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    A Guide to Playing Blackjack Live Online
    Thursday, July 31, 2008

    If you have always been looking for the feel of live blackjack games in online casinos, you would be pleased to know that there are now blackjack live online games that are offered by these virtual casinos. Before playing these games though, you need to equip yourself with the skills and strategies you need to beat your dealer. You also need to place limits to your game so you will maximize your winnings while minimizing potential losses. [...MORE]

    A Beginner's Glossary of Blackjack Terms
    Thursday, July 31, 2008

    Every beginner needs to learn the lingo used in blackjack. Though players will eventually learn the terms used in the game, a short list of these terms will be helpful. Beginners will learn these terms as they learn more about the game. [...MORE]

    Comprehending the Problem of Gambling Addiction
    Thursday, July 31, 2008

    Denial is the first stage that many people experience when they are on their way to gambling addiction. Although the treatment is kind of hard but gambling addiction can really be cured as well as prevented. [...MORE]

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Blackjack in History

The card game specifically called Blackjack is an invention of American gambling houses in the 1900s that quickly took root and gained popularity. Its origin is traced to several other card games but its nearest source was Vingt-et-un (Twenty-one), from France.

Vingt-et-un was a popular card game played in the casinos of France since 1700. To win, a player also had to have cards that totalled 21. The manner of playing was different from what came to be known as today's Blackjack, though.

Vingt-et-un was brought to American gambling houses in the 1900s, first appearing in Indiana. To make it more popular with players, the gambling houses offered to pay out a bonus of 10 to 1 when a player got a black Jack (either Aces or Spades) and the Ace of Spades as the first two cards. This created the name of the card game, Blackjack.

Today the name is retained even if a natural Blackjack now means any Jack plus any Ace and a win could be any Ace plus any card with a value of ten.

Blackjack rapidly became a popular card game from its American inception, and the special Blackjack table was created. Even after gambling was outlawed in the US, Blackjack persisted underground.

When gambling was legalized in Nevada in 1931, Blackjack became the third most popular game in the casinos of Las Vegas. It rose quickly to second place in 1948.

The study of Blackjack in terms of statistics and mathematical theory was first done by Roger Baldwin in 1956. He tried to show how to reduce the casino advantage in the card game in his paper, The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack.

In 1962, Prof. Edward O. Thorp published the book, Beat the Dealer, showing the Blackjack card counting system. This alarmed casinos so much that they changed the rules of the card game for a time. It was only after they had proven that it was almost impossible for regular players to learn Thorp's system that the casinos reverted to the original rules of Blackjack.

Julian Braun, a former IBM employee, used his computer genius to further advance strategy and card counting techniques in Blackjack. He contributed to the second edition of Beat the Dealer.

In the Seventies, Ken Uston, a mathematical genius from Yale and Harvard, beat casinos around the world for years through card counting. He later paired up with electronics engineer Keith Taft. Together, they won even more from casinos using a hidden computer device. They were eventually banned but fought and won a court case to allow card counters to play legally in casinos.

Stanford Wong is another Blackjack personality of this era. He was among the first to win over the early Continuous Shuffle Machines used by casinos. The card counting term "wonging" was derived from his name.

Finally, in the Nineties, a team of students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology formed the MIT Blackjack Club that beat casinos big time without the use of any devices.

Today, Blackjack's popularity continues to soar not only in brick and mortar casinos but even online. This proves that the game will endure even with further technological advances.

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