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Ask the Mad Professor
Part 4

(read part I here or Part 2 here or Part 3 here)

A hip young guy goes out and buys one of the fastest cars available.  It’s a brand new Ferrari 550 Maranello, and he pay’s $274,000 for it.  He takes it out for a spin and stops for a red light.  An old man on a moped, looking about 100 years old, pulls up next to him.  

The old man looks over at the sleek, shiny car and asks, "What kind of car ya' got there sonny?"   The young man replies, "It’s a Ferrari that costs over a quarter of a million dollars!"  "That's a lot of money," says the old man." Why does it cost so much?"  "Because this car can do up to 320 miles an hour!" states the young dude proudly.
The moped driver asks, "Mind if I take a look inside?"  "No problem," replies the owner.  So the old man pokes his head in the window and looks around.  Then, sitting back on his moped, the old man says, "That's a pretty nice car, all right... but I'll stick with my moped!"

Just then the light changes, so the guy decides to show the old man just what his car can do. He floors it, and within 30 seconds, the speedometer reads 160 mph!  Suddenly, he notices a dot in his rear view mirror. It seems to be getting closer! He slows down to see what it could be, and suddenly, WHOOOOOOSSSSSHHH!  Something whips by him, going much, much faster!

"What on earth could be going faster than my Ferrari?" he asks himself.  He floors the accelerator and takes the Ferrari up to 250 mph.   Then, up ahead of him, he sees that it's the old man on the moped! Amazed that  the moped could pass his Ferrari, he gives the Italian Stallion more gas and passes the moped at 275 mph.  WHOOOOOOOSHHHHH!

He's feeling pretty good until he looks in his mirror and sees the old man gaining on him AGAIN!  Astounded by the speed of this old guy, he floors the gas pedal and takes the Ferrari all the way up to 320 mph.  Not ten seconds later he sees the moped bearing down on him again! The Ferrari is flat out, and there's nothing he can do!

Suddenly, the moped plows into the back of his Ferrari, demolishing the rear end.  The young man stops and jumps out, and unbelievably, the old man is STILL ALIVE!!!!!

He runs up to the mangled old man and says, "Oh My Gosh! Is there anything I can do for you?"  The old man whispers with his dying breath... "Unhook....my...suspenders... from... your... side-view mirror."

There has been a lot of questions pouring into my e-slot lately.  Here’s a few:


You stated that dice "pop" is caused by using too much force.  I dropped a die flat from 4" off a table & the die "popped" & "rolled" in different directions each time, so how can a die stay on the starting axis, landing on a flat plane from a 2' height & expect it to bounce straight on the same axis into a 45 deg. pyramidal wall?



You actually answered your own question.   By simply dropping the dice, they have to dissipate their energy.  Since the table is flat and hard, they have to GO somewhere else.  In this case they “pop” or randomly roll sideways.  In Precision-Shooting we give the dice something better to do on their way to stopping.  Forward-motion propels them down the table.   Rolling-motion, once they initially hit the table acts to dissipate their forward energy.  We are then looking for them to rotate the same number of rotations in relation to each other.  When you can get that to occur on a regular basis, then you have captured the essence of what we are trying to do.



Am I correct in assuming that because of your flexible schedule, you attempt and succeed at solo-shooting most of the time?  Any words on that topic would be appreciated!



I would guess that more than 40% of my articles on this site, talk about seeking empty or sparsely-populated craps tables.  It is the chief factor in determining my win-rate for any given day.  At a crowded table, even if the dice are cold, I’ll only get my hands on the dice every 45-minutes, or so.  On an empty table, I can shoot solo, and get in about 10 rolls per minute.  So, a two, three, or four minute hand can hold up to 40 rolls.  My current average is about 28 rolls per hand. 



I heard that the house-edge for craps and blackjack are pretty low at about 1.5%, but I also read that the house-hold on these games range are 15% to 30%, what gives?



As your bankroll recycles itself over and over in the betting process, you would be surprised at the total amount of your wagers over a one-hour period.  A $10 Pass Line bettor who takes full 3x, 4x, 5x Odds and two Come bets with full Odds, will expose a total of about $3,000 over a sixty minute period.  Your expected loss rate would be approximately $25 per hour.   Like the car-advertisements say, YOUR mileage may vary.  But at $25 per hour, that’s a fairly expensive form of entertainment.  Bankroll erosion occurs through both the House Edge, and because of normal fluctuations in the game.  If your starting bankroll is $300, then in one hour, your stake has made about ten full-rotations through the casino-edge grinder.  In that one hour, your bankroll lost about 8.5%.   That’s a lot higher than a 0.6% edge would indicate.  It is because you are cycling your bankroll through the house-edge over and over and over again.



I am thinking of investing in voice-recognition software.  When I first read what you said about it, I thought you were joking.  I asked around, and apparently it is for real.   So what is the cost of it, and how does it work?  Someone also said that they use it at casinos.  What could it be used for?



Voice-Recognition software is relatively cheap.  There are two or three pieces that can be bought for around $100 each.   There are few more expensive versions in the $300 to $600 range.  Some systems can be “taught”, based on the number of changes or amendments that you make when it first “drafts” what you say.  It “learns” from those changes, and corrects its “understanding” about what you really “meant” instead of what it thought you initially said.

A lot of casinos have installed a proprietary voice-recognition program that they use to surveil alleged blackjack card-counters.  It is used so that even security personnel who do not count cards, can figure out whether a player is counting, and what counting-method or system they are using. 

Most surveillance rooms use “BJ Survey Voice”, a computer program in which a person must type or say each card-value as it comes out.  They enter the bet amount at the beginning of each hand. It can be used live in “real-time” or with a tape review. Many times the software cannot differentiate between "eight" and "ace" rendering the software inaccurate.  The user has to speak very clearly. 

Many casinos now have a special telephone-line that the Pit Boss uses to dial directly into the computer software.  He picks up the phone, and “tells” the computer what each card is, and where the subject-player is sitting relative to the deal.  At the end of each hand, the computer “tells” the Pit Boss what the count is, and what the likely bet would be, using various Hi-Opt II, Ace side-count, or other counting methods.

Most of my articles are initially assembled using VR software.

Thanks again for all the great questions.  I hope the answers were helpful.

Good Luck & Good Skill at the Tables…and in Life.

The Mad Professor

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