The Flop, Turn and River Cards

To win the pot in Texas Hold’em, the player must have the highest five-card combination at the end to collect the pot.

At the start of every hand, each player is dealt two “hole” cards face down with the ability to use the cards in the middle known as community cards. The community cards are dealt face up enabling everyone at the table to see what their best possible five card hand is.

Three betting choices exist after the betting begins. Players can either fold, call or raise. If a player doesn’t like their hole cards, they fold. If the player decides to “call” then the size of the current bet required is matched. If the player opts to “raise”, then the size of the bet is increased.

Calling or raising is the only way to stay in the game. After everyone has the opportunity to bet or fold, the three community cards are dealt. This is called the “flop”. The first player to act may “check”, without wagering any more money and still be considered an active player in the game. The first player can also bet. Once a bet is initiated, all other players must fold, call, or raise to stay in the game, including those who have initially checked.

After betting has ceased, a fourth card, called the “turn” card is dealt and another round of betting ensues. The “river” is the final card dealt which gives players the opportunity for one last round of betting.

If there is a “showdown”, with two or more remaining players, all the hole cards are shown and the best hand wins. If a tie occurs the pot is split.

The Good and Bad Impacts of Online Gaming

Ever since the emergence of Internet, online games have started to make waves changing the lives of gamers around the world. We can still recall a time when we were limited by slow computers with crawling dialup speed. There was simply no way to develop online games to the extent that they have evolved today. Today, online games are very advanced.

We now have many options that were previously not thought to be possible. Things like streaming 3-D animation graphics with superb surround sound stereo now have the ability to make us all addicted to gaming.

Playing online games is so much more different than playing games in a single player mode where your only challenge is to beat the computer. Online gaming allows you to pit your wits against the top gamers in the world. In fact, certain game platforms cater to this by having rankings to determine the champions. There can be no doubt that with this ranking system, gamers have become very motivated to win.

To get to the top of the ladder is serious business to them. Whether it is RPG (role playing games), shooting or strategy games, it is not surprising to see that online gaming is not just a teenage obsession. Adults have got into the groove as well.

Nowadays, online games are so popular that we can even see annual game tournaments being organized around the world. Attractive prizes become the lure for participants from everywhere. Some of these tournaments are so well organized that they are comparable to the high standards of other international sports tournaments with big sponsors and advanced facilities. In fact, today there is actually a space for professional gamers.

Their job is to hone their skills and pursue gaming just like any other sports person would. The emergence of online games also created many opportunities for gamers to increase their income. Many people do not realize that with the market becoming so huge and with the race to be at the top, people are actually willing to pay to obtain these virtual online characters. This act is known as “farming”, whereby you develop a character and sell it.

However, there are downsides associated with playing online games. The world has become so attached to online gaming that many people prefer to interact only through games. They loathe the idea of social interaction. This, of course, is not advisable. In fact, some also link this trend to unhealthy lifestyles because it also means sitting in one position all day without much activity. Children also become attracted to online games and find it hard to concentrate to their studies.

However, what is being said here is only partially true. For instance, by limiting gaming to a certain number of hours a day, there can actually be some positive effects. Scientific studies have found that online games can train the human mind to be agile and alert. Gamers are always exposed to conditions whereby they have to learn to adapt and develop certain strategies in order to survive. Ultimately, it all depends on whether the individual can control himself and make the most of the experience.

Tips on Texas Holdem Strategy

Texas Holdem is a game of perception. If you have a big hand you want your opponents to think you have nothing so you can get more money out of them and if you have nothing you want them to think you have the best hand possible. Well, your position that you are sitting in at the poker table contributes to your overall perception as well. Sometimes it’s a positive contribution and sometimes it’s a negative contribution. So before you make your next bet in a Texas Holdem poker game, you may want to take a look around the table and recognize all the factors before you bet.

On the Button

Being on the button means that you have the dealer button in front of you. Traditionally this is the most powerful position to be in at the table. The reason this position is so powerful is that the person that is on the button is the last player to act after the flop is shown. You can see how this would be an enviable position because you get to see what everyone else is doing before you decide what you are going to do.

