Poker Omaha

Poker Omaha


According to Omaha Poker Rules, there are four betting rounds in a complete game – exactly the same as in Texas Holdem Poker. In Omaha Holden, the dealer deals each player their own four private cards face-down.

Each bet on the first two rounds of betting is set at the lower limit of the stakes structure. For example in a $5/$10 game, all bets and raises are $5 for the first two rounds (after private cards are dealt and once the flop is spread in center of table).

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The last two rounds of betting (turn card and river) are set at the higher limit of the stakes structure. For example in a $5/$10 game, all bets and raises are $10 for the last two rounds.

One bet plus three raises (four total bets) are the maximum amount of bets allowed per betting round. This would consist of (1) a bet, (2) a raise, (3) a re-raise, and (4) a cap. The term cap is used to describe the 3rd raise in a round since betting is then capped and cannot be raised anymore. Once any player has made the third raise (capped the pot), then players will have only the option of calling or folding.

Check-raising is allowed in all online poker games.

Poker Kansas City Low Ball

Poker Kansas


Kansas City Low Ball

Kansas City Lowball Poker is played with a standard 52-card deck and one Joker. The Joker is considered to be the lowest card not present in a hand. Straights and flushes do not count against the poker player.

Players are dealt five cards face down, in turn, in rotation. A round of betting occurs. Players are required to bet or fold. The players who remain in the pot have the option to improve their hand by replacing cards in their hands with new ones. A player texas holdem poker may draw up to five consecutive cards. After all poker players have drawn players a round of betting occurs. The best possible low hand is 2-3-4-5-7, not of the same suit. The lowest five card poker hand wins the pot. In the event of a tie the pot is split equally among winning hands.

The game ends when one player or team reaches 100 points. In the rare event of a tie 2 players or teams finish even beyond the 100 point mark there are various tie-breaking options, determined by the players by mutual consent. The game can be declared a draw, or an extra hand or hands can be played until the tie is broken. Or the players can extend the game to a fixed number of points 20, 30 or 50.

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Betting arbitrage, miracle bets, sure bets, sports arbitraging is a particular case of arbitrage arising on betting markets due to bookmakers’ different opinions on either event outcomes or plain errors. By placing one bet per each outcome with different betting companies, the bettor can make a profit. In the bettors’ slang an arbitrage is often referred to as an arb; people who use arbitrage are called arbers. A typical arb is around 2 percent, often less; however 4-5 percent are occasionally seen and during some special events they might reach 20 percent. Arbitrage betting involves relatively large sums of money stakes are bigger than in normal betting.

Bookmakers generally disapprove of arbers, and restrict or close the accounts of those who they suspect of engaging in arbitrage betting. Although arbitrage betting has existed since the beginnings of bookmaking, the rise of the Internet, odds-comparison websites and betting exchanges have enabled the practice to be easier to perform. On the other hand, these changes also made it easier for bookmakers to keep their odds in line with the market.

Chicago Poker Card Game

Chicago Poker Card Game

The poker-related card game called Chicago is one of the most popular card games in Sweden today. Relying on the keeping of score instead of the placing of bets, it is suitable even for environments such as schools, where gambling is often prohibited. The game exists in countless versions, so here a somewhat arbitrarily chosen basic game will be followed by a number of possible variations.

Hand scores

The backbone of the game is that each poker hand has its own point value, as given in this table:

One pair – 1 point.
Two pair – 2 points.
Three of a kind – 3 points.
Straight – 4 points.
Flush – 5 points.
Full House – 6 points.
Four of a kind – 7 points
Straight flush – 8 points

See More : Blind Chicago Poker

Basic rules

Chicago is played with a standard 52-card deck. Each player is dealt five cards. The objective is to reach 52 points.
Exchanges and hand scoring

The players are allowed to exchange any number of their cards. If a player chooses to exchange one card only, he may choose “one up”, meaning that he is dealt one card faced up, which he can either accept, or instead take the next card unseen. After the exchanges, the player with the best hand and only one player gets points for his hand. Then follows another round of exchanges, but no hand scoring.

Now, the first player begins by playing one card. Ordinary whist rules apply, but the players keep their cards collected by themselves. The player who wins the last trick gets 5 points. Also, the player with the best hand whether it is the same player or not gets points for his hand. Please Note: After achieving 42 points a player is no longer permitted to trade cards as they normally would. Instead, they are dealt 6 cards at the beginning of the game and must discard one before the first scoring round. No further exchanges are permitted.

