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Online Poker - Are My Cards Truly Random?

Aug 17, 2007
Online Poker 101

There is no shortage of online poker sites, many offering attractive signup incentives. Many people have the same initial questions and this article tries to answer the basic questions and concerns of the novice player. Once you have read this short article you will be ready to begin playing for yourself, be it for recreation or excitement, the world of online poker is waiting for you.

1. Are my cards truly random?

Online poker rooms use a random number generator to ensure cards dealt never follow a predictable pattern. A random number generator uses the same algorithms that are used in the SSL encryption technology. You are probably familiar with SSL encryption if you have ever used online banking.

2. If I win will I get paid?

The short answer is yes, if you have chosen a reputable site. Online poker rooms have nothing at stake in the games; they sell chips to players and distribute money to winners after the game. An online poker room makes their money by collecting a small percentage from each pot, referred to as the rake, which is in the area of 5% of each pot.

3. Are there any advantages to playing online poker versus live games?

The short answer is yes! Because there are virtually no overhead costs, online poker rooms have much lower rakes than a casino or live game can offer. Online rakes are usually 5% while a casino can have a rake between 10-20%.

Another advantage to online poker is that many sites offer free play, where you can get comfortable with how online poker playing works before diving in and placing your first wager. It has been noted that many novice players shy away from the poker tables at a casino because they are not comfortable placing their first wager blindly before being familiar with the rules of play. Online poker playing allows the player to break the ice with free plays so that when they are ready to begin betting they already have a familiarity with the setup and procedures.

Another factor that makes online poker more attractive is that the poker software will let you know exactly how much is in the pot, the amount other players have bet and the minimum and maximum amount you may bet. This is a relief for the novice player and also valuable information for the advanced player who can use this information to make more accurate pot odds calculations.
About the Author
S. Stammberger is editor of A1Computer Games . A resource center for internet games and computer games.
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