Some Things I Learned About Automated Trading Systems From Writing a Poker Bot

Discussion in 'Automated Trading' started by pipscooper, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. I will use this space to recount and reflect on some of the things I would like to remember from my experience in writing a poker bot. The purpose of learning how to play poker and writing a poker bot was purely to learn about automated trading systems. Poker is a game of incomplete information. Trading is also a game of incomplete information - this is the connection or premise when I started out. I feel the time I spent doing this was worthwhile but at the moment I'm not playing poker nor is my poker bot, nor do I expect to do so in the future.

    Let me start off by saying my goal was to do better than breakeven and to learn something from the experience. On both counts I succeeded. The final analysis of my poker bot experience was that the actual poker playing (.5/1 Party Poker Limit holdem) by the bot in automated fashion was just slightly better than breakeven. I think the bot made about $30 in about 3 months of on and off play. I did manage to make about $300 in rake/bonuses during that same time by playing off the hands, and my own play (non bot related) accounted for about $60 in poker profits. The money is piddly and not the point of this thread. The point is to talk about some of the things I have learned or that I think can apply to trading. That will be the focus of my posts, and I hope of the replies on this thread.

    (So this is not a "how to write a poker bot" thread nor do I care to talk about selling poker bots. My primary interest is automated trading systems.)

    Good trading to all.
  2. 3rdocagt


    Could you please explain what a "bot" is. TY.
  3. rwk


    "Bot" is computerese for "robot". In this case, it is a program, not a complete machine that can move under its own direction.

    I'll be interested to read what can be learned. I have been using a semiautomated ATS for two years with great success. The next step up to full automation seems bigger than the one from manual to semiautomation.
  4. keep scooping those pips, mate!
  5. TimP


    Bots will have a place in most active trading of the future, with options ranging from grey-box solutions where algorithms scan, perform analysis and give signals to the trader, who then makes the final solutions; to black-box mechanisms where objectives are identified, trading parameters set to manage risk in light of those objectives, and algorithms drive actual trading for periods of time, as set by business policy or human monitoring and intervention.
  6. whatever. the ultimate end is that markets will cease to exist when people cease to make them. the machines will box themselves into a mathematically constructed box. (applying reductio ad absurdum).
  7. Maybe you can explain something to me that I have been wondering about. How do you intercept the supposedly encrypted input from the poker site for your bot to interact with? I know nothing about programming and was wondering if a bot was even possible.
  8. A marketmaking bot hardly qualifies for the turing test.
  9. jmccain


    You can have your bot read the text inside the 'dealer' chat window and figure out the players/hands this way. There is a free hand parser available on but a competent programmer could write his own in a few days.

    A much more complicated way is to take a screen shot every few milliseconds and scrape the action from the screen.
  10. nbates


    Yea, I recall similar gloom & doom from traditional brokers at the onset of self-directed online trading :)
    #10     Jul 6, 2005