Blind Chicago Poker

Chicago Poker


After the second exchange, any player can choose to play Chicago. In this case, he pledges himself to win all the tricks of the game. If he does, he is awarded 15 points, but if he fails, the penalty is just as harsh: -15 points.

Blind Chicago

Sometimes, a player given five cards below ten either inclusive or exclusive – must be decides before game 賭場 starts is allowed to replace them before the exchanges begin.
Some play with 3 exchanges instead of 2. Then of course, scoring for hands will be made after both the first and the second exchange.

Some do not use the “one up” rule.

Often, a game will require that a player declare “Chicago” before they can win the game. The declaration is accepted regardless of whether one wins or loses the 5 tricks.
Often, one wants to give higher rewards than 7 or 8 points for four of a kind and Straight flush respectively. There are several ways to achieve this, most notably by elevating the player immediately to 52 points, or lowering either all players or one player of the holder’s choice to 0 points, or a combination of these. Some also separate the Royal Flush from the Straight Flush, awarding 9 points for a Royal Flush. Holding a Royal flush usually means immediate victory.

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The confusion is great as to what scores are appointed in the case of Chicago. Some will argue that no player will get any points at all besides the +15 or -15, whilst others will allow other points to be awarded. The +5 for the game, however, can never be stacked with the +15 for Chicago. Yet another variation is to award +13/-13 points for Chicago and the declaring player gets to go first. In that variation it is forbidden to declare Chicago unless the player has reached 13 points, ruling out the possibility of a negative score choi bai.
Some prescribe that any player with 45 points or more is not allowed to replace any cards.

Some require that after and not in the same hand as a player reaches 52 points, he must win the game once more before he actually wins. This handles the possibility that more than one player reach 52 points in the same hand.

Some award 10 points instead of 5 if the last trick is taken with a deuce. If this variant is employed, 30 points must also be awarded for a Chicago hand successfully ended with a deuce.

Twenty Gambling Questions

Twenty Gambling

Did you ever lose time from work or school due to gambling?
Has gambling ever made your home life unhappy?
Did gambling affect your reputation?
Have you ever felt remorse after gambling?
Did you ever gamble to get money with which to pay debts or otherwise solve financial difficulties?
Did gambling cause a decrease in your ambition or efficiency?
After losing did you feel you must return as soon as possible and win back your losses?
After a win did you have a strong urge to return and win more?
Did you often gamble until your last dollar was gone?
Did you ever borrow to finance your gambling?

See More : Draw Poker Jacks or Better
Have you ever sold anything to finance gambling?
Were you reluctant to use gambling money for normal expenditures?
Did gambling make you careless of the welfare of yourself or your family?
Did you ever gamble longer than you had planned?
Have you ever gambled to escape worry, trouble, boredom or loneliness?
Have you ever committed, or considered committing, an illegal act to finance gambling?
Did gambling cause you to have difficulty in sleeping?
Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations create within you an urge to gamble?
Did you ever have an urge to celebrate any good fortune by a few hours of gambling?
Have you ever considered self destruction or suicide as a result of your gambling?

Most compulsive gamblers will answer yes to at least seven of these questions.


Draw Poker Jacks or Better

Draw Poker Jacks or Better

Draw Poker Jacks or Better is played with a standard 52-card deck and one Joker. The Joker may be used as an Ace or as any card that completes a straight, flush, or a straight flush.
Players are dealt five cards face down, one at a time, in rotation. A round of betting begins (check, bet, call, raise, or fold). A player’s hand must qualify with a pair of Jacks or better (higher) to open the pot. If no player has a pair of Jacks or better, the hand ends and the ante remains in the pot. A player who opens the pot must show openers, whether the hand is called or not, in order to win the pot. The remaining players may discard any number of their original cards and have the same number of cards replaced by the dealer. Another round of betting occurs. The player with the highest ranking five-card poker hand wins. Five Aces is the best possible hand (four Aces and the Joker). In the event of a tie, the pot is split equally.

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In most jurisdictions worldwide, gambling is limited to persons over the age of license in most countries where casinos are permitted.

Customers gamble by playing games of chance, in some cases with an element of skill, such as craps, roulette, baccarat, blackjack, and video poker. Most games played have mathematically determined odds that ensure the house has at all times an advantage over the players. This can be expressed more precisely by the notion of expected value, which is uniformly negative from the player’s perspective. This advantage is called the house edge. In games such as poker where players play against each other, the house takes a commission called the rake. Casinos sometimes give out complimentary items to gamblers.

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Payout is the percentage won by players.

Casinos in the USA say that a player staking money won from the casino is playing with house money.