Many times a poker player that is on the button will have the opportunity to steal the blinds as well. This happens when there is no action on the table (everyone in front of you has folded) and the only players left in the hand are the player that is on the button and the big and small blinds. In this particular situation, it may be a good idea to test the players in the blind positions by raising on the button. The object of doing this is to have the players in the blind positions fold their hands without seeing the flop. It is good poker strategy to try to steal the blinds whether you are holding a good hand or not. Once again, poker is all about perception.

In the Blinds

If you are in either the big blind position or in the small blind position, you are traditionally called “out of position”. This position is called out of position because it is the weakest position to be in because you are the first to act once the flop is shown. If you are playing a hand while in one of the blind positions just keep in mind that you are the first to act and an experienced poker player will know how to exploit this information.

You can also choose to use the big or small blind positions to your advantage. As mentioned earlier, the blind positions are traditionally the weakest players at the table because they are the first to act once the flop is displayed. Some poker players think differently. Some players think that the first person to act has the first chance to bet and that is a good thing. An aggressive player will take advantage of this opportunity even if they have missed the flop completely.

Hint:

When you are in the blind positions, try to utilize the continuation bet. This is a great tool that experienced poker players use at the right time in order to collect pretty sizable pots. If you are in one of the blinds and a number of people are in the hand but no one has raised the pot, what you would do is raise the pot a significant amount (maybe 3-5 times the big blind) in order to get rid of any of the marginal hands that might still exist. Let’s say you get one or two people that call. Since you are first to act, you would use this to your advantage by placing another significant bet after the flop is displayed. This will immediately get your opponents to think that you have some type of huge hand like two aces or two kings. Usually, if the others hit nothing on the flop they will gracefully lay their hands down. Once again, you can do this with any type of hand because the perception is that your hand is huge.

Addiction, The Silent Killer

The word “addiction” is derived from a Latin term for “enslaved by” or “bound to.” Anyone who has struggled to overcome an addiction or has tried to help someone else to do so understands why.

Addiction exerts a long and powerful influence on the brain that manifests in three distinct ways: craving for the object of addiction, loss of control over its use, and continuing involvement with it despite adverse consequences.

Addiction is a condition that results when a person ingests a substance (e.g., alcohol, cocaine, nicotine) or engages in an activity (e.g., gambling, sex, shopping) that can be pleasurable, but the continued use/act of which becomes compulsive and interferes with ordinary life responsibilities, such as work, relationships, or health. Users may not be aware that their behavior is out of control and causing problems for themselves and others.

The word addiction is used in several different ways. One definition describes physical addiction. This is a biological state in which the body adapts to the presence of a drug so that drug no longer has the same effect, otherwise known as a tolerance. Another form of physical addiction is the phenomenon of overreaction by the brain to drugs (or to cues associated with the drugs). An alcoholic walking into a bar, for instance, will feel an extra pull to have a drink because of these cues.

People with an addiction do not have control over what they are doing, taking or using. Their addiction may reach a point at which it is harmful.

Addictions do not only include physical things we consume, such as drugs or alcohol, but may include virtually anything, such abstract things as gambling to seemingly harmless products, such as chocolate – in other words, addiction may refer to a substance dependence (e.g. drug addiction) or behavioral addiction (e.g. gambling addiction).

However, most addictive behavior is not related to either physical tolerance or exposure to cues. People compulsively use drugs, gamble, or shop nearly always in reaction to being emotionally stressed, whether or not they have a physical addiction. Since these psychologically based addictions are not based on drug or brain effects, they can account for why people frequently switch addictive actions from one drug to a completely different kind of drug, or even to a non-drug behavior.

Addiction, often referred to as dependency often leads to tolerance – the addicted person needs larger and more regular amounts of whatever they are addicted to in order to receive the same effect. Often, the initial reward is no longer felt, and the addiction continues because withdrawal is so unpleasant.

When referring to any kind of addiction, it is important to recognize that its cause is not simply a search for pleasure and that addiction has nothing to do with one’s morality or strength of character.

Experts debate whether addiction is a “disease” or a true mental illness, whether drug dependence and addiction mean the same thing, and many other aspects of addiction. Such debates are not likely to be resolved soon.