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DJofSD
11-09-2012, 01:41 PM
The complete title is "The Success Equation: Untangling Skill and Luck in Business, Sports, and Investing."

http://hbr.org/product/the-success-equation-untangling-skill-and-luck-in-/an/10957E-KND-ENG

Could be good. If I had nothing else to read, I'd read this. Perhaps it might be of interest to others on this site.

thaskalos
11-09-2012, 01:56 PM
I read the author's other book, MORE THAN YOU KNOW...and I thought it was excellent.

Robert Goren
11-09-2012, 03:38 PM
You can save about $10 by getting it at Amazon in both hardcover and kindle editions. It is going on christmas lists.

Dave Schwartz
11-09-2012, 06:15 PM
Ordered. Thank you.

Dave

DJofSD
11-09-2012, 06:31 PM
Ordered. Thank you.

Dave
Please post back any first impressions you would care to share.

TIA

Dave Schwartz
11-10-2012, 01:59 AM
Just getting started but here is an interesting quote, very applicable to racing:

“There are a lot of areas where people who have experience think they're experts, but the difference is that experts have predictive models, and people who have experience have models that aren't necessarily predictive.”

Distinguishing between experience and expertise is critical because we all want to understand the future and are inclined to turn to seasoned professionals with good credentials to tell us what is going to happen.



Mauboussin, Michael J. (2012-10-16). The Success Equation: Untangling Skill and Luck in Business, Sports, and Investing (Kindle Locations 434-435). Perseus Books Group. Kindle Edition.

Dave Schwartz
11-10-2012, 02:19 AM
I have read this book far enough to know that, while the subject matter is somewhat interesting, it contains nothing that will help me to understand more than I did before.

If you like this sort of thing and have lots of time/money to spend on books, go for it. Otherwise, I'd give it 1 star out of 5 for content.

Dave

dkithore
01-07-2013, 10:40 PM
I found this book (Success Equation by Mauboussin) engaging in some respects and a easy read. Based on the first quick scan, I came away with few tangible ideas as they apply to our sport. Skill vs. luck is the intriguing idea and like some feed back from astute handicappers. Your opinion as to how much is skill and percent you attribute to luck as they relate to success (+ROI).

In my opinion, skill and luck are 50-50. Of course, contender selection being the domain of skill and outcome, the luck.

baconswitchfarm
01-08-2013, 02:15 AM
Long term, it is skill-99% and luck 1%.

Robert Fischer
01-08-2013, 10:27 AM
good find on the book.

I've got a couple hundred business/poker/horseracing ebooks sitting in a folder that I haven't read yet.

From reading the blurb, it looks more like a book that will entertain and stimulate.

I may wait on this one. I do have 57 Harvard Business Review editions in .pdf in that collection (some of which can be found on torrents).

Robert Fischer
01-08-2013, 10:28 AM
overall it's mostly talent and skill.

just don't get hit by a bus or something.

DeltaLover
01-08-2013, 10:54 AM
Long term, it is skill-99% and luck 1%.

This is what I call a BOLD STATEMENT

What makes you to believe so?

raybo
01-08-2013, 01:26 PM
Long term, it is skill-99% and luck 1%.

If one is betting single horses to win, and is successful, then luck carries a lower percentage. If one bets multiple horses to win, and is successful, then luck is still lower, regarding all his selections, but regarding "which" of those horses actually wins, luck is probably a higher percentage. Hope that makes sense, upon re-reading it, I'm not so sure. :lol:

Basically, luck, in racing can be with you, or against you. I believe it tends to even out over time.

DJofSD
01-08-2013, 01:27 PM
Define: skill, luck.

Greyfox
01-08-2013, 01:35 PM
Define: skill, luck.

Quote attributed to Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, and Tom Watson depending on the source:

"The more I practice, the luckier I get."

raybo
01-08-2013, 01:36 PM
Define: skill, luck.

How about this: Skill is the ability to enable good luck to happen, while overcoming the happenings of bad luck, long term. I don't think "luck" needs to be defined. Maybe you do?

turninforhome10
01-08-2013, 01:40 PM
Quote attributed to Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, and Tom Watson depending on the source:

"The more I practice, the luckier I get."
"I'd rather be lucky than good."
Lefty Gomez
"4-time 20-game winner with NY Yankees; holds World Series record for most wins (6) without a defeat; pitched on 5 world championship clubs in 1930s

baconswitchfarm
01-08-2013, 02:17 PM
This is what I call a BOLD STATEMENT

What makes you to believe so?
If you do this one weekend a month you can use luck. When you do this sixty hours a week for years, the things that happen are just happenings. I have lost because of geese and had races declared no contest because rabbits caused a wreck at the top of the stretch. They are just things that happen in a career. Some good, some bad. You turn the page and prepare for the next race. If Luck was a major factor, you would not have to work so hard.

