stanford wong Professional Video Poker Gambler
Wong is perhaps most well-known for his contributions to the game of blackjack and in sports betting activities. He has even had phrases coined after his name for the game of blackjack, but he is also famous in video poker circles.
Wong was born John Ferguson in 1943. His name, stanford wong, is a pseudonym. It is said that his first choice for a name was "Nevada Smith," but that that name had already been taken by some-one else. His first name was selected by taking his alma mater and his last name was selected in order to give him some "mystique of the Orient." He grew up playing cards with the family for fun and that is where he learnt his love for gambling.
In 1976, Wong was teaching finance courses at San Francisco State, while he was getting his PhD in finance from Stanford University in California. He was not happy teaching and as at that stage he was making more money from gambling than teaching, he began to pursue his career in gambling. As he held a contract to teach, he agreed to teach for $1 for the last term he was there, if he did not have to attend any meetings. He began playing blackjack.
Wong has written numerous books, particularly on blackjack and other casino betting games, but also on video poker. These are all available through his company, Pi Yee Press. His book on video poker, "Professional Video Poker," is no longer in print as it has become outdated, but it was a very good early guide to playing the game. It was published in 1993 and it is a good historical guide to how the game used to be played. In his book, he advocated speed and accuracy as a way of making more money.
Wong has also written some video poker software. "stanford wong Video Poker" allows a player to analyze almost any video poker situation – machine variations, bonus options and all pay schedules. A player can enter in their desired information, such a pay schedule for a particular game and can then analyze a play, learn a strategy, estimate a casino-player advantage or simply play the game.
He also wrote software called "Video Poker Analyzer" in 1991 and then "VPEXACT." He wrote VPEXACT at the request of a video poker professional player. The program revolves through every possible hand to find the best cards to hold and keeps track of the results of perfect play. It does this in order to be able to tell you the exact overall payback and the probability of achieving each winning combination. This takes two hours to one day depending on the specifications that are entered.
Wong currently lives with his wife in La Jolla, California. Wong's Pi Yee Press Company is now based in California, but Wong is still involved in its running, through the Internet.