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R. Clercx "ronald_clercx" (Oostende, BELGIUM)
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Lost Themes
Lost Themes
Price: £9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Old school gloomy atmospheric; Carpenter is still the dude, 23 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: Lost Themes (Audio CD)
Even without a movie to accompany this album, old school Carpenter fans will not be disappointed. When I pre ordered the album I feared 'Lost Themes' might be a bunch of leftovers quickly updated to make a buck, but this is certainly not the case. As such the title is somewhat misleading, because all tracks are new, but they all ooze that definite and trade mark Carpenter sound. From the first track 'Vortex' the atmosphere sucks you in to the dark and gloomy atmospheres reminiscent of Halloween, The Fog, Prince of Darkness and Escape from New York.

Yes, this is even better than the newer, more rock oriented atmospheres of his later movies starting from 'They Live'. This is old school Carpenter, lots of sequencing and arpeggio's and with pristine sound quality. If you are a Carpenter fan, have no doubts: the man is still the dude. A definitive must buy.


The Statistics of Poker: Data Mining Statistics Applied to Small Stakes No Limit Hold'em
The Statistics of Poker: Data Mining Statistics Applied to Small Stakes No Limit Hold'em
by Steve Selbrede
Edition: Paperback
Price: £19.64

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exact and firmly backed up statistical advice on the game, 10 Jan. 2014
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I've read a whole bunch of poker books and gathered a small library by now. Problem is many authors promote a certain style of playing (tight aggressive for beginners being the most popular) but often without referring to exact results of whatever style they advocate. This book is in a totally different realm. First one needs to ask the question: what is a winning player over the long term, what are the main characteristics in their playing style, why are they so successful at what they do in the long run and back this up with results and decent statistics. Not only from one player (which would be one author) but from a huge field of players. The author just did that, firmly based with stats and decent interpretation of the stats. It's certainly NOT a beginners book because it does not work with hand examples, pre flop hand advice, or advice like do this in that kind of situation... NO it goes beyond that. The book starts with the most important question: what characteristics do winning players share in their play style. This is a book that stands on it's very own because it may very well be the first serious scientific attempt to explain what optimal strategy is in poker. Obviously poker is such a complex game with so many variables and dynamics one strategy will not adopt well for all situations so one needs to generalize advice and the author did that. Not the most 'exciting' book to read, not a book you want to read when you're not fully awake, but for all readers who want firmly backed up and general advice on how to play and WHY: this is your book. Recommended for intermediate and expert player alike.


""Chance, Luck and Statistics " (Dover Books on Mathematics)
""Chance, Luck and Statistics " (Dover Books on Mathematics)
by Horace C. Levinson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading for the prepared gamblers, 11 Oct. 2013
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It's a real shame this book doesn't pop up quite so often in the essential read list of gamblers.

Why not, one might wonder. Well, because the content does cover the essential principles any gambler should master in probability theory and statistics before thinking one is a 'consistent winner'. Why should any gambler have this book in his library: because probability theory and statistics are the very same 'weapons' the casino uses against the player.

Horace C. Levinson does a marvelous job covering the essentials in the 'science of chance' in a straight forward and accessible manner, transforming the gained knowledge to popular casino games as well as to lotteries, poker, bridge, sports betting and the most basic coin flipping.

Understanding the 'science of chance' will shatter the illusion it would be possible to beat a negative expectancy game such as roulette in the long run. Casino owners did discover this timeless fact more than a century ago. It also explains why casino owners are still so successful till this day, and many players lost great fortune while stubbornly trying to prove the opposite.

Reading this book is indeed a bleak prospect for 'the believers' who would rather not be confronted with reality that gambling games like roulette, slots and baccarat are simply a bad investment, always were and always will be. They can be a great source of entertainment for the usual escape from a less exciting reality, but if you expect to win money in the long run you would rather read this book first.

Apart from gambling, the implications of probability theory and statistics are also discussed from a business point of view; common pitfalls and misuse of statistics are pointed out.

