In order to proceed with the project, I needed to provide my computer with an extensive database of jai-alai statistics and results. I needed three kinds of information:
There seemed only two sources from which to get these statistics:
I figured wrong. Nobody I spoke to ever kept more than a week's worth of data around. Local newspapers are in the business of producing newspapers, and understandably could not be bothered with yesterday's news. Of course, I could have gone through old printed copies of the paper, and retyped everything into the computer, but doing so for a year or two's worth of statistics would be too great a task to bear.
Neither of these options were tenable. The jai-alai project was dead in the water until the Internet and World Wide Web (WWW) suddenly became popular.
I hope you have enjoyed this excerpt from
Calculated Bets: Computers, Gambling, and Mathematical Modeling to
Win!, by Steven Skiena,
copublished by
Cambridge University Press
and the
Mathematical Association of America.
This is a book about a gambling system that works. It tells the story of how the author used computer simulation and mathematical modeling techniques to predict the outcome of jai-alai matches and bet on them successfully -- increasing his initial stake by over 500% in one year! His method can work for anyone: at the end of the book he tells the best way to watch jai-alai, and how to bet on it. With humor and enthusiasm, Skiena details a life-long fascination with the computer prediction of sporting events. Along the way, he discusses other gambling systems, both successful and unsuccessful, for such games as lotto, roulette, blackjack, and the stock market. Indeed, he shows how his jai-alai system functions just like a miniature stock trading system. Do you want to learn about program trading systems, the future of Internet gambling, and the real reason brokerage houses don't offer mutual funds that invest at racetracks and frontons? How mathematical models are used in political polling? The difference between correlation and causation? If you are curious about gambling and mathematics, odds are this is the book for you! |