Video Lottery Machines slot machines have become one of the most popular form of gambling in casinos. Recently, investigative reports have been calling into question whether the modern day slot machine is addictive. There are almost 900 casinos now in the United States, with that number steadily growing as more states seek to legalize casinos. 38 states now have some form of casino gambling. Relatively small places such as Las Vegas are best known for gambling; larger cities such as Chicago are not defined by their casinos in spite of the large turnover.

Las Vegas has the largest concentration of casinos in the United States. Based on revenue, Atlantic City, New Jersey ranks second and the Chicago region third.

This entry was posted in Casino.

Casino Security

Casino Security

Casino security refers to the measures that are taken at casinos to protect the establishment’s money and property and the patrons. The security protects the casino and its customers from violent crime, theft, and other inappropriate behavior.

Given the relatively large amounts of currency that are handled within a casino, the temptation exists for both patrons and staff to commit crimes. Many casinos take security measures to prevent theft and other crime. The most basic level of security today consists of cameras located throughout the property operated by highly trained individuals who attempt to locate cheating and stealing by both players and employees.

While casino security of the past was nothing more than a muscle man, today’s security is a multi-million dollar investment that is as complex as a police department. Modern casino security is usually divided between a physical security force and a specialized surveillance department that operates the casino’s closed circuit television system known in the industry as the eye in the sky in an effort to detect any misconduct by both guests and employees alike. Both of these specialized casino departments work very closely with each other to ensure the safety of both guests as well as the casino’s assets, and have been quite successful in preventing crime. Some casinos also have catwalks in the ceiling above the casino floor. These catwalks allow surveillance personnel to look directly down, through one-way glass, on the activities at the tables and/or slot machines.

See More : comps are complimentary items given out by casinos to encourage players to gamble

In addition to cameras and other technological measures, casinos also enforce security through rules of conduct and behavior; for example, players at card games are usually required to keep their hands visible at all times.

The amount of security that is used at a casino is determined based on local laws and ordinances and what the prosecutors in the region are willing to act upon.

comps are complimentary items given out by casinos to encourage players to gamble

2009 World Series of Poker Champion Joseph Cada

2009 World Series of Poker Champion Joseph Cada

In the context of casinos, comps are complimentary items given out by casinos to encourage players to gamble. The amount of comps that a player is given usually depends on what game they are playing, how much they are betting, and how long they have played. Most casinos have hosts who are responsible for giving out free items and contacting players to bring them back to the casino. Pit bosses can also award comps at table games. Most casinos now require a player to have a player’s club or similar card, so that their play can be tracked and comps awarded.

The lowest level of comp available at most casinos is free alcohol and other beverages. Many casinos provide free drinks to anyone who is gambling.

The second level of comp that many players earn is free meals. Many casinos have several restaurants and may require more play to earn a comp to the higher end restaurant. Often the player is given a certain amount to spend, but sometimes, particularly with high rollers, the player may be given the right to order as much food as they want.

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The next level of comps is usually free hotel rooms. Many casinos have attached hotels, but those that don’t may have the ability to comp rooms to a hotel nearby. Many casino hotels have higher quality rooms, such as suites, villas, presidential suites and so on for bigger bettors. Many players who receive hotel rooms receive a package called RFB for room, food, and beverage or RF for smaller bettors, or jurisdictions where casinos are not allowed to give free alcohol.

Many casinos also offer other comps, especially to high rollers. These may include airfare reimbursement, limo rides, prostitution services, tickets to shows, golf, free concierge services, cash back, private gaming areas, and private jet service.

Casinos also frequently offer players comps by mail. These may be free bet offers, free meals, discounted or free rooms, or entries into tournaments or prize drawings.

This entry was posted in comps.

California Card Rooms

California Card Rooms

State law requires that every owner, lessee or employee of a gambling establishment obtain and, thereafter, maintain a valid state gambling license. The Bureau of Gambling Control Bureau investigates the qualifications of individuals who apply for state gambling licenses to determine whether they are suitable and to ensure that gambling is conducted honestly, competitively and free from criminal and corruptive elements.

Gambling License

An owner of a gambling establishment must apply for and obtain a valid state gambling license from the Bureau and the California Gambling Control Commission. The Bureau’s Licensing staff will conduct in-depth background investigations on applicants to determine whether they are suitable to hold a state gambling license. Suitability is determined by a number of factors including but not limited to the applicant’s honesty, integrity, general character, reputation, habits, and financial and criminal history.

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Additional Tables

The owner of a state-licensed gambling establishment who wishes to operate additional tables on a temporary or permanent basis must submit a request to operate additional tables to the Commission. The number of tables requested cannot exceed the total number of tables authorized under local and state law for the gambling establishment.

