By Ben Mezrich
He performed in casinos worldwide with a plan to make himself richer than an individual might be able to think -- however it may approximately fee him his existence. Semyon Dukach was once referred to as the Darling of Las Vegas. A legend at age twenty-one, this cocky hotshot was once the most important excessive curler to seem in Sin urban in a long time, a mathematical genius with a procedure the casinos had by no means visible earlier than and could not cease -- a procedure that hasn't ever been printed before; that has not anything to do with card counting, wasn't unlawful, and used to be extra robust than whatever that have been attempted prior to. Las Vegas. Atlantic urban. Aruba. Barcelona. London. And the jewel of the playing crown -- Monte Carlo. Dukach and his fellow MIT scholars hit all of them and made hundreds of thousands. They got here in challenging, with stacks of money; sizeable, doubtless insane bets; ladies placing on their palms; and faux identities. even if they have been taking sessions and learning for checks through the week, over the weekends they stormed the blackjack tables basically to be careworn, banned from casinos, threatened at gunpoint, and crushed in Vegas's infamous again rooms. The stakes have been excessive, the risks very genuine, however the gamers have been as much as the demanding situations, outcomes be damned. there has been Semyon Dukach himself, tired of tuition and broke; Victor Cassius, the slick, incredible MIT grad scholar who galvanized the staff; Owen Keller, with attractive skill yet a depressing previous that will trap as much as him; and Allie Simpson, vivid, smart, and a dinner party for the eyes. within the lecture room, they have been geeks. at the on line casino ground, they have been unstoppable. Busting Vega$ is Dukach's unbelievably real tale; a riveting account of huge greed, extra, hubris, intercourse, love, violence, worry, and statistics that's high-stakes leisure at its top.
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Additional info for Busting Vegas: The MIT Whiz Kid Who Brought the Casinos to Their Knees
A genius, but beyond that, an independent mind, a wild thinker—and a hungry soul. “You’ve been here before, right? ” He led me past a pair of Mac computers to a steel bench overloaded with wiring and circuit boards. Above the bench, afﬁxed to the wall by two plastic hooks, was what looked to be a down jacket— except this jacket was right out of a sci-ﬁ movie. Day-Glo wires ran up and down the sleeves, leading to small diodes and blinking switches at the cuffs, collar, and central zipper. A plasma readout was attached below one lapel, brilliant green numbers indicating temperature, pressure, humidity, wind speed, and a dozen other variables that made little sense to anyone uninitiated to the world of cyborg clothing.
As for Allie, the hot blonde from the MIT classroom, he’d seen her a few times in passing. He’d even been present for her ﬁrst checkout session, and he’d been impressed by her ability with the cards and her grasp of the math. She’d made only two counting mistakes in the six-deck shoe, too many to get her rated for a Vegas trip, but better than most. Everyone failed the checkout the ﬁrst time through; everyone, that is, except for Semyon. He’d been the only one to pass on the ﬁrst try, stunning the room—especially Victor—who had just gotten through explaining to the gathered crew that it usually took three or four checkouts before one was ready for Vegas.
As far as Semyon could tell, Victor was setting up the biggest team of card counters the world had ever seen. He had recruited more than forty kids, most with mechanical-engineering or mathematics backgrounds, and was training them all in shifts, teaching them the skills of card counting and testing them in an almost continuous process of checkout, failure, and recheckout. Many of the kids were sharp, some were even geniuses—but Semyon was pretty sure he was a standout star in BUSTING VEGA$ 4 31 terms of counting ability.