DJofSD
01-08-2013, 02:21 PM
Quote attributed to Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, and Tom Watson depending on the source:

"The more I practice, the luckier I get."
Yes, and, another golfing notable said a hole in one was luck but leaving the ball two feet from the pin was skill -- or words to that effect.

But, I digress. What appears to be luck for some one could actually be skill. How do you show it was not luck?

raybo
01-08-2013, 02:26 PM
Yes, and, another golfing notable said a hole in one was luck but leaving the ball two feet from the pin was skill -- or words to that effect.

Thoroughly agree, the ability to put the ball close to the hole, consistently, enables the hole in one to happen. The fact that the hole in one happens, is pretty much luck.

But, I digress. What appears to be luck for some one could actually be skill. How do you show it was not luck?

You show it isn't a result of luck, with your bottom line, over time.

Cholly
01-08-2013, 04:33 PM
Define: skill, luck.
Quote attributed to Darrell Royal, legendary UT football coach:

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.

dkithore
01-08-2013, 09:32 PM
Define: skill, luck.

Reading the book, Tennis player wins mostly with skill whereas, Lotto or roulette is mostly luck dependent. Read the book for more examples and evidence procedure.

dkithore
01-10-2013, 12:38 AM
Within the context of favorites win at 35-37% of races, it indicates to me (IMO) that this game is significantly more luck than skill. This is not to encourage sloppy handicapping for inspiring handicappers rather to hold our sporting outcome with greater equanimity (win or lose). Extreme example of luck was the results of 2011 Breeder's Cup.

baconswitchfarm
01-10-2013, 01:56 AM
Within the context of favorites win at 35-37% of races, it indicates to me (IMO) that this game is significantly more luck than skill. This is not to encourage sloppy handicapping for inspiring handicappers rather to hold our sporting outcome with greater equanimity (win or lose). Extreme example of luck was the results of 2011 Breeder's Cup.

So if the game is significantly more luck than skill, if you lose every year do you just have terrible luck ? If you win every year , do you just have a streak of never ending good luck ?

dkithore
01-10-2013, 07:22 AM
So if the game is significantly more luck than skill, if you lose every year do you just have terrible luck ? If you win every year , do you just have a streak of never ending good luck ?

You raise some interesting questions. I encourage you to read the book and check for yourself what author's contentions are for other sports, like tennis, basketball, baseball etc. One assertion repeated on this blog from respected bloggers is: one needs a large sample to discern any patterns, systems, models etc. That assertion leads me to believe that our sport is significantly more luck (that is why we need larger sample size). More skilled games do need smaller samples according to author of the book.
For me, this book has many small nuggets that relate to what traps to avoid as I am still a student of this great sport.

Sorry I can not respond to your questions as I have not kept records of my past thirty some years of racing history as I consider myself a recreational handicapper. Enjoyable and enlightening? yes. Profitable? no.

dkithore
01-10-2013, 07:33 AM
Define: skill, luck.

"On the skill side of continuum, feedback is clear and accurate, because there is close relationship between cause and effect. Feedback on the luck side of continuum is often misleading because cause and effect are poorly correlated in short run....." There is more to that then the quote I copied. Hope it throws some light on the meaning you seek.

thaskalos
01-10-2013, 03:01 PM
The game has changed in a way that has narrowed the line between luck and skill...IMO.

It used to be practically impossible for an everyday bettor to show a profit at the end of the year based on luck alone...but that is no longer the case. In this, the age of the super-exotics...anything is possible. A player can hit a monster Pick-6 payoff with a fluky $6 ticket...and declare himself a winner for a lifetime.

But I would have to say that, long term, a player's results will be determined 90% by skill level and 10% by luck.

Luck pays short, unexpected visits...and leaves just as suddenly. Skill is much more dependable...:)

DJofSD
01-10-2013, 03:25 PM
The game has changed in a way that has narrowed the line between luck and skill...IMO.

It used to be practically impossible for an everyday bettor to show a profit at the end of the year based on luck alone...but that is no longer the case. In this, the age of the super-exotics...anything is possible. A player can hit a monster Pick-6 payoff with a fluky $6 ticket...and declare himself a winner for a lifetime.

But I would have to say that, long term, a player's results will be determined 90% by skill level and 10% by luck.

Luck pays short, unexpected visits...and leaves just as suddenly. Skill is much more dependable...:)
Interesting take on things.

I've always thought that wagering skills were separate from what proceeded whether that be selection oriented or value oriented.

Can I interpret the above scenario of a fluky $6 exotic to mean the luck of throwing together the right ticket outweighs the skill used to handicap the race?

In other words, as you've already stated, the line that used to separate the handicapping from the wagering is now blurred or even possibly eliminated? And, by extension, back in the bad old days when there was only straight wagering, punters were more skillful than lucky, no?

thaskalos
01-10-2013, 03:45 PM
Interesting take on things.