Game/Gaming Activity Approval

All controlled games pai-gow, poker, etc. and gaming activities jackpots, bonuses, tournaments, etc. must be approved by the Bureau and must comply with local gaming ordinances prior to their play at a licensed gambling establishment within California.

Video Slot Machines

Video Slot Machines

The video slot machine is a more recent innovation, with no moving parts at all – instead a graphical representation of one appears on screen. Since the player is essentially playing a computer game, the manufacturers are able to offer more interactive elements, such as advanced bonus games and advanced video graphics.

In addition, because there are no mechanical constraints on the design of video slot machines, most display five reels rather than three. This greatly expands the number of possibilities: a machine can have 50 or more symbols on a reel, giving odds as high as 300 million to 1 against – enough for even the largest jackpot. As there are so many combinations given by five reels, the manufacturers do not need to weight the payout symbols although some may still do so. Instead, higher paying symbols will typically appear only once or twice on each reel, while more common symbols, earning a more frequent payout, will appear many times.


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Video slot machines typically encourage the player to play multiple ‘lines’, so rather than simply taking the middle of the three symbols displayed on each reel, a line could go from top left to bottom right, or any of the other patterns specified by the manufacturer. As each symbol is equally likely, there is no difficulty for the manufacturer in allowing the player to take any or all of the possible lines on offer – the long-term return to player will be the same. The difference for the player is that the more lines he plays the more likely he is to get paid on a given spin – though of course he is betting more in the first place.

To avoid the feeling that the player’s money is simply ebbing away whereas a payout of 100 credits on a single line machine would be 100 bets, and the player would feel they had made a substantial win, on a 20 line machine, it would only be 5 bets and would not seem significant, manufacturers commonly offer bonus games, which can return many times their bet. The player is encouraged to keep playing to reach the bonus: even if he is losing, the bonus game could allow him to win back his losses.

Poker Ante

Poker Ante

An ante is a forced bet in which all players put an equal amount of money or chips into the pot before the deal begins. Often this is either a single unit a one-value or the smallest value in play or some other small amount; a proportion such as a half or a quarter of the minimum bet is also common. An ante paid by every player ensures that a player who folds every round will lose money though slowly, thus providing all players with an incentive, however small; to play the hand rather than toss it in when the opening bet reaches them.

Antes are the most common forced bet in draw poker and stud poker but are uncommon in games featuring blind bets see next section. However, some tournament formats of games featuring blinds impose an ante to discourage extremely tight play. Antes encourage players to play more loosely by lowering the cost of staying in the hand calling relative to the current pot size, offering better pot odds. With antes, more players stay in the hand, which increases pot size and makes for more interesting play. This is considered important to ensure good ratings for televised tournament final. Most televised high stakes cash games also use both blinds and antes. Televised cash games usually have one of the players pay for everyone, normally the dealer, to accelerate play. If there are six players for example, the dealer would toss six times the ante into the pot, paying for each person.

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In live cash games where the acting dealer changes each turn, it is not uncommon for the players to agree that the dealer or some other position relative to the button provides the ante for each player. This simplifies betting, but causes minor inequities if other players come and go or miss their turn to deal. During such times, the player can be given a special button indicating the need to pay an ante to the pot known as “posting”; see below upon their return. Some card rooms eliminate these inequities by always dealing all players into every hand whether they are present or not. In such cases casino staff or neighboring players under staff supervision will be expected to post antes and fold hands on behalf of absent players as necessary.

Internet Casinos

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Online casinos, also known as virtual casinos or Internet casinos are online versions of traditional brick and mortar casinos. Online casinos enable gamblers to play and wager on casino games through the Internet.
Online casinos generally offer odds and payback percentages that are comparable to land-based casinos. Some online casinos claim higher payback percentages for slot machine games, and some publish payout percentage audits on their websites. Assuming that the online casino is using an appropriately programmed random number generator, table games like blackjack have an established house edge. The payout percentage for these games is established by the rules of the game.
Many online casinos lease or purchase their software from companies like Microgaming, Realtime Gaming, Playtech, International Game Technology and CryptoLogic Inc.
Online casinos can be divided into two groups based on their interface: web-based and download-only casinos. Some casinos offer both interfaces.
Some casinos offer ‘Live gaming’, either exclusively, or as part of a wider online casino offering. In live online casinos, popular casino games such as roulette and blackjack are dealt by real dealers in casino studios, in an attempt to convey more of the atmosphere of a physical casino. Player actions including chat such as ‘hit’ in the game of blackjack may be transmitted to the dealer; in some online casinos more than one player may ‘sit’ at a particular ‘seat’ on the table, and in this case there is no interactivity between player and dealer, the question of which players requested the extra card that the dealer dealt and which chose to ‘stand’ will be handled by the software. It is usual for players to be able to observe a video feed of the action, and equally common for players to opt to turn it off, if they lack the bandwidth – as the cards are read by OCR and other technology, the video feed is only ever a visual cue.

