The next time you stagger home from the pub a little worse for wear and you receive ‘that look’ from your nearest and dearest, if all else fails, you could try explaining that you were giving yourself a valuable lesson in probability theory.
I’ve recently been caught up in a new book called ‘The Drunkards Walk’ which explores the concept of randomness and how it impacts us in everyday life. The phrase ‘a drunkard’s walk’ was coined by a certain Albert Einstein to explain how in many things in life from the movements of tiny molecules to weather patterns are as predictable as the individual steps of a drunk person on their way home from the pub.
What interested me most of course is how randomness affects us all from a betting perspective and how as humans we regularly make the wrong calculations or assumptions based on our poor understanding of it.
A lot of it applies to betting and the world of tipsters and systems so let me explain with some key concepts.
The Gamblers Fallacy
The gamblers fallacy is one such term explained by the book that is relevant to betting (one of many), which most of us at one point will have fallen victim to. Consider if I tossed a coin 100 times and picked heads only 44 times out of 100. Our natural thinking is to assume that there is likely to be more tails than heads in the next 100 to catch up.
Right? …. Well wrong actually as this is the fallacy in action as the coin will not develop a bias towards tails to catch up. The coin itself doesn’t have a clue that it’s flipped more tails than heads – it’s a coin after all! On the 101st throw it will still remain a 50/50 chance it will be either tails or heads.
While that may make sense to most of us when we observe the simply coin flipping analogy, unwittingly we sometimes unconsciously fall foul to this mistake on a regular basis when we consider being in or out of form. A run of good form doesn’t mean a period of bad form is due and vice versa.
Over the fullness of time and stats (perhaps 10,000 throws) you will get closer to the 50/50 exact outcome but over short samples – randomness rules!
Expert or Just Plain Lucky?
I also found the book explained another term applicable to the betting and tipster world called the ‘hot-hand fallacy’. This theory basically states that if enough people try their hand at predicting something, someone by chance will be extremely successful.
The example the book uses is the American pundit who correctly predicted turns in the stock market in 18 out of 19 years. An outstanding record that beat many ‘experts’ hands down!
What was his secret you may ask?
Well nothing more than basing his predictions on what team won the US Superbowl that year…or in other words, pure luck! What this means now that the Green Bay Packers just won this year’s – who knows!
Perhaps this is why we see some tipsters or systems have an amazing burst of form, which they are then never able to maintain long-term. They simply got lucky at the start and were no more a betting expert than I am on the intricacies of cross stitch knitting.
How Do We Avoid These Traps?
How therefore do we avoid getting caught up following a system or tipster that has simply got lucky like the ‘Superbowl pundit’ above?
Well the answer is fairly boring in that it’s often nothing more than….
- – Observing a large number of bets.
- – Observing performance over time.
- – Professional statistical analysis.
- – Expert judgement.
All these things combined can help protect you as much as possible from falling prey to lucky tipsters or systems. It can take time and effort though to apply all of this, which is where we come in at the Smart Betting Club.
We only recommend services that have
- – Proven themselves over many hundreds if not thousands of bets.
- – Proven themselves over at least a 12 month period (with very rare exceptions).
- – Proven themselves over different conditions (especially relevant for horse racing tipsters).
- – Handled losing and winning runs in a professional manner.
- – Undergone our full statistical analysis of performance.
- – Had all aspects of their service thoroughly reviewed.
- – Offer real value for money.
Those services that tick the right boxes for all these questions and more help to make up our Tipster Hall of Fame, which is currently 16 services strong. We believe therefore by following them, they offer you the best opportunity to make money betting.
Gain access to our Hall of Fame instantly by taking up a Smart Betting Club membership today.