Now I’ve been doing a lot of watching of the hit series “Lie To Me” (it has been canceled) lately and have also now began studying the website belonging to the man who is the real life version of Dr. Cal Lightman (http://www.paulekman.com/.) Anywho, I read something related to the baseline that these human lie detectors hunt for when determining if someone is telling the truth or lying. A baseline would be the amount of time between a question being asked and an answer being delivered. Long story short I finally figured out how to determine whether or not someone is bluffing or strong at the online poker table regardless of how many tables they’re at.
Think about it like this, regardless of how many tables a player is at or how terrible their internet connection is, they will eventually have a baseline between the amount of time it takes the computer to show them the buttons versus how quickly they check, bet, fold, etc. In most cases with multi-table players they’ll hit check as quickly as possible if they have a terrible hand to move back to the other table they’re at. If you happen to be playing multi tables as well and have the same opponent at two or more tables you may be able to use this information to your advantage as well.
Now some players may try to fake weakness here or there using the auto-check button, then coming over the top of an opponent. In this case it wouldn’t be a baseline we’re looking at as its an automatic trigger created by the computer. This would simply be deception for no other reason than to be deceptive. Label that person as such and move on.
A player contemplating a bet versus a call when drawing may take (for example) 5 seconds to react. When they’re strong they may take 3 seconds to react. Even if they’re at multiple tables and on a slow internet connection they’ll still have some sort of time lag between when they make a certain move versus another.
This was the original flaw in my thinking. I’d originally believed that a slow internet connection or playing at multiple tables would cause it to be impossible to determine whether or not someone is strong or weak (except in the case of the auto-check.) But there still has to be a difference in reaction time depending on what the person is up to. Most of us don’t even think about it while we’re playing and even if we do, what are we gonna do, count to five before making a move each and every time?
Try to time just one player the next time you’re online and see if you can’t figure out what they’re up to based on the timing of their moves. Combine this with previous hand logs and other information you pick up on your opponent to make some excellent notes to strip him of his chips each and every time you see him at the table.