Poker Bots on the Rise: A Guest Blog

Ian Ayres is an economist and lawyer at Yale and the author of Super Crunchers, which we excerpted here. He has agreed to write occasional guest posts on our blog, which delights us, since he has a lot of compelling interests and insights. Ian is not the only notable guest blogger who will turn up […]

FREAK-TV: Stacking the Deck

Video It is fairly well known by now that Levitt has more than a passing interest in poker, and he’s occasionally shown some promise. (His blackjack skills, meanwhile, are subject to debate.) It is also well-established that, as a parent, he’s less interested in reading a standard bedtime story than in teaching his kids to […]

The Absolute Poker Cheating Scandal Blown Wide Open

[Addendum appended.] A few weeks back I blogged about allegations of cheating at an online poker site called Absolute Poker. While things looked awfully suspicious, there wasn’t quite a smoking gun, and it was unclear exactly how the cheater might have cheated. A combination of some incredible detective work by some poker players and an […]

How Not to Cheat

Let’s say you discover an old lamp and rub it, and out comes a genie offering to grant you a wish. You are greedy and devious, so you wish for the ability, whenever you play online poker, to see all the cards that the other players are holding. The genie grants your wish. What would […]

Phil Gordon’s Little Blue Book on Poker

We’ve blogged quite a bit about Phil Gordon. The other day, I finally picked up his Little Blue Book. I read just about any poker book that comes out, although not with the gusto I used to have. I am glad to say that I am experiencing rapidly diminishing returns from this activity, which perhaps […]

Poker: Skill vs. Chance

Those of you who’ve been reading this blog for a while, and especially those of you who play poker, may remember a research project called Pokernomics, which is meant to determine what makes a person a good (or bad) poker player. Lately, the question has become more than an academic one. As explained in this […]

My daughter Amanda is a quick study in the game of poker

Two days ago I taught my two older daughters how to play seven card stud. That night we played a few hands before they went to bed. Last night we played a few more hands. Tonight I got home from work and one of my daughters, Amanda, was particularly eager to play poker. So eager […]

An Interesting New Prediction Market

Who doesn’t love a good prediction market? The Economist does and so does Wired — and we certainly do too, as evidenced here and here. Here is a new blog about prediction markets and here is the famous Iowa Electronic Market, which will be a very busy place as the upcoming elections unfold. And who […]

Is Levitt a Celebrity? It Depends on Your Definition

A few months ago, after someone claimed I was a celebrity, I offered to test that hypothesis by giving $100 to anyone who identified me spontaneously over the next 30 days. (In the deal I excluded the U of C campus area, because people know me there just because I am a professor.) It was […]

Tricky incentives in tournament poker

Big poker tournaments are a zero-sum game. The competitors pay to enter and those entry fees are returned as prize money. It is common practice for a player to be sponsored by someone else, i.e. a third party pays a player’s entry fee in return for a share of the profits earned. This is true […]