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What Is a Casino?


A casino is a gambling establishment that offers a variety of games of chance. It has been around for a long time, with primitive protodice and carved six-sided dice found in the oldest archaeological sites [Source: Schwartz]. Casinos became widely used during the late 20th century when nearly every European country changed its laws to permit them. The modern casino has a very uniform character throughout the world and is regulated by government regulations.

Most casinos offer a wide variety of games, and the winnings are determined randomly by computer chips inside each machine. In a casino, the games that are most profitable for the house are those with an element of skill, such as craps, roulette, blackjack, and video poker. In addition to these games, some casinos also feature poker and baccarat tables, where the players compete against each other and the casino makes money through a percentage of the total pot or by charging an hourly fee.

Security is a major concern in any casino. Dealers keep their eyes firmly on their own game, and they can quickly spot a cheating player or an erroneous betting pattern. The more sophisticated casinos rely on cameras to watch the whole room at once, and they can zoom in on suspicious patrons. In modern casino games, specialized chip tracking technology lets casinos monitor the exact amounts wagered minute-by-minute and detect any statistical deviations from expected results. The high-tech “eye-in-the-sky” systems are supervised by a team of employees who watch the video feeds in a room filled with banks of screens.