More on using bots in online poker games:

For what it’s worth, game theory suggests that if it’s likely that the other players are cheating, then the only winning strategy is to cheat. But the only ethical strategy is not to play at all. But I find this whole concept fascinating. One of the developers of a commercial poker bot likens his efforts to civil disobedience.

That being said, I’ve spent the morning researching what it would take to do this.

First, the online casinos have detection methods, both overt and subtle, for detecting the main commercial packages. There are ways around those detection methods, but, like any measure/counter-measure situation, it’s not static. Each side is working to gain the upper hand, and at any given moment the advantage can shift.

Second, even if one is using one of the commercial packages, and especially if someone programs their own bot, one would have to have the skills of both a programmer AND a decent-to-good poker player in order to come up with a winning strategery. The author of the article I linked to below estimates that it can take as many as 2500 hours of programming to come up with a set of rules that will win over time AND code that into a bot. And even then, one can only win, say, $5 per table per hour on average. Sure, if it runs 24/7 that’s $840 per week per table… but one of the ways to detect bots is to watch players who play 24/7, so the longer it goes on the more risk of having an account siezed and any winnings taken.

So, like most things, there’s actually a lot of effort that would potentially be required to cheat and win at online poker. And it would take a large outlay of time and equipment and personnel to make big money. And, the more people you have involved, the more chances of getting caught or getting turned in.

Bummer. For a moment there I thought I’d found The American Dream (make buckets of money for free).