I've always thought that wagering skills were separate from what proceeded whether that be selection oriented or value oriented.

Can I interpret the above scenario of a fluky $6 exotic to mean the luck of throwing together the right ticket outweighs the skill used to handicap the race?

In other words, as you've already stated, the line that used to separate the handicapping from the wagering is now blurred or even possibly eliminated? And, by extension, back in the bad old days when there was only straight wagering, punters were more skillful than lucky, no?

You've misunderstood me.

I said the line between luck and skill has gotten THINNER...where, once, it was very broad.

And NO...throwing a few dollars on the "right ticket" cannot outway the skill of handicappping the race...mainly because we can never know beforehand which ticket will be the "right ticket".

All I am trying to say is that there are some players walking around with a lot of money in their pockets today...who might not be the "winning players" that they imagine themselves to be. Super-exotics work that way sometimes.

But, as I said...this kind of luck smiles to very few...and even for them, the scenario often has a bad ending.

You can't expect to be lucky for a lifetime...

DJofSD
01-10-2013, 04:01 PM
OK, thanks for clarifying.

I guess if some one was walking around thinking their luck would never end that's just another example of the optimist in most horse players.

dkithore
01-10-2013, 09:15 PM
.

But I would have to say that, long term, a player's results will be determined 90% by skill level and 10% by luck.

Luck pays short, unexpected visits...and leaves just as suddenly. Skill is much more dependable...:)

Thask, indulge me. What is a long term? Or does it depend on an individual's skill level?

I am also intrigued by the fact that if the sport is so skillful then why public gets their favorites right 35% right. I want to know your view.

raybo
01-10-2013, 10:34 PM
Let me jump in here. If you are talking about skill in selecting horses, and also skill in wagering on those horses, enough so that the combination of the two results in net profit, then "long term", as far as I am concerned, means from the time one becomes skilled until he is no longer skilled, either due to mental incapacity of some kind, non-use of the skills and their resulting degradation and failure to continue to evolve, or death. Once you are skilled, that skill is always there, unless your mental, psychological, and emotional faculties are lost, for whatever reason, or you let the game pass you by.

coachv30
01-10-2013, 11:09 PM
I'm enjoying this topic very much and would like to pose a (Hypothetical) question:

John Doe goes to the races every day for a year and plays nothing but rolling pick threes. Every day he plays 8 pick threes. He always misses the first 7 by one horse, putting him (let's say) $60 in the hole. He always hits the last one and it always pays $60. Therefore, every day for one year he breaks even.

Question one: Would you say he is a skilled handicapper to not only nail 2 out of 3 horses in seven consecutive pick threes and always hit the last one to break even?

Question two: Would you call it luck that he saves his butt on the last one to get his wagers back?

Question three: Would you call it neither because he has no net profit to show for himself.

raybo
01-10-2013, 11:12 PM
My above post assumes we're not talking about a "one hit wonder", 1 year or even 2 or 3 years, does not necessarily mean you are skilled, only temporarily successful.

raybo
01-10-2013, 11:14 PM
I'm enjoying this topic very much and would like to pose a (Hypothetical) question:

John Doe goes to the races every day for a year and plays nothing but rolling pick threes. Every day he plays 8 pick threes. He always misses the first 7 by one horse, putting him (let's say) $60 in the hole. He always hits the last one and it always pays $60. Therefore, every day for one year he breaks even.

Question one: Would you say he is a skilled handicapper to not only nail 2 out of 3 horses in seven consecutive pick threes and always hit the last one to break even?

Question two: Would you call it luck that he saves his butt on the last one to get his wagers back?

Question three: Would you call it neither because he has no net profit to show for himself.

I would say he is a skilled handicapper, but not necessarily a skilled wagerer. If he switches from the Picks to win only play, he obviously has the skills to pick enough winners to be successful, but he is playing the wrong game.

coachv30
01-10-2013, 11:22 PM
I agree....which poses another question:

Is it possible to be a skilled wagerer without being a skilled handicapper? If so, give me an example.

raybo
01-10-2013, 11:29 PM
I agree....which poses another question:

Is it possible to be a skilled wagerer without being a skilled handicapper? If so, give me an example.

One example, assume a player creates his own line, and he places his wagers, consistently on those horses that are offering value, as determined by his line versus the odds offered, but, his line is faulty due to poor handicapping skills. He is skilled in wagering but not in handicapping.

dkithore
01-10-2013, 11:32 PM
Let me jump in here. If you are talking about skill in selecting horses, and also skill in wagering on those horses, enough so that the combination of the two results in net profit, then "long term", as far as I am concerned, means from the time one becomes skilled until he is no longer skilled, either due to mental incapacity of some kind, non-use of the skills and their resulting degradation and failure to continue to evolve, or death. Once you are skilled, that skill is always there, unless your mental, psychological, and emotional faculties are lost, for whatever reason, or you let the game pass you by.

