ScreenHunter_32 Feb. 14 20.51I was reading a good post about a hot craps tables over at the Tunica Travel blog the other day. Should you join in on a hot table?  (click the link to read)

When you are gaming, there are a couple bias’s you should watch out for. The one they are talking about on the Tunica blog is the “Hot hand Fallacy” .   It is the belief that a person with a “hot hand” will continue to experience success. For example, your favorite basketball play may make serveral 3 pointers in a row so the feeling is you should get him the ball.  A number of studies don’t back this up. When it comes to dice which are even less prone to things like having a good day, you are smarter to ignore it.

The reverse fallacy is the “gambler’s Fallacy” (hitting home yet? 🙂  ) In this case, you assume a winner just can’t continue wining so you bet against him. It’s also known as the Monte Carlo Fallacy and the “fallacy of the maturity of chances”.  Where did it come from?  According to Wikipedia:

in the summer of 1913, when the ball fell in black 26 times in a row, an extremely uncommon occurrence (but not more nor less common than any of the other 67,108,863 sequences of 26 red or black, neglecting the 0 slot on the wheel), and gamblers lost millions of francs betting against black after the black streak happened. Gamblers reasoned incorrectly that the streak was causing an “imbalance” in the randomness of the wheel, and that it had to be followed by a long streak of red.

What you need to remember is the dice and the slot machine have no memory. Your odds of winning are exactly the same as the previous rolls regardless of what happened before.