Poker players looking for a way to tip the odds in their favor, resort to a variety of techniques, gadgets and programs. While many of these methods turn out to be bogus, or too complicated to understand, the development of poker odds calculators have proven helpful to serious poker players.
Poker odds calculators come in two basic forms: software programs that you can purchase or download from a producer's website to your home computer; and pocket calculators that allow you to take the odds calculator with you wherever you go, except the casino floor, of course. Either type of poker odds calculator presents the poker player with the statistical odds and risks of betting on a particular hand based on how many players are at the table, the point of play in the game, and the existing cards already dealt.
The poker odds calculators are created by a complex set of algorithms, which compute the chances of winning based on past computations - the odds that this particular combination of cards will come up at a particular point in a game. While this information may seem to be too expansive to ever be able to commit to memory, there are some very basic odds that can be memorized by rote. Most successful poker players have educated themselves on the basic theories of odds so they can make snap decisions based upon those statistics regarding the chances of hitting a hand, as quickly as the cards are dealt.
Poker has a long history, and it has recently been experiencing a resurgence of interest because of the high-stakes poker games hosted in famed gaming casinos. The World Poker Tour began televising Texas Hold 'em tournaments in 2003 and this has further popularized the game.
Other popular poker games include: draw; five-card stud; seven-card stud; Omaha; and Manila. While the original card game may have begun hundreds of years ago in Europe or Persia, conventional wisdom contends that the modern game of poker originated on the riverboats that ferried the gentry and the much-maligned "professional card player" up and down the Mississippi River during the early 1800s. As the westward expansion opened up the new frontier, the game of poker became a popular pastime to ward off the isolation and loneliness of men separated from their families, and without the diversions of the cultured east.
Today, the odds of being dealt a winning hand are no better than the chances during the Wild West times. Luckily, savvy poker players can now avail themselves of poker odds calculators that can at least more precisely compute the stats in order for you to know the chances of getting that winning hand-and winning the pot.
Although you may not be allowed to bring a poker odds calculator with you to to the table at a tournament, the use of one in more informal settings can be very beneficial. Playing games on the computer with a poker odds calculator can provide you with the experience to perform approximate calculations on your own.