Raybo, thanks for a excellent and meaningful narrative.

thaskalos
01-10-2013, 11:45 PM
Thask, indulge me. What is a long term? Or does it depend on an individual's skill level?

I am also intrigued by the fact that if the sport is so skillful then why public gets their favorites right 35% right. I want to know your view.

To my knowledge, there is no set definition for the terms "long run"...or 'long term". The meaning changes according to the individual's own opinion.

My opinion is that, in a chaotic activity like horse race betting...long term should mean the entirety of a horseplayer's betting career. I mean...how can you call yourself a "long-term winner" in the game...if you eventually end up broke, and are forced to abandon your betting career prematurely. :)

In spite of what most gamblers might think, I happen to think that it's very possible for a long-time winner to eventually lose his edge on the competition...and end up broke -- even after many years of successful play. I know a couple of guys who fit this description to a "T".

Your question about the winning percentage of the race favorites confuses me; I don't know how this proves that the element of luck is running rampant in this game, as far as the "long-term" is concerned.

Don't forget...the race favorite is established by the wagers of uninformed AND informed bettors...so the luck factor alone should not be given credit for the favorites' high winning percentage.

It's anybody's guess what the winning percentage of these favorites would be if the "informed" money were somehow kept out of the wagering pools...but I would wager heavily that it wouldn't be anywhere near 35%.

raybo
01-11-2013, 12:11 AM
To my knowledge, there is no set definition for the terms "long run"...or 'long term". The meaning changes according to the individual's own opinion.

My opinion is that, in a chaotic activity like horse race betting...long term should mean the entirety of a horseplayer's betting career. I mean...how can you call yourself a "long-term winner" in the game...if you eventually end up broke, and are forced to abandon your betting career prematurely. :)

In spite of what most gamblers might think, I happen to think that it's very possible for a long-time winner to eventually lose his edge on the competition...and end up broke -- even after many years of successful play. I know a couple of guys who fit this description to a "T".

Your question about the winning percentage of the race favorites confuses me; I don't know how this proves that the element of luck is running rampant in this game, as far as the "long-term" is concerned.

Don't forget...the race favorite is established by the wagers of uninformed AND informed bettors...so the luck factor alone should not be given credit for the favorites' high winning percentage.

It's anybody's guess what the winning percentage of these favorites would be if the "informed" money were somehow kept out of the wagering pools...but I would wager heavily that it wouldn't be anywhere near 35%.

I agree, long term means from the time you become successful until you quit playing or die. The determination of when "success" starts is hard to define, but I would venture to say that it could be as short as a month or a meet, as long as it continues after that point. So, I suppose one could be skilled and not even know it, if he doesn't stick with it. He could become very "unskilled" very quickly.

Regarding the public's 35% hit rate, the law of large numbers accounts for that, if you consider 35% winners the benchmark. But even though the public hits 35% winners doesn't mean the public, as a whole is successful, because they aren't, only the skilled wagerers among them are.

dkithore
01-11-2013, 10:36 AM
Regarding the public's 35% hit rate, the law of large numbers accounts for that, if you consider 35% winners the benchmark. But even though the public hits 35% winners doesn't mean the public, as a whole is successful, because they aren't, only the skilled wagerers among them are.

Evidently you and Thask have a good mind and insights about this game. I appreciate it.

lansdale
01-11-2013, 02:18 PM
Hi Thask,

You know how much respect I have for you both as a person and handicapper, but I must disagree that the 'long run' is a matter of opinion.

From what I understand of the new Maboussin book, it reflects the influence of Taleb and the behavioral economists, and strongly emphasizes the human tendency to greatly underrate variance. Thus, it also strongly counsels the need for large sample sizes, and the foolishness of being influenced by recent outcomes.

For blackjack players, a 99+% confidence interval, three standard deviations, is considered an acceptable measure of the long run. I believe that this is the CI used to determine N0, the number of rounds required to double for a given BJ bank, which varies according to rules and conditions - worse games will have higher N0. This could range for 12k rounds for a very good game, to 75k or 100k for the opposite.

From anecdotal evidence of horseplayers with successful betting models (and I would appreciate any input on this), 2,500-3,000 races seems to be the established measure of long run performance, although it's clear that ROI is clearly correlated with the number of required races.

Your other point - that former winning players could lose their edge - is really unrelated and seems almost too obvious to mention. But it would seem to me that, re horseracing, it's the conditions and not player skill which have changed most dramatically in recent years. They've been discussed often on this site: the growth of the influence of computers, and more significantly, the influence of the rebates of big-money players. Skilled players may be able to compete skill-wise with whales, but not with the rebates which allow them to churn much larger bankrolls. Think of the poker analogy - your skill has not lessened, but been nullified by your opponents' stack size.