In stead of spending your money on the latest -become a millionaire- gambling system, an investment in an excellent book as this would be a very wise decision.


Club Hits 2000
Club Hits 2000
Price: £11.38

4.0 out of 5 stars Fluent and funky, 31 Aug. 2006
This review is from: Club Hits 2000 (Audio CD)
Mix cd's are often an excuse to introduce obscure tracks that would disappear into oblivion without the exposure. Well, this is not that kind of the mix: it plays safe with more or less succesfull tunes, easy to the ear and directly appealing.

If you like a mellow club sound and catchy tunes, I'm sure Sanchez, 'Turn Up The Music' is well known by now. This major clubhit is teamed up with other excellent clubtreated sounds, with groovy remixes: the Jacques Lu Cont treatment of 'A Pain That I'm Used To' by Depeche Mode and old classics like 'Ride The White Horse'.

The blending and mastering is skillfully done, and the vibe remains through out. If you're searching for a funky and instant catchy mix, this is it.


The Days of Mars
The Days of Mars
Offered by 5records
Price: £14.99

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage analog revisited, 8 Mar. 2006
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This review is from: The Days of Mars (Audio CD)
Many have tried to evoke the warm analog sounds and mesmerising psychedelic compositions of the godfathers of electronic music: Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Vangelis ...
But, I remember few who are so spot on as Delia Gonzalez and Gavin Russom. To capture the sound and warm dynamics of their ancestors this duo was obliged to use real analog modular synths. This choice is immediately reflected in the warm soundscapes and pulsating hypnotising arpeggio rhytms.
Without the use of one kickdrum or one drum loop, this duo manages to produce sequential, truly hypnotising and surreal music which does not get boring or enerving, thanks to the subtle chances in the arpeggio rhytms and careful mixing.
The four compositions remind the melancholic atmosphere of vintage John Carpenter tracks mixed with the very best of Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze, long before the digital revolution.

And yes, for once you get the feeling that the original artists who pioneered in this style of music were not 'better' (as usually is the case listening to cheap copycats).
Although certainly children of the mid 70's vague of electronic music, Delia Gonzales and Gavin Russom are more than capable of bringing a worthy rebirth of the vintage electronic music.
Remarkable, capturing and simply irresistable for any music collection which adores the sound of TD, Klaus Schulze or John Carpenter.


The Yonomicon: An Enlightened Tome of Yoyo Tricks
The Yonomicon: An Enlightened Tome of Yoyo Tricks
by Mark S. McBride
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delivers exactly what it promises., 14 Oct. 2005
There are not so many books which deliver exactly to the appealing description by the publisher, but this one is a rare exception.
I've loved yoyo's since I first laid my hand on them when I was 14 or so (I'm now 35). Recently I picked my yoyo back up, and watched some clips from the Yoyo 2005 World championship.
Incredible what yoyo players are up to these days. Intimidated by the high level of new school play, and wondering how to do all those new tricks, I started searching for more information.
These days there are instructional DVD's around (I have the Cosmic Yoyo DVD), although visually more appealing than books; most of them leave out the detail, and do not go into the physics involved.
The Yonomicon book does exactly where most trick instruction guides end: it anatomically dissects each trick from the basic to the complicated, not only using graphics but also providing in very detailed instructions from the author (the little pointers which often make the difference between a good executed move and a bummer), and teaches you how to combine the parts into complicated showpieces using very clear comic style graphics. If you've never heard of tricks like 'Houdini Drop', 'Q Throw', 'Hide & Seek', 'Side Dump', '8 Ball', 'Plan 9', 'Switch Stance' and a couple of a hundred others, well you'll find them here, neatly dissected from the beginning to the advanced.
Even if you are a beginner but are interested in immediately learning the right way and increasing your skill level very quickly, this is the book for you.
Unfortunately, but we can not really blame the author for this (the book dates from 1998) the very latest increasingly popular styles (like freehand and off string play) are not featured in this book. Nor will you find information concerning the binding technique which is usually used by advanced players to bring back up very unresponsive yoyo's. If you are looking for these very latest additions to yoyoing, you might be disappointed.
So personally I'm looking forward to a next edition of the Yonomicon which keeps up with today's progress. However, I might say, if you are a beginner or even intermediate player, the information in this book will keep you busy practicing for at least months or years, before you might be thinking of learning the very latest styles. Even for these, the information in the Yonomicon is the key to succesfully knowing how to walk before you can fly (offstring and freehand play).


