We at Wizard Slots are always interested in all aspects of the history of gambling as it lets us know more about the people we are providing our games to! just like any games there has been people attempting to cheat blackjack since its creation whether it be through classic card counting, pure charm or even through intricate machines and technology specially made to help the user cheat. However, in this article we will cover the people who helped popularise and perfect the methods of card counting in blackjack and other card games!
Keith Taft may very well be the pioneer of micro computing and peer to peer networking thanks to his work in creating the world’s first blackjack computer which could be easily hidden. This fantastic piece of kit was able to compute perfect blackjack strategies, capture video and even share information to the other pieces of kit his team members were wearing. After perfecting his technology, he then created a card counting team with ken Uston another card counter who will appear later on this list.
This team, all kitted out with the devices, had an 80%-win rate and pulled in a whopping $100,000 in only five weeks. However, they were soon caught by the FBI and had all of their equipment confiscated. They were able to avoid sentencing however as the FBI deemed the devices as strategy-aiding and not cheating. Taft’s usage of these devices has surely changed the face of gambling and strategies for gambling in the years since.
If you’ve heard of card counting you will have definitely heard of Ken Uston. Known as a man who did not hide the fact he was a genius at card counting he appeared on multiple television shows talking about his exploits and talking about how people could do it themselves. This caused him to become a well-known public figure outside gambling and caused casinos to take measures to avoid skilled players having an advantage.
Due to his high profile in and out of gambling circles Ken Uston was frequently banned from casinos which pushed him to create a number of disguises to fool the casino staff into thinking he was someone else. Due to the grey legality of card counting Ken Uston was known for taking large casinos to court battling with them and causing large reform in the casino industry.
Stanford Wong is an author responsible for such books as basic blackjack and is the creator of a large number of card counting systems. His own technique called Wonging proved to be a very easy way of helping people gain a lot of money by improving on the low stakes gaming technique by instructing people to watch tables and only enter into the game when you have counted the cards long enough to know that you will receive a winning hand. However, using this way of counting cards can attract more attention especially when you are dipping in and out of blackjack tables and only winning when you jump in. with many books on how to play blackjack at all levels many believe that Stanford Wong is responsible for the influx of blackjack players around today
Entering blackjack at a young age Grosjean was always going to make waves in the blackjack world. Started playing professionally in college he was a genius at calculating numbers and creating strategies however it wasn’t until an amateur dealer accidentally showed his hole card that Grosjean was inspired to research further into using maths to estimate and predict what cards would be next, what the dealers hole card is and what the probability of winning is. He is also known for his court cases against major casinos. These involve his detainment for 5 days by the Caesar palace security, assault from the imperial casino security guards and a defamation lawsuit against Griffin investigations which caused griffin investigations to file bankruptcy after they lost the monumental court case. He still plays in major casinos today but just like Ken Uston he employs a large number of disguises to avoid security.
Thorp is not only a famous card counter but is also known as the university maths professor who beat the dealer and the market. His bestselling book titled “Beat the Dealer” discloses his system that keeps track of cards that have previously been dealt. Essentially, he is the inventor of the system that most card counters use today. His system was actually so effective that it forced casino owners to ensure that the dealers shuffled as often as possible. Like many also on this list, he also experienced being barred from casinos after they suspected his steady wins being a result of a system. He then also wore disguises to prevent the casinos from recognising him in order to play.
Thorp’s career as a card counter was so successful that casinos in Las Vegas had to change the rules of blackjack to prevent people who had read his book from having an advantage. He is arguably the most successful cheater on this list.
These giants of blackjack have forged the game into what we see today, whether it be through their mathematic expertise or mechanical knowledge they were all able to become masters at their artform. Thanks to them we now know a lot more about blackjack and strategy than we ever did before allowing the game to become harder and helping starters at the game become better and better thanks to their educational books. If these blackjack pros have got you in the mood for blackjack be sure to check out our black jack themed online slot games!