Best,

lansdale

To my knowledge, there is no set definition for the terms "long run"...or 'long term". The meaning changes according to the individual's own opinion.

My opinion is that, in a chaotic activity like horse race betting...long term should mean the entirety of a horseplayer's betting career. I mean...how can you call yourself a "long-term winner" in the game...if you eventually end up broke, and are forced to abandon your betting career prematurely. :)

In spite of what most gamblers might think, I happen to think that it's very possible for a long-time winner to eventually lose his edge on the competition...and end up broke -- even after many years of successful play. I know a couple of guys who fit this description to a "T".

Your question about the winning percentage of the race favorites confuses me; I don't know how this proves that the element of luck is running rampant in this game, as far as the "long-term" is concerned.

Don't forget...the race favorite is established by the wagers of uninformed AND informed bettors...so the luck factor alone should not be given credit for the favorites' high winning percentage.

It's anybody's guess what the winning percentage of these favorites would be if the "informed" money were somehow kept out of the wagering pools...but I would wager heavily that it wouldn't be anywhere near 35%.

Robert Goren
01-11-2013, 02:32 PM
From my experience, when former winners turn into losers, it usually has to do with something happening in their life outside of horse racing. The only case I think of where it was horse racing related was when a guy I knew tried to making a living at it. The stress was too much for him. I got a "real" job again and he went back to being a winning player.

thaskalos
01-11-2013, 03:26 PM
Hi Thask,

You know how much respect I have for you both as a person and handicapper, but I must disagree that the 'long run' is a matter of opinion.

From what I understand of the new Maboussin book, it reflects the influence of Taleb and the behavioral economists, and strongly emphasizes the human tendency to greatly underrate variance. Thus, it also strongly counsels the need for large sample sizes, and the foolishness of being influenced by recent outcomes.

For blackjack players, a 99+% confidence interval, three standard deviations, is considered an acceptable measure of the long run. I believe that this is the CI used to determine N0, the number of rounds required to double for a given BJ bank, which varies according to rules and conditions - worse games will have higher N0. This could range for 12k rounds for a very good game, to 75k or 100k for the opposite.

From anecdotal evidence of horseplayers with successful betting models (and I would appreciate any input on this), 2,500-3,000 races seems to be the established measure of long run performance, although it's clear that ROI is clearly correlated with the number of required races.

Your other point - that former winning players could lose their edge - is really unrelated and seems almost too obvious to mention. But it would seem to me that, re horseracing, it's the conditions and not player skill which have changed most dramatically in recent years. They've been discussed often on this site: the growth of the influence of computers, and more significantly, the influence of the rebates of big-money players. Skilled players may be able to compete skill-wise with whales, but not with the rebates which allow them to churn much larger bankrolls. Think of the poker analogy - your skill has not lessened, but been nullified by your opponents' stack size.

Best,

lansdale

I appreciate the kind words, my friend...and I assure you that I feel likewise about you.

I agree with your definition of "long run" as it applies to blackjack players...but I can't help but think that the current horseplaying world is a little different. The enormous payoffs associated with some of the super-exotics practically dictate -- in my opinion, of course -- that the "long run" be extended a lot further than the perimeters of the past. IMO...the long run should not be dominated by one monsterous fluky payoff.

I equate this to the difference between tournament poker, and the version of poker played in the cash games. The tournament player can easily deceive himself into thinking that he is a long-term winner...so he should demand a much longer timeframe over which to assess his prowess as a player. The cash game grinder, on the other hand, can get away with a much shorter "long run"...mainly because of the lesser role that luck plays in his type of game.

Please allow me to emphasize that this is strictly my OPINION...and I could easily be wrong.

Lastly...I agree that winning players become losers because of changing conditions -- rather than an erosion of their skills -- but these changing conditiond do not necessarilly have to occur in the game; they could -- as Robert Goren has already pointed out -- just as easily occur in the life of the gambler himself.

I have seen it repeatedly where a player's life changes in some unfortunate way...and he is no longer able to operate with the coolheadedness that he employed prior -- which is what our games demand.

His skills may remain intact...but his edge on the competition is gone.

My best wishes to you and yours for a happy and prosperous New Year.

DeltaLover
01-11-2013, 03:35 PM
This thread started as a book review and turned to be one of the most interesting we had lately.

I think that here we are touching several concepts that can be the topic of individual threads like the relation of skill to luck, the definition of the long run, the gradual mutation of the game as time goes by and probably some more.

I think that understanding the impact of skill and luck is of fundamental value for a horse bettor. There is a great deal of misunderstanding when it comes to them and I believe that resolving this confusion can help someone become a better bettor.

I would set as the starting point not the question of the actual rate of skill versus luck but the mere existence of skill in this game.