Beat the Casino
Beat the Casino
by Frank Barstow
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Misleading and without any serious statistical proof, 26 Sept. 2005
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This review is from: Beat the Casino (Paperback)
'Beat the casino' as a title, surely with the knowledge contained in this book, is very misleading and could proove very costly in the long run.
Although the author stresses there is always risk involved, it is a serious flaw, that NONE of the systems provided (some classics, some new ones or variations by the author) have been tested on long term results. The only thing here is opinion from the author, but mathematical nor statistical proof for long term results is to be found.
Of course, any one could come up with the results of a specific session, on which a certain system prooved succesfull. One could also be succesfull in the short term without applying any system at all, but only have plain ordinary luck (which of course doesn't last in the long run).
On one occasion the author mentions he had a system analysed with the aid of a programmer, but the calculations which prooved succesfull are missing :-)
Surely, as a retired investment broker and regular gambler (if the author is what he claims to be) it would have been easy to include long term results from any of the systems discussed (for instance use computeranalysis versus random generated numbers).
If you never heard of 'moneymanagement', 'odds' or simply do not know one thing about Blackjack, Craps or Roulette, you might find the book interesting to pick up the basics and game rules, but if you are looking for a system which would make you a consistent winner, this is simply not what you are looking for.
If anything, applying the systems and being succesfull will give you a false sense of security untill the bubble bursts.
However, if you have to choose between walking into a casino, completely unprepared, you might consider this book. The advice on Blackjack however, is simply a rerun of the classic by Thorpe, so in this case go for the original.
If you are looking for more serious books on probabilitytheory and statistics concerning general issues or gambling in specific, please check my other reviews.


Taking Chances: Winning with Probability
Taking Chances: Winning with Probability
by Dr. John Haigh
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.80

29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent introduction for the layman, 25 Sept. 2005
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I've bought quite a few books on probabilitytheory and stats lately (you can check my other reviews to verify) and I consider this book to be one of the most valuable in my growing collection.
Gambling adepts who mostly don't have a clue about the real odds, or miscalculate odds, might find this book very enlightening (or depressing depending on your preassumptions who are most likely to get smashed after reading this book).
If you are a mathphobic, you'll find the explications clear without being simplistic, and the practical value is excellent.
Adding an appendix in which all the calculations or concepts are mathematically backed up is an excellent surplus. This way, you can adopt the formula's needed to many different questions which involve getting a clear objective view on chance in a wide range of fields.
The title however, might bring false hope to the desperate ones. If anything, the author prooves beyond reasonable doubt how low the odds are exactly you could actually win big in popular gambling games such as the lottery or casino games.
In other cases, like investment, or sports betting, applying the knowledge in this book could be profitable. But, as the name 'probabilitytheory' implies: probability does not equal certainty. However, if you decide to gamble, one can better maximise his chances, what this book will teach you.
If you, like me, thought math and stats were simply not your cup of tea, have no fear. You won't be banging your head against the wall struggling with complicated formula's of which you are trying to figure out the symbols used. The author understands very well the art of explaining the complex in an approachable way which will keep you interested.
If you are a layman and would only buy one book on probabilitytheory, but can not decide which one: I can promise you from what I have read myself so far:
this is surely a very good way to start.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 5, 2008 12:08 AM BST


Get the Edge at Roulette: How to Predict Where the Ball Will Land (Scoblete Get-The-Edge)
Get the Edge at Roulette: How to Predict Where the Ball Will Land (Scoblete Get-The-Edge)
by Christopher Pawlicki
Edition: Paperback

