Casino News: A new system to identify card counting

A new system to identify card counting

 August 26, 2008, 7:54 am (12 years ago)
In Ireland, a PhD student in mathematics has produced a united video camera and stats analysis package that he explains that it is going to provide land casino operators with a strong bludgeon in opposition to card counting blackjack players, simultaneously lessening the requirement for existing labor concentrated revealing techniques.
Wesley Cooper, of Trinity College's Graphics, Vision and Visualisation research division in Dublin, has produced Clear Deal, an automatic observation system which will be able to recognize a player who is “counting” cards, establishing a player report and recognizing abnormality throughout a game.

Players who count cards get a benefit in Blackjack by following what cards have already been played from a deck. Remembering what cards are left makes it possible for a player to choose how much to bet and gives them a slight but potentially important advantage over the casino, usually between 0.5 and 2 percent. Even though it is not especially against the law in most casinos, supervisions generally hold the right to prohibit players for counting cards.

“Blackjack is defeat-able if you have a good math-brain,” Cooper explained the TimesOnline this week. “Right now, casino observation staffs have to examine the tables and attempt to spot doubtful play utilizing their experience and senses. This system does the similar job mechanically using computer-vision skills and algorithms.”

The Clear Deal project, which was established by the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology, is being examined with an as yet undisclosed worldwide casino operator. “The criticism has been good and I hope that other casinos are going to accommodate the technology once the examination is done,” Cooper explained.

He told the TimesOnline that as part of his study he had operated as a croupier in Las Vegas. “I found out that one of the most essential things in a casino is to establish a report of each serious player, so they will be able to categorize the ‘profitable’ patrons and aim them with praising drinks and food to keep them at the table,” he explained.

Cooper’s system compares each choice a player makes to that of a “perfect” replicated player to find out a gambler’s ability.

“It will be able to find out if someone is capable or just fortunate. A player with technique and a good numerical mind is able to count cards, giving them a statistical edge over the casino. Blackjack is 3 000 years old and people have been counting cards as it has been played,” he explained.

Savings in observation staff can result from the utilization of the system once it has been optimized and entirely built up; an executive at Dublin's FitzWilliam Card Club stated that watching games like Blackjack is labor exhaustive. “We use a massive amount of money guaranteeing that it’s nigh-on unfeasible to cheat by observing betting patterns and laying a close eye on players. Currently, the dealer observes the players and a superintendent watches the dealer.

“A pit boss examines the whole thing and, generally, we have between 2 and 4 cameras on each table,” he explained. “If a system can be found to reorganize the monitoring, it can be extremely popular with casinos but my gut feeling is that it might be not easy to replace human intuition.”

Cooper stays enthusiastic on his project, explaining the newspaper: “I saw 21 [the film] and the mechanical system we have produced would have recognized what was taking place and changed the casino that it was being aimed.” The film indicates the true story of how a group of maths students from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) won more than Euro 500 000 from Las Vegas casinos by counting cards.
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