Does really present a domain allowing skill and real expertize to exist?

How can we prove or reject such a hypothesis?

Even more, what exactly is the skill we are referring to?

Note that the skill of just predicting the winner of a race is not what we are talking about here. It is more than obvious that this is something completely achievable and we can easily prove it analyzing the behavior of the public. Use for example a chi square test for the favorite of the race and you will be convinced that yes, there certainly exists skill in the selection of the winner and in handicapping in general.

However, for us as bettors this concept is completely irrelative. The real skill we need is not to predict the winner of the race with high accuracy, instead it is the ability to detect errors in the estimate of the public and try to capitalize on them.

Most, if not all the horse players have convinced themselves that indeed they are smarter than the public and can overplay it. This is what makes them to return to the betting windows over and over even after many years of evidence that this is not the case.

The question I have to ask at this point, is how you can be sure that this game is conditioned to allow the development of this type of skill and expertize? What is the thought process that can lead to such a conclusion? More than this what kind of evidence do we need to prove this conjecture?

raybo
01-11-2013, 03:51 PM
Lastly...I agree that winning players become losers because of changing conditions -- rather than an erosion of their skills -- but these changing conditiond do not necessarilly have to occur in the game; they could -- as Robert Goren has already pointed out -- just as easily occur in the life of the gambler himself.

I have seen it repeatedly where a player's life changes in some unfortunate way...and he is no longer able to operate with the coolheadedness that he employed prior -- which is what our games demand.

His skills may remain intact...but his edge on the competition is gone.

My best wishes to you and yours for a happy and prosperous New Year.

Well, heck, I thought that's what I was saying in my earlier post. I guess I was wrong, or nobody read it. :confused:

raybo
01-11-2013, 04:05 PM
For blackjack players, a 99+% confidence interval, three standard deviations, is considered an acceptable measure of the long run. I believe that this is the CI used to determine N0, the number of rounds required to double for a given BJ bank, which varies according to rules and conditions - worse games will have higher N0. This could range for 12k rounds for a very good game, to 75k or 100k for the opposite.

From anecdotal evidence of horseplayers with successful betting models (and I would appreciate any input on this), 2,500-3,000 races seems to be the established measure of long run performance, although it's clear that ROI is clearly correlated with the number of required races.



lansdale

Are you seriously trying to compare black jack gambling to horse race gambling? IMO, they cannot be compared directly, only very generally, because there are so many more variables involved in horse racing.

"Long term" is dependent on the frequency a player plays, the type of bet he is making, the tracks he plays, etc.. Once a player becomes consistently profitable, meet after meet, or year after year, the type of wagers he is making, and his capacity to continue to evolve with the game and remain consistent in all aspects of his play, usually will determine how long he must remain profitable, in order for future success to to be logically expected.

Changes in the conditions of racing is a given, and the successful player overcomes those changes. When he ceases to be able to overcome those changes, and/or the other changes in his life, he is no longer successful, and his skill as a player has diminished. In other words, he has ceased to continue evolving with the game and in his play, and/or, can no longer perform at previous levels, in all aspects of his play.

DeltaLover
01-11-2013, 05:06 PM
Are you seriously trying to compare black jack gambling to horse race gambling?


I do not think that Thaskalos meant that he will handicap a race using some mutation of a card counting method nor that he will play black jack following a handicapping method resembling a port of speed figures to it.

By definition there are 'many variables' involved in any form of gambling (otherwise it would have been called something else).

Aside from the technicalities though all forms of gambling share the same fundamental characteristics, those of risk and reward. Based on this principle we create an abstraction level encapsulating any possible stochastic event in such a way that the game specific procedures just become an implementation detail to a higher level macroscopic view.

Conclusions drawn from this abstraction level are by default applicable to any underlined game, serving as generic and global rules.

raybo
01-11-2013, 05:32 PM
I do not think that Thaskalos meant that he will handicap a race using some mutation of a card counting method nor that he will play black jack following a handicapping method resembling a port of speed figures to it.

By definition there are 'many variables' involved in any form of gambling (otherwise it would have been called something else).

Aside from the technicalities though all forms of gambling share the same fundamental characteristics, those of risk and reward. Based on this principle we create an abstraction level encapsulating any possible stochastic event in such a way that the game specific procedures just become an implementation detail to a higher level macroscopic view.

Conclusions drawn from this abstraction level are by default applicable to any underlined game, serving as generic and global rules.

I quoted lansdale, not Thaskalos. Your post means very little to my "uneducated" mind, and obvious lack of vocabulary. In other words I have almost no idea what the heck you said, and the little bit I did understand, I think, has nothing to do with my posting.

