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Aug 11, 2012

Poker Study shows Brain reacts Differently in Live and Online Poker

By RTR Dennis

Everybody knows that there’s a major difference when it comes to live and online poker since players are actually sitting next to their opponents in the live version. However, what poker players may not realize is that one section of their brain acts completely differently when it comes to playing the two versions of the game. A Duke University study revealed these intriguing findings, and here’s a deeper look at their research.

Brain Activity
To set up their study, Duke researchers had various people play both live and online poker. While the poker players were grinding, their neural reactions were observed in both land-based and online settings. Neural imaging revealed that a certain area of the brain called the temporal-parietal junction was mainly responsible for deciding an opponent’s skill level and whether or not to bluff them. However, the interesting thing is that the temporal-parietal junction was only active in live poker play.

Scott Huettel, who directed this study, talked about the results by saying, “Often the brain is considered to have an entire ‘social network’ comprising a number of regions that help us interact with others in social contexts. Our analysis looked at all of those regions and found that all but one responded in essentially the same way against the human and computer opponents.”

What can be learned from this Study?
The study’s researchers haven’t totally sorted out what the results mean, or why players only use their temporal-parietal junction against human opponents. However, McKell Carter, who is a postdoctoral fellow at Duke, did offer some explanation on the matter.
Carter said that the temporal-parietal junction combines a lot of information gained by biology and attention such as determining, “Is that another person?” Seeing as how people like to be social, they pay more overall attention to live opponents than they would an online poker player.

Our Research says get Rakeback
Moving past the Duke University study, we’d like to let you know about the results from our own research on the brain. Assuming your brain has any logical side to it at all, you’ll seek out rakeback deals when you play online poker. By getting rakeback, you save major money on both cash game and poker tournament rake, thus improving your chances of making profits.