Luck, Logic, and White Lies : The Mathematics of Games book cover
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2nd Edition

Luck, Logic, and White Lies
The Mathematics of Games




  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after April 28, 2021
ISBN 9780367548414
April 28, 2021 Forthcoming by A K Peters/CRC Press
560 Pages 80 B/W Illustrations

 
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Book Description

345034 Bewersdorff BCC PE reviewed 11/5/20

Praise for the First Edition

"Luck, Logic, and White Lies teaches readers of all backgrounds about the insight mathematical knowledge can bring and is highly recommended reading among avid game players, both to better understand the game itself and to improve one’s skills."

Midwest Book Review

"The best book I've found for someone new to game math is Luck, Logic and White Lies by Jörg Bewersdorff. It introduces the reader to a vast mathematical literature, and does so in an enormously clear manner. . ."

– Alfred Wallace, Musings, Ramblings, and Things Left Unsaid

"The aim is to introduce the mathematics that will allow analysis of the problem or game. This is done in gentle stages, from chapter to chapter, so as to reach as broad an audience as possible . . . Anyone who likes games and has a taste for analytical thinking will enjoy this book."

– Peter Fillmore, CMS Notes

Luck, Logic, and White Lies: The Mathematics of Games, Second Edition considers a specific problem—generally a game or game fragment and introduces the related mathematical methods. It contains a section on the historical development of the theories of games of chance, and combinatorial and strategic games.

This new edition features new and much refreshed chapters, including an all-new Part IV on the problem of how to measure skill in games. Readers are also introduced to new references and techniques developed since the previous edition.

Features

  • Provides a uniquely historical perspective on the mathematical underpinnings of a comprehensive list of games
  • Suitable for a broad audience of differing mathematical levels. Anyone with a passion for games, game theory, and mathematics will enjoy this book, whether they be students, academics, or game enthusiasts
  • Covers a wide selection of topics at a level that can be appreciated on a historical, recreational, and mathematical level.

 

Jörg Bewersdorff (1958) studied mathematics from 1975 to 1982 at the University of Bonn and earned his PhD in 1985. In the same year, he started his career as game developer and mathematician. He served as the general manager of the subsidiaries of Gauselmann AG for more than two decades where he developed electronic gaming machines, automatic payment machines, and coin-operated Internet terminals.

Dr. Bewersdorff has authored several books on Galois theory (translated in English and Korean), mathematical statistics, and object-oriented programming with JavaScript.

Table of Contents

I. Games of Chance. 1. Dice and Probability. 2. Waiting for a Double. 3. Tips on Playing the Lottery: More Equal Than Equal? 4. A Fair Division: But How? 5. The Red and the Black: The Law of Large Numbers. 6. Asymmetric Dice: Are They Worth Anything? 7. Probability and Geometry. 8. Chance and Mathematical Certainty: Are They Reconcilable? 9. In Quest of the Equiprobable. 10. Winning the Game: Probability and Value. 11. Which Die Is Best? 12. A Die Is Tested. 13. The Normal Distribution: A Race to the Finish! 14. And Not Only at Roulette: The Poisson Distribution. 15. When Formulas Become Too Complex: The Monte Carlo Method. 16. Markov Chains and the Game Monopoly. 17 Blackjack: A Las Vegas Fairy Tale. II. Combinatorial Games. 18. Which Move Is Best? 19. Chances of Winning and Symmetry. 20. A Game for Three. 21. Nim: The Easy Winner! 22. Lasker Nim: Winning Along a Secret Path. 23. Black-and-White Nim: To Each His (or Her) Own. 24. A Game with Dominoes: Have We Run Out of Space Yet? 25. Go: A Classical Game with a Modern Theory. 26. Misere Games: Loser Wins! 27. The Computer as Game Partner. 28. Can Winning Prospects Always Be Determined? 29. Games and Complexity: When Calculations Take Too Long. 30. A Good Memory and Luck: And Nothing Else? 31. Backgammon: To Double or Not to Double? 32. Mastermind: Playing It Safe. III. Strategic Games. 33. Rock–Paper–Scissors: The Enemy's Unknown Plan. 34. Minimax Versus Psychology: Even in Poker? 35. Bluffing in Poker: Can It Be Done Without Psychology? 36. Symmetric Games: Disadvantages Are Avoidable, but How? 37. Minimax and Linear Optimization: As Simple as Can Be. 38. Play It Again, Sam: Does  Experience Make Us Wiser? 39. Le Her: Should I Exchange? 40. Deciding at Random: But How? 41. Optimal Play: Planning Efficiently. 42. Baccarat: Draw from a Five? 43. Three-Person Poker: Is It a Matter of Trust?  44 QUAAK! Child's Play? 45 Mastermind: Color Codes and Minimax. 46. A Car, Two Goats–and a Quizmaster. IV. Epilogue: Chance, Skill, and Symmetry. 47. A Player's Inuence and Its Limits. 48. Games of Chance and Games of Skill. 49. In Quest of a Measure. 50. Measuring the Proportion of Skill. 51. Poker: The Hotly Debated Issue.

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Author(s)

Biography

Jörg Bewersdorff (1958) studied mathematics from 1975 to 1982 at the University of Bonn and earned his PhD in 1985. In the same year, he started his career as game developer and mathematician. He served as the general manager at the subsidiaries of the Gauslmann AG for more than two decades where he developed electronic gaming machines, automatic payment machines and coin operated internet terminals.

Jörg Bewersdorff has authored several books on Galois theory (translated in English and Korean), mathematical statistics and object-orientated programming with JavaScript.

Reviews

Praise for the First Edition

"Luck, Logic, and White Lies teaches readers of all backgrounds about the insight mathematical knowledge can bring and is highly recommended reading among avid game players, both to better understand the game itself and to improve one's skills."

Midwest Book Review

"The best book I've found for someone new to game math is Luck, Logic and White Lies by Jörg Bewersdorff. It introduces the reader to a vast mathematical literature, and does so in an enormously clear manner. . ."

– Alfred Wallace, Musings, Ramblings, and Things Left Unsaid

"The aim is to introduce the mathematics that will allow analysis of the problem or game. This is done in gentle stages, from chapter to chapter, so as to reach as broad an audience as possible [. . .] Anyone who likes games and has a taste for analytical thinking will enjoy this book."

– Peter Fillmore, CMS Notes