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Web-based online casinos are websites where users may play casino games without downloading software to the local computer. Games are mainly represented in the browser plugins Macromedia Flash, Macromedia Shockwave, or Java and require browser support for these plugins. Also, bandwidth is needed since all graphics, sounds and animations are loaded through the web via the plugin. Some online casinos also allow gameplay through a plain HTML interface. Apple devices such as iPod, iPad and iPhone cannot play Flash games as the technology is not supported.
Download-based online casinos require the download of the software client in order to play and wager on the casino games offered. The online casino software connects to the casino service provider and handles contact without browser support. Download-based online casinos generally run faster than web-based online casinos since the graphics and sound programs are located within the software client, rather than having to be loaded from the Internet. On the other hand, the initial download and installation of a download-based online casino client does take time. As with any download from the Internet, the risk of the program containing malware does exist. Still the graphics and sounds at download-based online casinos are most of the time much better than those at web-based online casinos.

home games play poker

home games play poker

All casinos and many home games play poker by what are called table stakes rules, which state that each player starts each deal with a certain stake, and plays that deal with that stake. A player may not remove money from the table or add money from his or her pocket during the play of a hand. In essence, table stakes rules creates a maximum and a minimum buy-in amount for cash game poker as well as rules for adding and removing the stake from play. A player also may not take a portion of their money or stake off the table, unless they opt to leave the game and remove their entire stake from play. Players are not allowed to hide or misrepresent the amount of their stake from other players and must truthfully disclose the amount when asked.

Common among inexperienced players is the act of “going south” after winning a big pot, which is to take a portion of your stake out of play, often as an attempt to hedge one’s risk after a win. This is also known as “ratholing” or “reducing” and, while totally permissible in most other casino games, is not permitted in poker.

See More : The dead man’s hand is a two-pair poker hand

Table stakes are the rule in most cash poker games because it allows players with vastly different bankrolls a reasonable amount of protection when playing with one another. They are usually set in relation to the blinds. For example, in a $1/2 No Limit cash game, the minimum stake is often set at $40 while maximum stake is often set at $200, or 20 and 100 big blinds respectively.

This also requires some special rules to handle the case when a player is faced with a bet that he cannot call with his available stake.

This entry was posted in Poker.

The dead man’s hand is a two-pair poker hand

The dead man's hand is a two-pair poker hand
The dead man’s hand is a two-pair poker hand, namely aces and eights. This card combination gets its name from a legend that it was the five-card-draw hand held by Wild Bill Hickok, when he was murdered on August 2, 1876, in Saloon No. 10 at Deadwood, South Dakota.
According to the popular version, Hickok’s final hand included the aces and eights of both black suits. As Hickok’s biographer, Joseph Rosa puts it: the accepted version is that the cards were the ace of spades, the ace of clubs, two black eights clubs and spades, and the queen of clubs as the kicker. However, Rosa says no contemporary source for this exact hand can be found. The earliest detailed reference to the dead man’s hand is 1886, where it was described as a full house consisting of three jacks and a pair of tens.
In accounts that mention two aces and eights, there are various claims regarding the identity of Hickok’s fifth card, suggestions that he had discarded one card and/or that the draw was curtailed by the shooting and Hickok therefore never received his fifth card.
In the HBO television historical drama series Deadwood, a nine of diamonds is depicted, although the show posits that another player concocted the hand, to further his own newsworthiness. An episode of Ripley’s Believe it or Not shows Hickok holding a queen of clubs. An episode of Quantum Leap also shows Sam’s love interest holding a Dead Man’s Hand.

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Historical displays in the town of Deadwood, including one in a reconstruction of the original Saloon No. 10, also show the nine of diamonds as the fifth card. The Lucky Nugget Gambling Hall, which holds the historic site of Saloon No. 10, instead displays a jack of diamonds. The Adams Museum in Deadwood has a display that claims to be the actual squeezer cards held by Hickok. The hand is: ace of diamonds, ace of clubs, eight of hearts, eight of spades, and the queen of hearts. The Stardust on the Las Vegas Strip has used a five of diamonds in related displays and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Homicide Division uses the dead man’s hand in its insignia, as does the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System.
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Mahjong, sometimes spelled Mah Jongg, is a game that originated in China, commonly played by four players with some three-player variations found in Korea and Japan. The four player table version should not be confused with the popular Western single player tile matching computer game Mahjong solitaire, which is a recent invention and completely different from the table game. Similar to the Western card game rummy, mahjong is a game of skill, strategy and calculation and involves a certain degree of chance. In Asia, mahjong is also popularly played as a gambling game though it may just as easily be played recreationally.

