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Edward Thorp

Dr. Edward O. Thorp is a professional blackjack player, mathematics professor and author of Beat the Dealer: A Winning Strategy for the Game of Twenty-One, which was originally published in 1962. Thorp is credited with being the first person to mathematically prove that card counting could be used to win the game of blackjack. In fact, whereas the blackjack community had always given the house a 5% edge, Thorp’s book proved that card counting could give the player a 1% advantage over the house.

In addition to upsetting the community’s beliefs regarding blackjack odds, Thorp also worked with Claude Shannon to co-invent the first wearable computer to use in winning the game of roulette.

Edward Thorp Bio & Education

A year after receiving his Ph.D. from the University of California in Los Angeles in 1958, Thorp went on to work at M.I.T. until 1961. He then became a professor of mathematics at the University of California in Irving from 1965 to 1977 and then became a professor of mathematics as well as finance from 1977 to 1982. During this time and after retiring from teaching, Thorp wrote numerous papers on game theory, probability and functional analysis. After writing Beat the Dealer: A Winning Strategy for the Game of Twenty-One, he wrote Elementary Probability in 1966, co-wrote Beat the Market with S.T. Kassouf in 1967 and wrote Mathematics of Gambling in 1984.

Edward Thorp Conquers Wall Street

Thanks to his mathematical prowess, Thorp has also been quite successful in the securities markets world. Ever since he co-authorized Beat the Market, his personal portfolio and his hedge funds have been profitable every year. In addition, in 1969, he launched the first market neutral hedge fund along with partner Jay Regan. Thorp is currently President of Newport Beach based company Edward O. Thorp & Associates.

Find out about additional blackjack players that have had a large impact on the game including Andy Bloch.

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