Not as Irrational as We Think?

New research helps explain anomalies like the gambler's fallacy and other irrational human behavior patterns. Researchers found that many "irrational" decisions are made because of erroneous beliefs.

Isn't It Funny How Governments Loosen Their Morals When Cash Is Short?

From Dan Okrent's recent Q&A about Prohibition: "No factor played a larger role in the repeal of Prohibition than the government's desperate need for revenue as the country fell into the grip of the Depression." In short: governments who hate vice suddenly hate it much less when cash flow is slow. And we are seeing that again today.

When Is a Poker Face Not a Poker Face?

"[T]he best 'poker face' for bluffing may not be a neutral face, but rather a face that contains emotional correlates of trustworthiness."

Gambling on the Go

Intrade's new app.

The Bloom Is So Off the Sumo Rose

Sumo wrestling controversy continues. NPR reports that 15 wrestlers and 14 stable masters are accused of gambling on baseball games, which is seen as "not in keeping with stringent ethical standards sumo wrestlers are expected to observe."

Should Antoine Walker Be Arrested for Bouncing Checks? (Should You?)

I'm troubled by news reports that Antoine Walker was arrested for writing $1,000,000 in bad checks. The ex N.B.A. star -- Employee Number 8 -- was forced to do a perp walk as he apparently was led out of Harrah's Tahoe in handcuffs. The criminal complaint alleges that from July 27 to January 19, he wrote 10 separate $100,000 checks with insufficient funds to Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood, and Red Rock Resort.

Shopping for Gamblers

How can Swoopo, the online auction site, rake in $2,151 selling a laptop for $35.86? Easy: set an opening price of $0.01 (almost free!), then let each new bidder top the last by only a penny, and extend the auction each time someone places a bid in the final seconds. Oh, and collect $0.60 from each player for each bid they place. The winner of the auction might walk away with a good deal, but the losers will have racked up big fees chasing their sunk costs.

A Lottery for People Who Are Good at Math

As investment schemes, state lotteries are about as sound as a Bernard Madoff venture. But at least one lottery might be worth it -- if you do the math.

Lotto Is a Place Where Nothing Ever Happens

The Powerball lottery jackpot, which now stands at $20 million, is tough to win — and sometimes, nobody wins it. It’s incredibly hard to match all six numbers drawn for the game. To get an idea of just how long the odds are, software engineer Andrew Arrow built a clever little program that randomly generates […]

Bring Your Questions for Poker Renaissance Man Phil Gordon

Phil Gordon has made more than a few appearances on this blog, most of them concerning his skills as a jack-of-all-poker-trades: he’s a champion player, author, teacher, ringleader, analyst, and entrepreneur. He hasn’t always applied his smarts to cards: a former computer programmer, he started out working at Lockheed Missiles and Space Company on artificial […]