The game is played with a set of 136 tiles based on Chinese characters and symbols, although some regional variations use a different number of tiles. In most variations, each player begins by receiving thirteen tiles. In turn players draw and discard tiles until they complete a legal hand using the fourteenth drawn tile to form four groups melds and a pair head. There are fairly standard rules about how a piece is drawn, stolen from another player melded, the use of basic numbered tiles and honours winds and dragons, the kinds of melds, and the order of dealing and play. However there are many regional variations in the rules; in addition, the scoring system, the minimum hand necessary to win varies significantly based on the local rules being used.

All tiles are placed face down on the table and are shuffled. By convention all players should participate in shuffling using both hands moving the pieces around the table, loudly, for a lengthy period. There is no fixed rule on how to deal or how to treat tiles which flip over during shuffle, though possible solutions include turning back over the pieces at the moment they are seen, turning over all revealed pieces at intervals or doing so at the end of the shuffling and forming of the wall.

Each player then stacks a row of 18 tiles two tiles high in front of him for a total of 36 tiles. Players then push each side of their tiles together to form a square wall.

The dealer throws three dice and sums up the total. Counting counterclockwise so that the dealer is 1 or 5, 9, 13, 17, so that south is 2 or 6, 10, 14, 18, etc., a player’s quarter of the wall is chosen. Using the same total on the dice, the player then counts the stacks of tiles from right to left. Starting from the left of the stacks counted, the dealer takes four tiles to himself, and players in counterclockwise order take blocks of four tiles until all players have 12 tiles, so that the stacks decrease clockwise. Each player then takes one last tile to make a 13-tile hand. Dealing does not have to be this formal and may be done quite differently based on house rules.

Each player now sets aside any flowers or seasons they may have drawn and takes replacement pieces from the wall.

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The dealer takes the next piece from the wall, adds it to his hand. If this does not complete a legal hand, he then discards a piece throwing it into the middle of the wall with no particular order in mind.

Local play on the street in Lanzhou

Each player takes a turn picking up a tile from the wall and then discarding a tile by throwing it into the centre and, if desired, announcing out loud what the piece is. Play continues this way until one player has a legal hand. At this point a player will call out mahjong and reveal their hand. There are four different ways that this order of play can be interrupted which is mentioned below.

During play, the number of tiles maintained by each player should always be thirteen tiles meaning in each turn a tile must be picked up and another discarded. Not included in the count of thirteen tiles are flowers and seasons set to the side and the fourth added piece of a kong mentioned below. If a player is seen to have more or less than thirteen tiles in their hand outside of their turn they are penalised.

Gambling is the wagering of money or something of material value as the stakes on an event with an uncertain outcome with the primary intent of winning additional money and or material goods. Typically, the outcome of the wager is evident within a short period. Gaming refers to instances in which the law permits the type of gambling. Gaming and gambling are not mutually exclusive. A gaming company offers legal gambling activities to the public and a gaming control board may regulate the gaming company, like the Nevada Gaming Control Board. However, the English-speaking world does not acknowledge this distinction often. For instance, in the UK, the regulator of gambling activities is called the Gambling Commission not the Gaming Commission. In addition, the word gaming describes activities that do not involve wagering, especially online. Gambling is also a major international commercial activity, with the legal gambling market totaling an estimated $335 billion in 2009. Under United States federal law, gambling is legal in the country and states are free to regulate or prohibit the practice. Gambling has been legal in Nevada since 1931, forming the backbone of the economy of the state. The city of Las Vegas is perhaps the best known gambling destination in the world. In 1976, gambling became legal in Atlantic City, New Jersey and in 1990, under state law, gambling became permissible in Tunica, Mississippi; both of those cities have developed extensive casino and resort areas since then. Since a favorable United State Supreme Court decision in 1987, many American Indian tribes have built their own casinos on tribal lands as a way to provide revenue for the tribe. Because the tribes are sovereign nations, they are often exempt from state laws that restrict gambling and are instead regulated under federal law.

