What Does 1×2 Mean in Betting?

When you walk into a casino, the very first thing that may pop up in your head is the bright lights, the loud noises and the big jackpots that await you. While there’s no denying that the gambling universe is a captivating one, the allure of betting is far more subtle and far-reaching.

In plain English, betting is the practice of placing bets or wagers on the outcome of certain events or games. Simply put, you may bet on the outcome of a horse race or a football game, but you may also bet on which celebrity will walk the red carpet next or on the next big economic news story to come out of the White House. In all respects, betting is a form of entertainment, but it is also a way of life that allows you to divine fortune and change outcomes in a matter of seconds.

As a matter of history, the practice of betting can be traced back to ancient times and, in fact, the very first recorded instance of someone placing a wager occurred during the reign of King Darius I of Persia (compared to our modern notion of wagering). In this case, Darius bet with his friends that a certain eunuch would be able to recite a certain poem in front of the king’s beautiful wife, Aspasia.

This practice soon made its way into the Bible where the Israelites are referred to as ‘wagering peoples’ and, for a brief period of time, Jesus even indulged in some high-stakes gambling in the form of a ‘golden rule’ bet with his disciples.

Though prohibited by Jewish law, gambling was highly regarded among the Romans. Not only did they see it as a way of life that promoted sportsmanship, but the Romans had also developed a system of government-sponsored lotteries and raffles that helped fund public works projects and military campaigns.

It was not until the fall of the Roman Empire and the Renaissance that gambling began to take a back seat for more or less everyone. The year was 1000 AD and the name of the game was no longer ‘spend, spend, spend’ but instead concentrated on the stock market and the return of the bubonic plague. During this time, most people also adopted a more introspective attitude and began to see the world through a more critical lens – including their chances of winning or losing at the game tables.

Alliance Of Technology And Gaming 

In a world gone mobile, all bets are really off when it comes to traditional betting. Today, you can place a wager from the comfort of your home, from the palm of your hand or even from the confines of your digestive system (for the technologically-inclined).

In a similar vein, modern gaming technology – be it on a mobile phone, an Apple Watch or a dedicated gaming computer – provides the perfect conduit for someone sitting at home to place a wager on the go. The opportunity to place a wager whenever you have a mind to, wherever you may be, is both exhilarating and, in some ways, even more engaging than hitting the casino floor. With every step you take, the odds of winning or losing change as the game evolves in real time – and, for the really high-tech players, this evolution is sometimes so swift as to be imperceptible. Not to mention the fact that, with every step you take, your data is stored on a faraway server and never leaves the safe confines of your device. Not to mention the encryption that is employed to secure your personal information from nefarious third party hackers. All of this adds a new layer of polish to an already sophisticated practice.

Though there are more than 300 variations of the game of chance, the two that will be discussed here – roulette and blackjack – have managed to stand the test of time and remain some of the most popular games in the world. Even today, more people play roulette than any other game in the world and more people play blackjack than any other card game. This is largely due to the fact that these two games offer an entertaining way to play that is as compelling as it is simple.

The Math Behind The Game

At their most basic levels, both roulette and blackjack are simple games of chance. In a nutshell, you are simply rolling the respective dice or shuffling the deck of cards and hoping for the best. Though there is method behind these seemingly random events, there is no predicting what number will come up next or who will be standing in front of you when your cards are dealt. As you would expect, this makes for some incredibly boring television when viewed from an outside perspective. But it is, in fact, a magnificent spectacle from within.

In order to understand how these games work, it is first important to know that they are both based on a mathematical principle called the ‘law of large numbers’. Simply stated, this law dictates that, for the most part, the outcomes of large numbers of independent and identically distributed (i.i.d) events will tend to conform to a fixed pattern or distribution. In the case of roulette and blackjack, this pattern is referred to as the ‘fundamental law of probability’.

What this means is that, for the most part, the chances of any particular number coming up when you spin the wheel or deal the cards are equal to whatever number is currently printed on the cylinder or on the deck. In other words, the chances of getting a particular symbol, pattern or number is always the same no matter the size of the pot or the number of people playing. Though there are exceptions to this rule – such as when certain numbers or patterns appear to ‘tune’ the game significantly in favour of certain players – for the most part, this is what makes the game of chance so engrossing and exciting. The beauty of these two games is that, due to their simplicity, anyone can learn them and play them. Even kids can become proficient at playing roulette and blackjack simply by observing their parents or an older sibling playing. Though the probability may be daunting, the excitement of placing a wager and seeing the outcome is what keeps the average person enthralled for hours on end.

The Psychology Of Gambling

While the excitement provided by roulette and blackjack is undeniable, this is not necessarily a positive thing. As a matter of fact, in many people’s eyes, the very fact that these games provide such excitement may be their biggest downfall. After all, excitement without purpose often leads to trouble. This is why the practice of gambling is often looked upon with such suspicion, especially among religious authorities. In the Christian Bible, for instance, the Book of Ecclesiastes contains this telling verse:

  • “Vanity is attributed to the man who wastes his time playing games of chance”
  • “Heed the admonitions of your religious leaders and do not enter into temptation. They will be a guide to you on the journey to wealth and happiness”

Though the Bible does not specifically refer to gambling, this verse raises concerns about the effects that prolonged exposure to such excitement may have on a person. Today, these concerns are more than justified. According to the American Psychiatric Association, compulsive and addictive gambling is now recognized as a mental disorder. This is due, in part, to the fact that so few people ever recover from the negative effects of playing these games frequently and, in part, to the fact that these games of chance are so difficult to stop playing once you have started.

In the same way that food addiction and substance abuse trigger a physical dependence, so too do gambling and addiction to this point. This is why the only ‘cure’ for an addiction to roulette and blackjack is complete and total abstention. Though this may sound like an impossible dream for those who have already succumbed to the siren call of the green jackpot, it is not. In fact, the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) has created an entire section of their Code of Ethics titled, “HONESTY IN ADVERTISING AND BRAND SAFETY” that emphasizes the importance of maintaining a healthy distance from gaming devices and, in particular, those that are linked to gambling. Simply put, if you as an advertiser connect gambling in any way to your product, you will be subjected to stringent legal and financial penalties. This is because the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) considers gambling to be a form of illegal corruption.