Why Do We Believe in Fibonacci and Martingale?
For as long as gambling exists, people are trying to find a magic formula that would give them a small edge and allow them to become immensely rich. Many ideas that are still quite popular amongst gamblers appeared centuries ago. However, the most influential ones popped up during the era of renaissance and slightly later. It was a period of history when the humanity was fascinated by science and searched for an ultimate way to trick the randomness of this world.
This was also the time when roulette started to become popular and started spreading across the world. Gambling was in its earliest forms but it also evolved rapidly. Despite the quick spread of the entertainment industry, games did not change much. In fact, the roulette is still the same game with the same set of rules as centuries ago. Albeit, modern tables are way more stable and reliable.
When the fascination of science was at its peak, scientists started to search for mathematical laws in everything. There were people who were convinced that randomness is just another form of order. Some believed that chaos cannot exist. While this seemingly absurd notion is fundamentally right and the recent theories regarding strings and the fundamental mechanics ruling our universe support this idea, many things in our world are impossible to predict consistently.
This is the reason why predicting anything is as complex as it is. About 3 centuries ago, people simply did not know anything for sure and many theories started to spread across the globe despite having some major flaws. We know that these systems do not work especially in modern online casinos where outcomes are fine tuned to benefit the house. However, firm supporters of those systems exist and they continue to follow fundamentally flawed guidelines to their eventual misery. We are talking about two distinct strategies. We want to explain why people believe in this theories.
Martingale – an elegant and flawed idea
Modern gamblers and even self-proclaimed experts state that this system is designed specifically for roulette, but in reality the method existed even before and was refined in the beginning of the 20th century by mathematician Ville who coined out the term. However, the method was used for coin flips and roulettes since the 18th century and to some degree of success.
Advocates of the theory argued that with a large enough bank a player would never lose. One of the problems with the method is a relatively low net gain. This gain is really tiny compared to tremendous risks involved, but it is very consistent and it was the main selling point of the system. Many people saw the results and the essence of the method could be easily explained to people whose knowledge of arithmetic was quite basic. Many people also were not aware of how exponents work and couldn’t even count beyond certain numbers. It was relatively easy to spread this simple yet elegant theory.
If you don’t understand the power of exponents, you could reread an old Indian legend about a man who invented chess. We don’t want to waste time and space for the reiteration of the legend and give you a rare opportunity to google it for yourself. The morale is that the exponential growth of the bet will inevitably lead to a catastrophic result in the long run as no one possesses an infinite wealth.
The Fibonacci system
When myths about the previous strategies were debunked by many people and practicing math gurus, the “experts” started to search for new exciting ways to lure in people and force them to spend more money in casinos. Instead of explaining that an online casino should be an entertainment with occasional wins, many started telling fairytales about a fantastic method that would make everyone millionaires. The next phase was this method named after the famous Italian mathematician.
This is a system that was made up by a group of enthusiastic gamblers who suggested a new form of the same idea (essentially) that just relied on a different sequence of bets. First of all, we must understand that sequences are not laws of physics, these are simple sequences that naturally occur in the real world. While some may see some correlations, remember that correlation does not equal causation. The sequence goes like this:
This means that to learn the next number in the row, you need to combine two previous numbers. The simplest example is this: 1 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 5 – 8 – 13 – 21… The idea is that you must follow the sequence until you win. Again, the net gain is very low. Risks are exactly the same as the exponential nature is still in play. We will allow you to judge for yourself. Here is the progression for the sequence initiated by 1:
0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, 377, 610, 987, 1597, 2584, 4181, 6765, 10946, 17711, 28657, 46368, 75025, 121393, 196418, 317811, 514229, 832040, 1346269, 2178309, 3524578…
This is the exact same idea that serves as a fundament of all similar methods. People just coined out a new fancy term and tied to the system a famous name.
Why do we believe?
As seen from all of the above, the scinece behind both methods is quite depressing and tells us firmly that they simply don’t work. Why people believe in them?
- Reason #1. The Gambler’s fallacy. This is a logical paradox that affects all gamblers especially those who play in online casinos. A subjective assumption that everything abides the balancing nature meaning that a long streak of red sectors on the roulette tables will eventually be stopped by a series of blacks. However, the probability of any single game is 50%. It does not increase due to previous results, but this false presumption is the basis of all Martingale strategies. Our brain wants to balance and order everything and thus start following this fallacy naturally.
- Reason #2. Sunken cost fallacy. This is yet another logical paradox that prevents people from following the idea of cutting losses when they start reaching an unreasonable amount. Gamblers falsely believe that they “invested” too much to stop now and must continue until they win. However, there are special mathematical methods to reduce the risk of losing everything by simply learning how to bail on a streak of bad luck without waiting for the turnaround during the next round.
Sadly, we just want believe that we can control uncontrollable. Instead of searching for the “unicorn” strategy, just enjoy your time at an online casino and make sure that every single hour is a happy hour.