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When the Stakes Turn Toxic


Anyone who’s bought a lottery ticket or played bingo has gambled. Gambling is any game of chance in which money changes hands. It’s common in most cultures around the world. Many people enjoy gambling as recreation without causing harm to themselves or others. Yet some people can’t control their impulse to gamble, even when it takes a terrible toll on their lives.

For these gamblers and their families, researchers have been making progress in several areas. Scientists are learning why people have problems with gambling: how common it is, what goes on inside the gambler’s brain, which is at risk and what kinds of treatment can help.

Problem gambling is defined by some researchers as gambling that causes harm to the gambler or someone else, in spite of a desire to stop. Between 2% and 4% of Americans struggle with this condition. Problem gambling can progress to a recognized psychiatric diagnosis called pathological gambling.

Pathological gambling may affect from 0.4% to 2% of Americans. “Pathological gambling comes with a constellation of problems that contribute to chaos,” says Dr. Donald Black of the University of Iowa. “It’s associated with worse physical health, excessive smoking, excessive drinking, not exercising, not seeing primary care doctors and worse dental care. It also fuels depression, family dysfunction, crime, bankruptcy and suicide.”

Together, pathological and problem gambling may affect up to 5% of Americans. That number may rise, though. Laws in many states are creating more options for legal gambling, and internet gambling is becoming more common.

Still, gambling is often done in family settings, condoned or encouraged by parents. And the younger you start, the more likely you are to get into trouble later on. From 3% to 8% of adolescents have a problem with gambling.

Dr. John Welte of the University of Buffalo has found that, across the lifespan, gambling problems are even more common than alcohol dependence. They are also much more common in males, in young people, and in people who live in relatively poor neighborhoods. “That’s not true of the prevalence of alcoholism,” says Welte.

“Alcoholism is much more democratic. So think about motives for gambling. People are hoping that winning will improve their lot. That makes them more vulnerable to developing a gambling problem.”

In a study of mostly African-American inner-city youth, Dr. Silvia Martins of Johns Hopkins University has found that about 15% have some form of problem gambling. Most at-risk were adolescents and young adults who began showing symptoms of depression at age 12. They were highly impulsive, although not hyperactive or aggressive. As the African-American boys developed into their teens and early adulthood, gambling appeared to be a separate risk factor for early fatherhood and criminal arrest.

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“We are following up with these inner-city kids every single year as they enter adulthood,” says Martins.

But why is gambling irresistible to some folks and not others? Using advanced imaging techniques, Dr. Alexander Neumeister of Mount Sinai School of Medicine looked at the brains of people with gambling problems and alcohol problems. He measured the number of special receptors involved in regulating impulse control and other factors.

“A key feature of addiction is impaired impulse control,” says Neumeister. “Abnormal function of the forebrain leads to reduced tolerance to waiting.” The resulting impatience may cause people to act without considering the consequences. “Our imaging clearly points toward the importance of impaired forebrain function in addiction.”

Pinpointing areas in the brain’s reward center, Neumeister’s team found that people with alcohol addiction and gambling problems show different functioning of these special receptors compared to healthy people. The differences were related to the severity of addiction. Other researchers are trying to develop drugs that could treat the affected areas.

Talk therapy can also help. Dr. Nancy Petry at the University of Connecticut Health Center works with pathological gamblers and people seeking treatment for drug use disorders. Gambling problems arise in about 10% to 20% of substance abusers. Petry compared the use of different types of talk therapy, including very brief interventions and cognitive-behavioral therapy CBT. CBT teaches people how to think differently about problems and then act on that knowledge.

“We found very brief interventions and CBT were effective in reducing gambling and gambling-related problems,” Petry says. “There was a significant improvement relative to usual care or standard forms of treatment like Gamblers Anonymous [a 12-step program].”

Anybody can have a gambling problem, and no one should feel ashamed or be afraid to seek treatment. “Pathological gambling is a medical disorder, not a sin or a vice,” says Dr. Carlos Blanco of Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute. “There is no stereotype. The main predictor of outcome is really motivation.”

In other words, what counts most is a strong drive or desire to take action. Blanco offers gamblers motivational interviewing, which helps them explore their mixed feelings about trying to quit gambling. This primes them to be ready and willing to begin CBT. Using both therapies together can be very effective.
If you have concerns about your gambling, ask for help. Your health provider can work with you to find the treatment that’s best for you.