DeltaLover
01-11-2013, 05:40 PM
I quoted lansdale, not Thaskalos. Your post means very little to my "uneducated" mind, and obvious lack of vocabulary. In other words I have almost no idea what the heck you said, and the little bit I did understand, I think, has nothing to do with my posting.

I am trying to say that all forms of gambling have enough communalties allowing them to be treated homeomorphically to a certain extend.

This means that we can define rules and behaviors that are applicable to BJ, horses and baccarat regardless of their obvious differences...

I quoted lansdale, not Thaskalos.

sorry, I got confused...

raybo
01-11-2013, 06:10 PM
I am trying to say that all forms of gambling have enough communalties allowing them to be treated homeomorphically to a certain extend.

This means that we can define rules and behaviors that are applicable to BJ, horses and baccarat regardless of their obvious differences...



sorry, I got confused...

Why not tell us what "homeomorphically" means, or are we supposed to look it up in Websters? I've never even seen that word before, much less it's meaning.

Almost anything can be said to have certain things in common, that has very little to do with putting money down on a horse or horses, hopefully with some degree of confidence. In black jack you're not playing against every player in a pool, only against the dealer's hand, without busting out, and the inherent house odds. If you know how to count and don't push it too hard with bet increases over the moon and get banned, you can beat BJ enough to be profitable. Horse racing has hundreds more variables than BJ, the 2 "games" are not on the same level at all, IMHO.

DeltaLover
01-11-2013, 06:18 PM
homeomorphically: close similarity (mostly used in Chemistry)

homeo: means same, similar (like in the word homeopathy)

morphical: means shape, face (since you do some programming you probably nowthe word polymorphism which is using the same root)

raybo
01-11-2013, 06:23 PM
homeomorphically: close similarity (mostly used in Chemistry)

homeo: means same, similar (like in the word homeopathy)

morphical: means shape, face (since you do some programming you probably nowthe word polymorphism which is using the same root)

Thanks for the word knowledge, but I do very little programming, and usually have to have some help via Excel tutorial sites. But, even though I can't compete with you scholars in vocabulary, I do know a thing or two about horse racing, and black jack.

DeltaLover
01-11-2013, 06:30 PM
Thanks for the word knowledge, but I do very little programming, and usually have to have some help via Excel tutorial sites. But, even though I can't compete with you scholars in vocabulary, I do know a thing or two about horse racing, and black jack.

Certainly I am not even close to a scholar in vocabulary (or anything else) and more than this, there is absolutely no competition going on here, we leave it for the selections threads :)

As far as knowing about horse racing, again I still do not feel I know enough and I am always learning new things here at PA....

dkithore
01-12-2013, 04:48 AM
Why not tell us what "homeomorphically" means, or are we supposed to look it up in Websters? I've never even seen that word before, much less it's meaning.



I certainly enjoy your wit and implied humor that goes with it. Not to mention your desire to help others.

Pace Cap'n
01-12-2013, 08:08 AM
Words that mean what you want them to mean...

homeomorphically

The word you've entered isn't in the dictionary.

merriam-webster.com/dictionary/homeomorphically (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/homeomorphically)





"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less."




Never use a big word when a diminutive one will suffice.

DeltaLover
01-12-2013, 09:35 AM
The word you've entered isn't in the dictionary.


try this :

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/homeomorphism

traynor
01-12-2013, 10:12 AM
try this :

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/homeomorphism

Try this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discourse_community

He who controls the discourse controls the community. He who defines the discourse as "acceptable" or "unacceptable" in a particular discourse community--if those definitions are mindlessly accepted by others in the community--becomes the gatekeeper. All incredibly tacky, boring, and unfit behavior for anyone who made it past Comm 101 or an introductory course in rhetoric.

lansdale
01-12-2013, 02:00 PM
Hi Pace Cap'n,

Probably more accurate to say that the word is not in any dictionary of less than 500k words. Or, as here, in a math dictionary.

Worth remembering that there is much more to handicapping than can be found on Pace & Cap.

http://mathworld.wolfram.com/Homeomorphic.html

Cheers,

lansdale

Words that mean what you want them to mean...

homeomorphically

The word you've entered isn't in the dictionary.

merriam-webster.com/dictionary/homeomorphically (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/homeomorphically)





"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less."




Never use a big word when a diminutive one will suffice.

traynor
01-12-2013, 03:03 PM
Everyone should be able to post their postings in whatever syntax they are comfortable with, without regard for playing to the audience. Sometimes simplifying concepts destroys their ability to illuminate those who want most to understand them. Specifically, "dumbing down" often obscures more than it clarifies.

Conversely, it should be understood (and usefully accepted) by readers that not all concepts can be adequately converted into junior high school vocabulary and syntax. One should consider the value of the posting, and the concept(s), not whether or not the terminology can be absorbed mindlessly. If winning required no more than junior high school intelligence or cognitive abilities, there would be no profit left for anyone. It would have all been taken already by the bubblegummers and mallcrawlers.

