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Book Title: The Eudaemonic Pie|
The author of the book: Thomas A. Bass
ISBN 13: 9780595142361
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 7.83 MB
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1433 times
Reader ratings: 3.1
Date of issue: November 1st 2000
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What if a handful of physics and engineering brains decided they wanted to win in Las Vegas? If the game was roulette and the era was the 70s, the story would be just what’s recounted here. To answer the obvious question: the brains succeeded, but it took them a few years. For a decent summary of the book, see this NYTBR review from 1985.
A note of craziness I recall: In researching previous efforts to systematize gambling, they found that Salvador Dalí had developed a poker method that would exactly break even. Possibly my memory is wrong—it may not have been poker or Dalí—but someone had devised a precisely pointless approach that neither won nor lost. Details like that added to the fun of this whiz-kids-on-a-mission tale.
There's another crazy note to this story, and I don't recall whether the book reports this one: What the Eudaemonians decided to do had already been done! In the early 60s, mathematicians Edward Thorp and Claude Shannon (the latter is known to many for his work in information theory) devised what's often regarded now as the first wearable computer, which was built into a shoe and intended to aid in winning at roulette. As I don't know where the book has gotten to, I can't check the index to see whether Thorp and Shannon's work is included. (I learned of it from the March/April 2014 issue of MIT Technology Review, which contains an unofficial review of today's best-known wearable computer, Google Glass.) But a paper by Thorp reveals that a future member of the Eudaemonians had contacted him "around 1969" to discuss the Thorp-Shannon project.
Why do the same thing again, 10 or so years later? As a merely technical matter, it's not hard to imagine an answer: improved hardware.
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