PokerBars recent response from Pokerstars online shuffle programmers Cigital


> We have recently reviewed the card shuffle programme at pokerstars and would like ask some questions that you may not be at liberty to answer, never the less our findings are somewhat disturbing to players wishing to learn poker to a reasonable standard. The amount of flush flops per thousand hands 16% flush boards 23% Ace on flop 29% and 37% to the board.


Your math is flawed significantly. The only flops you see are the ones that people play. According to my statistics, roughly 46% of all hands fold pre-flop. That means there is no flop to see.  Let's use simple, round numbers to understand the effect. Let's say there's a card combination you expect to see one out of every ten times the deck is shuffled.  You observe 10 flops and see it happen twice. Is that happening twice as much as it should? We have no idea. It probably took 20 shuffles to produce 10 flops (since half the time there is no flop at all). So you have no idea how many times the thing you're looking for actually happened in the 20 shuffles, because only 10 of those shuffles produced a flop. It might be just as you expected: 2 instances in 20 shuffles. It might be far worse (e.g., 8 times in 20 shuffles) but you'd never know because those cards were never dealt out.

Lastly, you must have very large quantities of data before you can make arguments about significance. 10,000 hands or 100,000 hands are not significant.  I work with hundreds of millions of hands, and the data comes right from the source. This means I have not just one person's
hole cards
, but everyone's hole cards. That produces results that are statistically significant.

If you are looking for cheating, the
random number generator and shuffling algorith



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I’m sorry that you think we were looking at unseen flops that was not the case apart from the obvious, very few hands we viewed did not see a flop we are talking about cards to the board

My point is that probabilities--the theoretical likelihood that something will happen--are based on shuffles, not boards. The only time you see a board is if 2 or more players stay in. Why 2 or more players choose to stay in has as much (or more) to do with things like bets, stack size, and mood as it has to do with the cards.

My point is that if you think an ace on the board should happen X% of the time, that's X% of -shuffles-, not X% of boards. Because you don't see the cards most of the time, you don't really know what is happening, from a statistical point of view.

You might wish to find out what players are saying on this subject as the shuffle seems to be a continuing argument that does not fade away.

The fact that no amount of reasoned discussion is ever enough to dispel this myth is a good reason to -avoid- the discussion, not dive deeper in.

I firmly believe that skill--the choices a player makes in the play of the game--are the dominating factor in its outcome. Because of that, I think that people who consistently lose or who make little profit are making suboptimal decisions.

The impact of the shuffle, then, is actually smaller than the impact of skill. Given that the poker room makes the same rake regardless of who wins, why would they deal unfairly? They don't care whether individuals win or lose. It’s immaterial to them. So why would they do anything weird with the shuffle?


No regards this time no problem won’t read too much in to that

Pokerbars were trying, not to pull teeth from the sleeping giant we only wanted Cigital to shuffle up answers to random questions? but why bother diving in to what Cigital call a Myth, you have the right to defend your product along with your client... who incidentally are not the poker players they are just usefull employees. The majority owners of  are the Israeli Scheinberg family, and in 2006 and again in2008 enlisted NM Rothschild, a large reputable merchant bank in London, to float the company in an IPO, in the hopes of receiving more than $2 billion both efforts failed,or is that a shuffled up Myth.

We feel the question never will be answerable outside of Cigitals walls.

Pokerbars will stick by their recent findings and continue to pursue all unanswered questions until we are satisfied with the answers.

Lastly we would like to thank Cigital for the trackers and Trojans they sent with there response, as programmers we also check for things that dont play fair.We have added some interesting links for your consideration

Related Links:  Coding Horror  Cigita lPress Release

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