HUSKER55
01-13-2013, 04:48 AM
LUCK IS WHERE PREPARATION AND OPPORTUNITY MEET.

Being a true Boy Scout and I am always properly and correctly prepared then that means that when my horse does not win...THE RACE WAS FIXED :D

lansdale
01-13-2013, 04:22 PM
Hi raybo,

I take your point on the differences between BJ and horseracing. But as DL correctly said in his reply to you, math can be used in evaluation in many kinds of performance, either of a specific game (such as BJ) or of a person (such as a handicapper). A much better analogy with handicapping is Wall St.. Both database players and Wall St. fund managers use historical data to make investment decisions. Both can be evaluated on the quality of their performance.

The 'long run' is, of course, in theory, infinite. But for the purpose of successful gambling, many players use the 3 SD figure I referenced, as an acceptable substitute. As I said, anecdotally, some successful players have mentioned the 2,500-3000 figure, as the range within which their results stabilized. This may be useful as a 'long-run' benchmark for handicapping, but clearly, as with BJ, higher ROI implies a lower acceptable long run, and lower ROI, a higher long run.

If you substitute 'handicapping skill' for database, in the case of non-database players, I would conjecture that the same race total would substitute as an acceptable measurement. You mention, frequency, race type, and other factors as preventing accurate measurement, but surely, all of these factors fall under the range of 'variance'. And as you say yourself, to the extent that the non-database (or more properly non-blackbox) player is able to handle them is part of the measure of 'skill'. As Maboussin says the lower the range of variance, the higher the level of skill, and vice versa.

Cheers,

lansdale




Are you seriously trying to compare black jack gambling to horse race gambling? IMO, they cannot be compared directly, only very generally, because there are so many more variables involved in horse racing.

"Long term" is dependent on the frequency a player plays, the type of bet he is making, the tracks he plays, etc.. Once a player becomes consistently profitable, meet after meet, or year after year, the type of wagers he is making, and his capacity to continue to evolve with the game and remain consistent in all aspects of his play, usually will determine how long he must remain profitable, in order for future success to to be logically expected.

Changes in the conditions of racing is a given, and the successful player overcomes those changes. When he ceases to be able to overcome those changes, and/or the other changes in his life, he is no longer successful, and his skill as a player has diminished. In other words, he has ceased to continue evolving with the game and in his play, and/or, can no longer perform at previous levels, in all aspects of his play.

raybo
01-13-2013, 06:00 PM
Hi raybo,

I take your point on the differences between BJ and horseracing. But as DL correctly said in his reply to you, math can be used in evaluation in many kinds of performance, either of a specific game (such as BJ) or of a person (such as a handicapper). A much better analogy with handicapping is Wall St.. Both database players and Wall St. fund managers use historical data to make investment decisions. Both can be evaluated on the quality of their performance.

The 'long run' is, of course, in theory, infinite. But for the purpose of successful gambling, many players use the 3 SD figure I referenced, as an acceptable substitute. As I said, anecdotally, some successful players have mentioned the 2,500-3000 figure, as the range within which their results stabilized. This may be useful as a 'long-run' benchmark for handicapping, but clearly, as with BJ, higher ROI implies a lower acceptable long run, and lower ROI, a higher long run.

If you substitute 'handicapping skill' for database, in the case of non-database players, I would conjecture that the same race total would substitute as an acceptable measurement. You mention, frequency, race type, and other factors as preventing accurate measurement, but surely, all of these factors fall under the range of 'variance'. And as you say yourself, to the extent that the non-database (or more properly non-blackbox) player is able to handle them is part of the measure of 'skill'. As Maboussin says the lower the range of variance, the higher the level of skill, and vice versa.

Cheers,

lansdale

Then we disagree. That's nothing unusual.

dkithore
01-26-2013, 04:53 AM
This book Success Equation triggered me to put some thoughts together in a worksheet. This questions and answers is giving me more confidence in focusing on live contenders. It is work in progress and I have begun testing it. You may add your own questions.

Caveat: This is for paper and pencil guys. Not aimed at savvy high tech handicappers who are more advanced than me. Use this only after you have done the selection using your own method. For me it is calibrated new pace, speed figures (from a private vendor) and want to focus on live contenders. Perhaps this is more qualitative aspect than numbers. Here they are:

1 Is horse competitive at this class level?
2 Has it won at the distance?
3 Has the horse performed well at the course?
4 Has it won at this surface and track condition?
5 Is this barrier (post) position helpful?
6 Is this his preferred jockey?
7 Does the track favor his running style
8 Is it getting bet?
9 Is he getting bet below his previous odds?
10 Does he show good form in last few races?
11 Was there trouble in the last race?
12 Is there any equipment change today?
13 Has he reached his best numbers in recent races?