03/08/2009

Don't Get Spooked Needlessly

Carl Sampson 'The Dean'

A close friend asked me this week if I thought that software programs were ruining online poker. For people who don’t use them or have no intentions of ever using them then I have believed the answer to be a resounding yes in the past. However that is a generalised statement that fails to apply to as many people as it actually DOES apply to.

Let me explain, I get to road test most software items these days and have tried more than most although I don’t stick with using many of them. I have been using another good software program recently called Poker Crusher and I advise anyone to go and try this out [Ed. note - ensure you check with your card room before using this software. It is prohibited on Full Tilt and several other online card rooms and its use may result in your account being banned]. But I think that I mentioned on this forum a few weeks back in a post (may have been an article) how a friend of mine a few years ago was seriously considering trading options using a piece of software from a company called Indexia.

The startling thing was that he knew basically nothing about options. It was only recently that I started to think about the connections with what software packages people go out and buy and how much value they actually get out of them. I steadfastly believe that millions of poker players (not just poker players but people in general) crave the shortest route possible to get to where they need to be.

Where is all this going, well I was sat watching a lobby screen this week and one particular NL100 game had no fewer than 23 people on the waiting list where the next highest queue was only three people. Obviously these people were using table finding programs. This should indicate that players who are keen enough to do this ought to be serious players and not fishes.

This aroused my interest so I hung around and decided to watch how these “serious players” actually played. I took a brief note of who was on the waiting list. Within forty five minutes, the nine players who had been at the table when I started watching had been replaced by the first nine on the list.

Two things then happened, not a single one of these nine players noticed that the fish that they had gone on there for had now gone. Plus I then witnessed some absolutely diabolical play from players who had been serious enough to take the time to look for fish and beatable games. I think that the lesson here is clear, its only half the battle finding a potentially exploitable game... It isn’t much use if you cant exploit it and you are no better than the fish that you are hunting.

There is also another lesson to be learned here as well and this is that you shouldn’t assume that just because a player uses tracking software or any other piece of software that they are a winning player.

If I had twenty quid in my pocket for every player who uses some kind of software simply because it looks good or they still have enough technical holes in their game that you could drive a bus through them then I may just be as rich as Fred Done. Coming onto a forum quoting poker tracker terminology is not evidence of expertise.

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