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fair and honest advice, but can be misleading, 25 Sept. 2005
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There are many gambling books around, especially on roulette.
Often they come with very attractive titles, such as 'Predict where the ball will land'. This book is rather about how difficult, if not impossible, it is to make any serious predictions, at best well calculated guesses.
The author starts of very thorougly by dissecting classic roulette systems such as the Martingale, Labouchere (and other systems which ruined people over the years) and shows with clear logic, they simply can not work. Even if you have no prior math knowledge, the explication is clear without being simplistic. So far, so good. It will surely prevent anyone, to have a go at these classic mathematical systems again.
But, rather very misleading Pawlicki rejects one way of playing the game, by another which can be as devastating to the bankroll of the player. Biased wheels and visual ballistics are explained, but the stats provided are questionable, incomplete or simply absent (in the case of visual ballistics).
In the case of visual ballistics there isn't any proove provided what so ever, only presumptions which are never a good thing. Pawlicki claims there are people who can apply visual ballistics (predicting where the ball will land depending on mental timing), but a serious statistical test to examine if a testsubject would hold up on a larger amount of trials is not provided. Or would we see it was also only good luck or belief rather than ability?
In the case of biased wheels, the calculation of standard deviation is explained (which is interesting if you never heard of it), but another very important test is left out: the Chi Square Test (casino's monitoring software actually use both in combination).
Why? Because a high standard deviation doesn't necessarily mean there is bias: it could only be a statistical fluctuation which is mathematically expected all along in a game such as roulette. In this case the book can be suggestively misleading by offering incomplete advice: outcomes with low probability are still far away from bias, and in any case it would take far larger amounts of trials to differentiate with enough statistical significance between randomness and bias. Far more, than any occasional player would probably go through.
Never the less, if you want to catch up on analysis of the game on roulette (meaning probabilitytheory and stats come into place), this is a better starting point than many other books out there. I would have given it four or five stars if Pawlicki would have expanded the book, with serious statistical tests of other so called 'advantage' systems which are discussed.
Or would the author only find he replaced one conclusion (simple mathematical systems can not work in the long run), with another belief (I can visually predict where the ball will land or high standard deviation equals bias).
I doubt strongly this book will make you a consistent winner in the long run. Stop playing all together would probably be the most wise decission.


Chance: A Guide to Gambling, Love, the Stock Market and Just About Everything Else
Chance: A Guide to Gambling, Love, the Stock Market and Just About Everything Else
by Amir D. Aczel
Edition: Hardcover

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, but shallow, 16 Aug. 2005
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Probabilitytheory: for anyone who only has basic or no skills in mathematics and / or statistics, it may introduce a shiver down your spine. But, probably you've picked up somewhere probabilitytheory could come in quite handy to get a better objective view on your chances, so you are looking for some literature.
The enormous scope of this title (Chance: A Guide To Gambling, Love, The Stock Market and Just About Everything Else) is misleading customers into thinking this book would be an all-in-one solution for just about any probabilityproblem.
Gamblers who are looking for advice into figuring out probabilityformula's to increase their chances of winning in a certain (gambling)game will be enormously disappointed, because basically the advice for all casino games mentioned in this book comes down to this: don't gamble because the odds are against you.
Stockmarket amateurs will hardly find this title interesting, because statistical concepts like Standard Deviation, regression and correlation and so, which are more than necessary for analysing the stockmarket are abscent from the equation.
Only very basic concepts in probabilitytheory are introduced, and if you already have a background in probabilitytheory, this book will at best be a very shallow review.
For the layman the author's narrative style is very appealing, and most explications are very clear, but sometimes formula's are introduced to quickly and if you don't recognise all the math symbols, a layman can only wonder how the solution was calculated.
If you are looking for a far better educational book into probabilitytheory and stats in general, I highly recommend 'The idiot's guide to statistics' instead.
If you are searching for a book that is easy consumable and mostly entertaining, this is the right choice, but this is one for the shelf after the read and you probably won't find it much use after that.
A more realistic title like 'a very short introduction into probablitytheory' would have helped the rating.


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