1. ## Calypso: Deck Penetration

Hello,

I keep asking this same question on many forums and I still cannot find anyone who can convince me that they know what they are talking about......

It is the question of WHY should a deeper penetration on a shoe be such a big advantage to a card counter......?

The usual answers are that if the penetration is high then this increases the chances of a big positive count occuring and that when it does occur that there will be longer time to take advantage of it.

Also that the more cards that a counter sees, then the more accurate the count.

The first reason does not seem very mathematical to me and as for the second, why would a count be more accurate?

I have recently recorded 10,000 hands from an online live dealer game and the results are amazing!

When I compare like for like e.g. Say if I was to analyse all the hands where my advantage was between 0.1% and 0.5% then my P/L is consistently higher when the hand occurs >45% into the shoe compared to the hands <45% into the shoe.

It does not matter what angle I come from, the later hands always score better than the earlier hands. (Comparing like for like, even when I look at say all the hands where I am <-1% etc).

Surely a 1% advantage is a 1% advantage....Surely it does not matter whether there are 52 cards left in the shoe or 1,000 cards left in the shoe......?

I like to think that I understand the concept that we have a bigger advantage playing with a lesser number of decks because of the fact that when we are dealt an Ace, then that has a bigger effect for a small original shoe size than a large original shoe size, but I cannot see that the concept applies here.

Since I am playing live dealer online, my PC is able to count every card and therefore my playing strategy is absolute optimum in that my PC does not use any EOR estimation calculations but it works out the best play by analysing all the permutations of all the possible continuations.

Is it conceivable that the PC's ability to play the hand better in the latter part of the shoe a factor....?

I know you are probably going to say that a sample of 10,000 hands is much too small to jump to any conclusions, but if you saw how clear cut my results were, I just cannot see how it could just be a coincidence.

So my ultimate question is....

Should I expect better results with a 1% advantage after 60% of a shoe compared to a 1% advantage after 20% of a shoe....?

Thank You.

Calypso

2. ## Don Schlesinger: Re: Deck Penetration

> Hello,

> I keep asking this same question on many forums and I
> still cannot find anyone who can convince me that they
> know what they are talking about......

That's hard to believe. Have you discussed this on Norm's forum, or BJ21? There are DOZENS of people there who can answer you intelligently.

> It is the question of WHY should a deeper penetration
> on a shoe be such a big advantage to a card
> counter......?

Really rather simple answer. More frequent opportunities for higher true counts.

> The usual answers are that if the penetration is high
> then this increases the chances of a big positive
> count occurring and that when it does occur that there
> will be longer time to take advantage of it.

That is correct.

> Also that the more cards that a counter sees, then the
> more accurate the count.

Not as relevant.

> The first reason does not seem very mathematical to me
> and as for the second, why would a count be more
> accurate?

Well, with all due respect, it doesn't have to be mathematical to you to be correct. It could be correct and you simply don't understand the math.

Suppose I deal one single hand and then shuffle. Do you have any chance whatsoever for, say, a +5 true count, in a shoe game? Answer: of course not. Well, suppose I deal one deck. NOW do I have a chance? Yes, you do, but a very small one, because not enough cards have been dealt to produce this kind of anomaly, when you are dividing your running count by, say, 5.5 decks remaining. You would need a RC of over 25 to get your true count of +5, and there are only 52 cards in that first deck. In short, ain't gonna happen!

But, now, keep dealing deeper and deeper and the dispersion of the true count around its mean of zero grows greater. As more and more cards are dealt, the chance to get a high true count increases dramatically. You need only look at charts such as those found in chapter 10 of BJA3 to see clearly how, the deeper the penetration, the more frequent the extreme counts appear. It is an easily demonstrable mathematical fact.

> I have recently recorded 10,000 hands from an online
> live dealer game and the results are amazing!

The results are utterly and completely meaningless for drawing any kinds of statistical conclusions whatsoever.

> When I compare like for like e.g. Say if I was to
> analyse all the hands where my advantage was between
> 0.1% and 0.5% then my P/L is consistently higher when
> the hand occurs >45% into the shoe compared to the
> hands It does not matter what angle I come from, the
> later hands always score better than the earlier
> hands. (Comparing like for like, even when I look at
> say all the hands where I am Surely a 1% advantage
> is a 1% advantage....Surely it does not matter whether
> there are 52 cards left in the shoe or 1,000 cards
> left in the shoe......?

> I like to think that I understand the concept that we
> have a bigger advantage playing with a lesser number
> of decks because of the fact that when we are dealt an
> Ace, then that has a bigger effect for a small
> original shoe size than a large original shoe size,
> but I cannot see that the concept applies here.

It isn't what you're asking. You're asking about greater advantage, once the number of decks is specified, due to increased penetration, not to playing with fewer shuffled decks at the onset.

