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Memory and Law$
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Lynn Nadel and Walter P. Sinnott-Armstrong

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199920754

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199920754.001.0001

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Criminalizing Cognitive Enhancement at the Blackjack Table

Criminalizing Cognitive Enhancement at the Blackjack Table

(p.307) 12 Criminalizing Cognitive Enhancement at the Blackjack Table
Memory and Law

Adam J. Kolber

Oxford University Press

Blackjack players who “count cards” keep track of cards that have already been played and use this knowledge to turn the probability of winning in their favor. So long as card counters rely on their own memory and computational skills, they have violated no laws and can make sizable profits. When players use a “device” to help them count cards, however, they may be committing a serious crime. This chapter considers whether statutes prohibiting the use of devices at the blackjack table can be justified based either on concerns about cognitive enhancement or thought privacy. Both proposed justifications are deemed lacking.

Keywords:   blackjack, cognitive enhancement, card counting, privacy, thought privacy, neuroethics, neurolaw

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