The Man Vs Poker Robot

How we reached more than 50 million people on behalf of

100k at stake in a battle between man and machine


Reaching more than 50 million people around the world, The Man Vs Poker Robot Competition, on behalf of, was known as “Deep Bluff” (after the classic IBM “Deep Blue chess” competition of Man vs. Computer). In order to battle the computer in-person, we hired “The Unabomber” Phil Laak in a battle royale with a 100k Money Prize to the winner (we recruited 6 “pokerbot” creators from around the world to participate in the competition). Why was this interesting to mass consumers, technology-philes and poker players? Because computer programs have conquered checkers, chess and, most recently, backgammon. By rapidly evaluating plays more moves ahead than a person can, computers routinely beat the strongest human players in those games. When Joseph Menn broke the story on the front page of The Los Angeles Times, the story went global for months leading up to the event.