for use.

4. Machines alter payouts depending on how much money is bet. Again, the result is determined on a per-pull basis, not on a per-bet basis. Is it possible that if you had wagered on more lines than just the minimum you may have won on a particular pull? Sure. But remember you would be wagering a lot more money per slot machine pull, which may mean your bankroll would potentially go away a lot faster (unless you win of course).

5. You can determine the odds of the machine based on physical examination of the reels. Not even close to being accurate. Hate to break this to you but with newer games, the reels have no impact on whether you win. Huh? Yep. I posted this back in 2008 explaining this, which you can read here. What happens in modern slot machines is that when you push the button (or still pull a handle), the machine determines if you win and if so, how much, THEN the reels will spin and stop on various symbols in order to reflect that resulting win (or loss). A bit disappointing, isn't it?

Add to Technorati Favorites

Monday, September 27, 2010

Internet Gambling Bill Has Dim Prospects is reporting that the internet gambling and taxation legislation proposed by Rep. Jim McDermott is not likely to move forward before the November election. Historically, not much legislation gets done in "lame duck" sessions, so the prospects for federal legislation to allow internet gambling are pretty dim.

In addition, I'm not aware that the Senate has any sponsors for the bill on their side. Both houses of Congress need to pass the legislation before heading to the White House for signature. With the election and not enough traction, I think we're not going to see a legalized and regulated internet gambling structure from the federal level anytime soon. If it happens, it will have to be at the state level or from the Indian tribes.

As is expected, Republicans will take over control of the House of Representatives. Historically, Republicans aren't in favor of internet gambling. That should put the prospect of federally regulated internet gambling on the back burner for several more years, or until the budget situation is so bad, that the money will just be too attractive to resist.

Add to Technorati Favorites

Sunday, September 12, 2010

It's NFL Kickoff Weekend, But Someone Knows the Results Now!

Yes, indeed. Although the Week 1 games are still in progress, WhatIfSports thinks they know who will make the playoffs and even win the Super Bowl. Here's the teams WhatIfSports think will go to the playoffs, win the conference championships and win the Super Bowl:

AFC East - New York Jets
AFC North - Baltimore Ravens
AFC West - San Diego Chargers
AFC South - Houston Texans
Wild Card - Tennessee Titans
Wild Card - Indianapolis Colts

NFC East - Dallas Cowboys
NFC North - Green Bay Packers
NFC West - San Francisco 49ers
NFC South - New Orleans Saints
Wild Card - Minnesota Vikings
Wild Card - Carolina Panthers

AFC Champion - San Diego Chargers
NFC Champion - Green Bay Packers

Super Bowl - Green Bay Packers

They predict the New England Patriots don't even make the playoffs. We'll see. The company is touting its simulation technology, but I'm not convinced that it is that useful. I've done posts in the past which predicted fantasy rankings, based on the premise that stating what happened last year would happen this year. Individual performances may not vary significantly, but teams' performances can vary significantly from year to year. The recent Super Bowl loser slump is a great example.

Do you think WhatIfSports is correct? Do you think the top 3 teams in the AFC East will all finish with 8-8 records? I have doubts as to the usefulness of this approach with regard to team performance.

Add to Technorati Favorites