> Since I am playing live dealer online, my PC is able
> to count every card and therefore my playing strategy
> is absolute optimum in that my PC does not use any EOR
> estimation calculations but it works out the best play
> by analysing all the permutations of all the possible
> continuations.

Fine.

> Is it conceivable that the PC's ability to play the
> hand better in the latter part of the shoe a
> factor....?

Yes, of course. But, it's a separate edge apart from the betting edge. BOTH contribute to extra advantage with deeper pen.

> I know you are probably going to say that a sample of
> conclusions,

It is utterly meaningless.

> but if you saw how clear cut my results
> were, I just cannot see how it could just be a
> coincidence.

It's a coincidence! :-) Run a computer sim with 10 BILLION hands, and you've got some reliable information! :-)

> So my ultimate question is....

> Should I expect better results with a 1% advantage
> after 60% of a shoe compared to a 1% advantage after
> 20% of a shoe....?

No. But, you probably are making a mistake as to what constitutes a 1% advantage! If you are using the same true counts -- say +3 -- then the answer is yes. The same true count conveys greater advantage deeper in the deck than earlier in the deck. This is the floating advantage, and I write extensively on the subject in BJA3.

> Thank You.

You're welcome!

Don

3. ## Calypso: Re: Deck Penetration

> That's hard to believe. Have you discussed this on
> Norm's forum, or BJ21? There are DOZENS of people
> there who can answer you intelligently.

> Really rather simple answer. More frequent
> opportunities for higher true counts.

> That is correct.

> Not as relevant.

> Well, with all due respect, it doesn't have to be
> mathematical to you to be correct. It could be correct
> and you simply don't understand the math.

> Suppose I deal one single hand and then shuffle. Do
> you have any chance whatsoever for, say, a +5 true
> count, in a shoe game? Answer: of course not. Well,
> suppose I deal one deck. NOW do I have a chance? Yes,
> you do, but a very small one, because not enough cards
> have been dealt to produce this kind of anomaly, when
> you are dividing your running count by, say, 5.5 decks
> remaining. You would need a RC of over 25 to get your
> true count of +5, and there are only 52 cards in that
> first deck. In short, ain't gonna happen!

> But, now, keep dealing deeper and deeper and the
> dispersion of the true count around its mean of zero
> grows greater. As more and more cards are dealt, the
> chance to get a high true count increases
> dramatically. You need only look at charts such as
> those found in chapter 10 of BJA3 to see clearly how,
> the deeper the penetration, the more frequent the
> extreme counts appear. It is an easily demonstrable
> mathematical fact.

> The results are utterly and completely meaningless for
> drawing any kinds of statistical conclusions
> whatsoever.

> You have a lot to learn about the math of the game.

> greater advantage, once the number of decks is
> specified, due to increased penetration, not to
> playing with fewer shuffled decks at the onset.

> Fine.

> Yes, of course. But, it's a separate edge apart from
> the betting edge. BOTH contribute to extra advantage
> with deeper pen.

> It is utterly meaningless.

> It's a coincidence! :-) Run a computer sim with 10
> BILLION hands, and you've got some reliable
> information! :-)

> No. But, you probably are making a mistake as to what
> constitutes a 1% advantage! If you are using the same
> true counts -- say +3 -- then the answer is yes. The
> same true count conveys greater advantage deeper in
> the deck than earlier in the deck. This is the
> floating advantage, and I write extensively on the
> subject in BJA3.

> You're welcome!

> Don

Hi Don,

Thanks ever so much for responding so quickly and eloquently......

One thing that has surfaced, for me, is the concept of "The Floating Advantage" (Sorry to copy your pun from page 69 of BJA3).

I have to admit that I have, in the past, skated over chapter 6 in my eagerness to get to the exciting tables at the end of the book.

Although I am having trouble understanding WHY the Floating Advantage exists, I am convinced that it certainly DOES exist......Thank You.

Calypso

4. ## Don Schlesinger: Re: Deck Penetration

> Hi Don,

> Thanks ever so much for responding so quickly and
> eloquently......

My pleasure.

> One thing that has surfaced, for me, is the concept of
> "The Floating Advantage" (Sorry to copy your
> pun from page 69 of BJA3).

Ha! I had forgotten that. :-)

> I have to admit that I have, in the past, skated over
> chapter 6 in my eagerness to get to the exciting
> tables at the end of the book.

You're not the only one! It is important, though.

> Although I am having trouble understanding WHY the

You're far from alone, and you're in awfully good company, as Peter Griffin himself was a skeptic for a while, as well, as you can read in the beginning of the chapter.

> I am convinced that it certainly DOES exist......Thank >You.

Yes, it does, although I wish it had proven to be somewhat more important, after all the work and research we did to demonstrate the effect. Still it was an important breakthrough, and John Gwynn did a spectacular job with the computer simulations.

Don

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