Blackjack Legend: Julian Braun

Blackjack School

Not every blackjack legend has played the game professionally. This may be very surprising to some, but it is true! However, there is something even more surprising about the blackjack legend we are about to discuss.

The legend that we are referring to has not only made it to the Blackjack Hall of Fame, but is also considered to be more important to blackjack than any other blackjack player. This is amazing considering that he never made a penny playing the game for a living.

Julian Braun was born in 1929. He grew up in Chicago. He obtained degrees in physics and mathematics. He also served in the US Marine Corps.

His journey into the world of blackjack began when he read Edward O. Thorp’s book “Beat the Dealer”. This book has made history and influenced many players. Some even say it is the best book on blackjack ever written.

Julian Braun got in touch with Thorp after reading his book. He asked Thorp if he could have a copy of his computer program as Braun was a computer programmer that spent 25 years working for IBM as an expert programmer.

Julian Braun then did something very clever. He combined his knowledge of programming with his knowledge on blackjack to create a breakthrough strategy that drew from Thorp’s strategies but simplified and clarified them. He improved Thorp's Hi-Lo blackjack and basic blackjack strategies.

These improved strategies were then adopted by Thorp himself and he updated his great book to include this information and the 1966 edition of the book included Braun’s new ideas, which turned Brown into a bit of a celebrity in the blackjack community.

This also gave Braun the desire to continue with his new hobby. He kept on developing methods of counting cards. Once again, Braun's genius ideas made the books. Many classic works were updated with his ideas. Revere's 'Playing Blackjack as a Business'. Humble's 'The World's Greatest Blackjack Book'.

Many were surprised by Braun’s contribution, especially to books that seemed to already provide accurate and useful information. However Braun managed to do to improve even the most accomplished of methods.

Eventually Braun decided to write his own book. 'How to Play Winning Blackjack' that was published in 1980. This book was very different from other books. Its sole focus was the mathematics behind card counting and the mathematics behind blackjack strategy. Sadly, this book is no longer in print.

As you can see it is clear why Braun is considered such an important figure in the blackjack world. He changed everything. So many legends have had their own works updated by Braun. He has improved so many aspects of blackjack.

Despite all of this, he has never made a living from playing blackjack. He hardly even visited casinos. However, his fame helped him get barred from one casino at least. This has been the case with pretty much every blackjack legend. Since then, laws have been passed to prevent this.

Braun's story is nothing short of amazing. It comes as no surprise that Braun was chosen to be a member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame in 2005. However, he was never able to bask in the glory of it all as he passed away five years before at the age of 71.

Braun will never be forgotten for his special contribution to blackjack. Today, blackjack players are making more at the tables thanks to his work and they all hold a special place in their hearts for Braun and his remarkable work

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