Excelpunks Casino Maths Course

Ever wondered how casinos determine the payouts for games?  Ever wondered how casino games are created?  Are you working in a casino and are wondering how the casino decides when a player is winning too much?
Learn all this and more at Excelpunks’ Casino Maths and Probability course!

Gain a deeper understanding of 4 of the most popular casino games – Roulette, Sic-Bo, Poker and Baccarat!

  1. Combinations and Permutations – learn how games are created and how payouts are determined
  2. Probability – learn how probability affects the way games are developed and how win/loss thresholds are derived
  3. Payment – how probability translates into expectation and determining payments for wagers
  4. Standard deviation – determine the likelihood of a suspicious event
  5. Expected Value and Standard Deviation – learn how to calculate the expected win/loss of casino games and how to determine the thresholds of win/loss results

Contact us at excelpunks@gmail.com for details!


Video gaming and life

In the past months, I have had ample time to sample some of the many forms of video games.

Most games feature some form of simulation of real life, from racing to squad combat. AND for some of us, we spend way too much time in these environments.

The real reason, which we may not realise at first, is the sense of accomplishment it provides. That extra level up, that unique weapon or that opponent defeated; video games offer a sense of gratification for effort expended.

So great is this feeling that we look forward to the end of our work days so we can get back to gaming.

Video games have a lot to teach us in the corporate world, in terms of how we look at work, our ways of recognising and rewarding effort and even the structures of our corporate environment.

Video games always contain inherent traits, much of which can be applied to the real world:

  1. Measurable and surmountable challenges

All quest-type video games present players with tasks.  An example would be to collect a certain amount of items.  What if the game told players to collect items, but did not specify the quantity?  Sounds unlikely?  All too likely in the real world!

Create an environment where objectives are clear, have tangible rewards and are measurable. Staff know when the goals you have set are attainable and they will strive for them.
Remember that only things that get measured, get done.
If one gives unclear, ambiguous or unattainable goals, everyone knows that you do not reward or promote on any other basis than your own opinion.  This is simply based on the fact that there is no way to tell if an objective has been completed.

That, my friend, is a dictatorship or worse, idiocy.

2. Tangible and effective rewards (be it a substantial improvement in gaming performance or even just aesthetics)

When quests do get completed, gamers are rewarded with a new item or a power-up.  This can be extremely incentivizing as it not only marks achievement, but enables players to achieve higher goals.

If you are thinking that the reward system in games are instantaneous and thus inapplicable, you’d be wrong.  Players are known to perform repetitive tasks or ‘grind’ for days to accomplish a goal.  All because they know that there is a point to it.

Too often, that is not the case in many working environments.  Not because there is a shortage of repetitive tasks, but that there is a sore lack of purpose.


Reward staff in a substantial way.  The key here is to maintain a sustainable reward system that keeps people going for the goal.

Some industries have achieved this by creating a multi-layered hierarchy of senior, assistant, deputy and vice positions. While this does create a sense of achievement, it can hamper the operations of your organization because you have just created a tall reporting structure -which is not dynamic and is ill-suited to responding to change.

An alternative would be to use lateral forms of rewards such as time-off, incentive trips or even nominal pay raises.


Reward staff in a way that motivates them to do better.  A good way is to provide special developmental programs or even higher level duties.  There is nothing that says ‘trust’ more than the opportunity to do important work.

It is important that you don’t use this as a way to get subordinates to do YOUR work.  People can smell a lazy-ass boss who is passing off work that he doesn’t want to do.  Don’t be that guy.

3. Fair treatment

The controlled environment of a game world lets regular players know when someone is cheating.  Tell-tale signs like an impossible amount of level ups is a sure sign of cheating and for the most part, the gaming community and administrators lay the smack down pretty efficiently.

Unfortunately, this does not apply to real life and it is common to see the unscrupulous gain the upper hand in a corporate environment.

Fair treatment is important as it motivates your best guys to continue giving their best as they know there is a point to it all.

If too many of the clowns get rewarded, the rest will know that the game is rigged and will stop trying or worse.  This creates a toxic environment of back-biting, politics and misery.  Don’t do that!

4. In Closing…

Promote and reward only the exemplars in your organization.  Remember that people are watching who you promote and will emulate their behavior.

Paying attention to these factors can make the difference between a team of highly motivated professionals and a set of feet-draggers that would like nothing better than to see the organization fail.

Isn’t it time we apply these principles to how we work?




Casino Gaming: Theoretical Win, Expected Value and Standard Deviation

Theoretical win and the standard deviations of expected value have been widely covered in numerous articles.  Unfortunately for me, the discussion on the topic has seldom been comprehensive enough to be understood by the layperson (meaning me).

This post attempts to explain the issue in the simplest possible way.

Why is this important?

Theoretical win is derived from the probabilities built into any casino game.  As all casino games are designed (in theory) to guarantee a return to the casino, the theoretical win (winnings for the player) is always negative while the expected value, also known as expectation (winnings for the casino) is always positive.

However, like with all probabilities, an element of randomness exists.  The standard deviation of theoretical win thus provides a threshold for casino managers to decide if play has passed the limit where it becomes suspect.

