Tracking the Cards

  • N. Richard Werthamer


So far, several items of information have been pointed out that help Player make decisions. The total value of the cards in his hand and the value of Dealer’s upcard together lead to Basic Strategy. The specific composition of Player’s hand is additional information of potential use but, as seen, provides at best only a slight improvement in return.

The most important information not yet used is the values of the cards dealt in previous rounds. If these could be tracked, Player would gain insight into the composition of the remaining pack and whether it is more or less favorable to him than immediately after the shuffle. Exploiting the information contained in the cards dealt during prior rounds is the basis for so-called “card counting.”


Expected Return Decimal Number True Count Average Likelihood Counting Vector 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Griffin, Peter A., “The Theory of Blackjack", Huntington Press, 6th edition, 1999Google Scholar
  2. Vancura, Olaf, and Ken Fuchs, “Knock-Out Blackjack", Huntington Press, 1998Google Scholar
  3. Wong, Stanford, “Professional Blackjack" Pi Yee Press, 5th edition, 1994; “Blackjack Secrets”, Pi Yee Press, 1994Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of New YorkNew YorkUSA

Personalised recommendations