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StrategyFixed Limit

Making notes to improve your reads


In this article
  • How to write notes
  • How to use them
  • When you can trust reads

Why should I keep notes? The micro limits are full of fish and later on I can use Elephant. Live game players and tells can't compete with the statistics power of tracking software anyway!

Yet then why is it that I am unsure what to do, against these omnipresent fish-donks who raise IP on the flop, or after the fifth consecutive check-raise on the turn? "Call the first donkbet and then re-evaluate", is a good tip, as well as "Flop 3-bets IP generally indicate overcards", but surely there has to be some better way of dealing with these situations?

Your decisions in the online poker jungle are mostly mathematical decisions based on noted trends (aggression, showdown frequency, preflop ranges) displayed by your opponents. Elephant, or similar software such as PokerTracker and PokerAce, provides you with a lot of information that will help you to optimize your game against different players.

When multi-tabling, it is much harder to keep track of the individual flow of each table and you must therefore rely heavily on tracking software to act as your memory. But in order for such statistics to be accurate, you need a fairly large sample size, perhaps one of 10000+ hands, which you rarely have. So even if you have tracking software, without a large sample, you cannot play "infallibly".

Aside from this we have to take into consideration that nobody always plays the same, since such things as tilt, people trying to be tricky and plain old fishiness often come into play. So you may find yourself in irregular situations where you have tough decisions to make. Yet Elephant says you have already played over 500 hands against this player!  Why is it then, that you still do not really know what to do?

The reason is quite simple: You have taken no notice of how they play. A calldown when a fish donks may be profitable, but how are you to react when you see such an action from a TAG?

In our online multi-tabling world, we label players according to certain criteria (fish, TAG, rock, maniac) and we use software such as Elephant and Pokertracker to fine tune our image of them. So we think, but this is only a rough idea of how they play, while we might be able to extract an extra 0.5-1BB/100 with the aid of notes made to save us from difficult situations, if we happen to run into the same opponents again.

Among the flood of all the players out there, who can remember details, except for against ones favorite opponents and arch-enemies?


That's not the entire article...

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Comments (3)

#1 mouse89, 03 Nov 08 20:55


#2 MadspiderEST, 15 Feb 11 00:03


#3 smiler82, 08 Oct 12 13:40

why no Villian's hand in Example #7?
is that ok?