Theoretical Win and Expected Value

The average of results is determined by the theoretical win formula.  Hence, 50% of all results will achieve this result.

For example:

A split wager on single-zero roulette pays 17:1.

The probability of winning a split bet is 2/37 (2 numbers wagered on from a total of 37 numbers)

The probability of losing the bet is 37-2 / 37 = 35/37 (for all the other numbers not wagered on)

The theoretical win formula is:

(Probability of winning x payout in terms of units of wager) – (Probability of losing x wager)

(2/37 x 17) – (35/37 x 1) = -0.02703

This means that 50% of all play on split wagers in single-zero roulette will (in the long-term) achieve a loss of $0.02703 per dollar wagered by the player.

Standard Deviation

The majority of results will fall within 3 standard deviations from the average.


(Source: http://schools-wikipedia.org/)

In order to obtain the standard deviation, we turn to the binomial distribution, which is a distribution where only 1 of 2 outcomes is possible.  In our case, the outcomes being a win or a loss.

The formula for a binomial standard deviation is:

Square Root (number of games x probability of winning x probability of losing) x average wager x (unit of wager + payout in terms of units of wager)

Using our current split wager example, with an average wager of $2 over 3 games, the formula would be as follows:

Square Root(3 x 2/37 x 35/37) x $2 x (1+17)

=Square Root(3 x 2/37 x 35/37) x $2 x 18

= 0.391659 x $2 x 18

= $14.09972 (standard deviation of theoretical win)

The Result

To find out if the win of a player is improbable, we use the Z-table and the following formula:

Win – Average Win (Theoretical Win)

Standard Deviation

Our example will yield the following result should the player have won $15.  The player played 3 games with an average wager of $2, so the total wager would be $6.

15 – (-0.02703 x $6)



The result is 1.075352, meaning that the result of the player’s gaming is 1.075352 standard deviations from the average.  This means that the player’s gaming results are within the top 15% of all results.  Cause for some concern.

There you have it.  Good luck!




3 Things I Learnt From Programming

Programming is essentially an exercise in concentration.
After several months learning this from the ground-up, I have come to 3 conclusions.
  1. The best solutions to problems are always simple and elegant.
  2. Attack problems with a clear mind. You can solve a problem in 5 minutes well rested, while 10 hours with a tired mind will yield nothing.
  3. Take a step back when you come to a road block. The solution you need requires you to take a different angle.

And that’s it.

Checking in…

Hi everyone,

I apologize for not posting much over the past few months as I have been acquiring new skills.

I am now proud to announce that Excelpunks will be expanding its scope to include the creation of stand-alone .exe programs.

Minimum system requirements are a computer that runs on Windows Vista or higher.

If there is some routine data processing that you need done on a regular basis or if you are looking at acquiring a new reporting or database handling system – we’ve got you covered.






Integrated Invoicing, Inventory and Accounting System


Looking into automating your existing pen and paper invoicing and inventory system?  Interested in integrating inventory tracking, accounting and invoicing into a single system?

Excelpunks is pleased to present its integrated invoice, inventory and accounting system!


Invoice Main1

  • Create new invoices easily
  • Create customer profiles easily so you can track who’s your best client – fill in as much or as little information as you need
  • Easy to navigate invoicing system lets you modify and view all existing invoices.
  • Print your invoices easily



  • Account for all your revenue and expenses with a single invoicing system
  • Summary reports let you know your staff, client and sales performance by time-period



  • Track your incoming and outgoing inventory
  • Invoices automatically update your inventory stock


  • Stand-alone system is a breeze to install
  • Customization available on request
  • Excel connectivity allows you to import all your existing data, making system transition easy

Get in touch with us for details at excelpunks@gmail.com

APPRAISE 2.0 – The 5 Minute Staff Appraisal System!

Download: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B1GOdFh_T_QgU2hPbTdsWFFTRFU&usp=sharing

Are your regular staff appraisals a pain in the ASS?  Wished you could be spending more time DEVELOPING your staff instead of TYPING about it?  Need an easy way to generate all those forms in 5 MINUTES FLAT?

Excelpunks’ APPRAISE Staff Appraisal System does just that!  Get all the paperwork done in a flash and spend more time LISTENING and COMMUNICATING with your team!

Simple Interface

Appraise - Main Control

  • Simple plug and play interface allows you to start using the system in a flash!
  • Automatic dropdown options take care of all the essentials!  Why type EVERYTHING out when you need just a mouse click?
  • No learning curve! (almost!)

Easy data migration

Appraise - Staff List

  • Supports imports from Excel so you can load large amounts of data without manual typing!

Built-In Ready-Made Appraisal Forms

Appraise - Appraisal Form

  • Automatic listings make sure EVERYTHING is spelt correctly and all the details match PERFECTLY!
  • Just select a name and enter a numerical rating – the system does the rest!
  • Interface supports printing so you can get those form signed!
  • Generate a formatted, READY FOR PRINTING staff appraisal report by simply selecting a name!


  • Customize your OWN rating system!
  • Additional customization available upon request!

Get in touch with us at excelpunks@gmail.com for details!

"Be an Excel Star!"

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