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Blood alcohol content

Blood alcohol content

Blood alcohol content (BAC) or blood alcohol concentration is the concentration of alcohol in blood. It is usually measured as mass per volume. For example, a BAC of 0.02% means 0.2 ‰ (permille) or 0.02 grams of alcohol per 100 grams of individual’s blood, or 0.2 grams of alcohol per 1000 grams of blood. Blood alcohol concentration is measured in many different units and in many different fashions, but they are all relatively synonymous for each other. In many countries, BAC is reported as grams of alcohol per liter of blood (g/L). Because the specific gravity of blood is close to 1, the numerical value of BAC measured as mass per volume and that of BAC measured as mass per mass do not differ to any consequential degree other than the placement of the decimal point. For example, 1 g/L is equivalent to 0.94 g/kg. In the UK, BAC is reported as milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood. For example, a BAC of 0.08% is legally given as a limit of 80 mg per 100 ml. It is also reported in grams per litre, which is an equivalent measurement.

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The number of drinks consumed is a very poor measure of intoxication largely because of variation in physiology and individual alcohol tolerance. However, it is generally accepted that the consumption from sober of two standard drinks (containing a total of 20 grams) of alcohol will increase the average person’s BAC roughly 0.05% (a single standard drink consumed each hour after the first two will keep the BAC at approximately 0.05%), but there is much variation according to body weight, sex, and body fat percentage. Furthermore, neither BAC nor the number of drinks consumed are necessarily accurate indicators of the level of impairment. Tolerance to alcohol varies from one person to another, and can be affected by such factors as genetics, adaptation to chronic alcohol use, and synergistic effects of drugs.

Poker Blinds

Poker Blinds

A blind or blind bet is a forced bet placed into the pot by one or more players before the deal begins, in a way that simulates bets made during play. The most common use of blinds as a betting structure calls for two blinds: the player after the dealer blinds about half of what would be a normal bet, and the next player blinds what would be a whole bet. This two-blind structure, sometimes with antes, is the dominating structure of play for community card poker games such as Texas hold-em. Sometimes only one blind is used often informally as a “price of winning” the previous hand, and sometimes three are used this is sometimes seen in Omaha. In the case of three blinds usually one quarter, one quarter, and half a normal bet amount, the first blind goes “on the button”, that is, is paid by the dealer.

For example, in a $2–4 limit game, the first player to the dealer’s left who, if not for the blinds, would be the first to act posts a small blind of $1, and the next player in turn posts a big blind of $2. After the cards are dealt, play begins with the next player in turn third from the dealer, who must either call $2, raise, or fold. When the betting returns to the player who blinded $1, he must equal the bet facing him toward which he may count his $1, raise, or fold. If there have been no raises when action first gets to the big blind that is, the bet amount facing him is just the amount of the big blind he posted, the big blind has the ability to raise or check. This right to raise called the option occurs only once: if his raise is now called by every player, the first betting round closes as usual.

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Similarly to a missed ante, a missed blind due to the player’s temporary absence i.e. for drinks or a restroom break can be denoted by use of a special button. Upon the player’s return, they must pay the applicable blind to the pot for the next hand they will participate in. The need for this rule is eliminated in casinos that deal in absent players as described above. Also the rule is for temporary absences only; if a player leaves the table permanently, special rules govern the assigning of blinds and button see next subsection.

In some fixed-limit and spread-limit games, especially if three blinds are used, the big blind amount may be less than the normal betting minimum. Players acting after a sub-minimum blind have the right to call the blind as it is, even though it is less than the amount they would be required to bet, or they may raise the amount needed to bring the current bet up to the normal minimum, called completing the bet. For example, a limit game with a $5 minimum bet on the first round might have blinds of $1 and $2. Players acting after the blind may either call the $2, or raise to $5. After the bet is raised to $5, the next raise must be to $10 in accordance with the normal limits.


Betting Pool

Betting Pool

A betting pool, sports lottery, sweep or office pool if done at work, is a form of gambling, specifically a variant of parimutuel betting influenced by lotteries, where gamblers pay a fixed price into a pool from which taxes and a house take or vig are removed, and then make a selection on some outcome, usually related to sport. In an informal game, the vig is usually quite small or non-existent. The pool is evenly divided between those that have made the correct selection. There are no odds involved; each winner’s payoff depends simply on the number of gamblers and the number of winners. True parimutuel betting, which was historically referred to as pool betting, involves both odds calculations and variable wager amounts.

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Contestants predict the outcome of sporting events that take place at a later time. The concept was introduced in 1923 by Littlewoods Pools where it was known as totoclarification needed and based on football soccer matches. Today in England, sports lotteries are more commonly referred to as football pools. American sports lotteries often do not require contestants to purchase a lottery ticket or make an initial wager. Hockey pools are common in North America, and footy tipping in Australia.