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Probability and poker

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Most players have an illusion of control in which a person believes s/he has the ability to understand and determine the outcome of uncertain events. In a research conducted by Andrada-Mihaela Istrate (2011), the author attempted to understand the game of poker through the experiences of poker players. Specifically, the author interviewed players from Bucharest who use this game as a means of subsistence. In his research, Istrate (2011) was able to highlight how poker players approach this game. The author notes that psychological poker players are seen as those who have the ability to read their opponents with a high level of accuracy based on tiny or non-existent clues (Istrate 55).

Experienced players are those that have the ability to make accurate predictions of their opponents’ moves, thereby increasing their chances of winning. In approaching the game of poker, as Istrate discovered, most players look at their opponents to identify certain flaws or features that will help them to win the game. These flaws will tell them the weaknesses of their opponents, and they therefore capitalize on these weaknesses to win games.

For this reason, players look at the position the opponents occupy on the table, their timings and pace, and the way they behave and move their cards. Poker players thus attempt to disguise their feelings and fears from their opponents through facial expressions and body language (Istrate 57). This can be seen as the skills used by these players to win games. In a game of poker, the skills are purely based on the ability of the player to read and understand the actions of others.

On the other hand, the player has to hide his or her feelings or expressions that might reveal his or her actions to the opponents. Another important discovery made by Istrate (2011) in his research is the use of experience. These players also rely on experience, which comes as a result of playing many games. Experience in this case is measured by the number of hands one plays. If a person plays more hands, then s/he is more experienced. The more experiences and encounters a player has in the game of poker, the more knowledge the player accumulates.

This gives him/her a higher chance of winning; thereby increasing his/her chances of playing the game even more. For most poker players, experience is about having authority (Istrate 60). If a player has had many encounters, then s/he has greater influence on the game, and his/her opinions are likely to be respected.

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preview essay on Probability and poker
  • Pages: 12 (3000 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: English
  • Level: Undergraduate
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