ASK Google to search "beat the pokies" and it will deliver 139,000 results in about 0.38 seconds.
That's not bad for a request about a pastime that well-respected gambling researchers will tell you is impossible to make a living from.
The Google search reveals a plethora of people who seem super keen on sharing their "winning" tricks, tips and hacks with punters.
Key among these "experts" are self-proclaimed Aussie "pokie king" Peter Liston - who reckons he turned "$500 into millions" and "so can you" - and Adam Morris - the "Author of Pokie Secrets, Australia's #1 selling book on pokies".
However, there is a catch. Tapping into these fonts of knowledge comes at a price.
Mr Liston, who swapped his career as a school teacher for gambling teacher, charges $7900 for three days of "tuition and demonstrations in the casinos or venues where you are most likely to make your income".
The Melbourne father of three says he shows punters how to cash in on progressive jackpots - that is jackpots that are guaranteed to go off by the time they reach a pre-set amount.
"I knew the poker machines couldn't be beaten but I asked myself whether the progressive jackpots could ever rise to a point where the jackpot was worth more than the expected cost of getting it," Mr Liston says.
Mr Liston says he makes a 10% profit on his pokie spend and that he has taught about 12 people to do the same over the past few years.
Mr Liston also charges $19.95 for his book, Playing Poker Machines as Business.
Meanwhile, his colleague Adam Morris - who does not have any contact details on his website - sells his book of "secrets" for $37.
"I only have a few left - this isn't some cheap crappy e-book that can just be copied off and passed around," Mr Morris spruiks on his internet site.
"I only printed 500 of these books and I have less than 50 copies left."
CQUniversity's Matthew Rockloff has spent much of his academic career researching gambling, particularly poker machines, and he draws one simple conclusion - it's impossible to make a living playing the pokies.
Prof Rockloff said gamblers had periods where the reels went their way but in the long run they stood to lose all money wagered.
He said punters had a better chance at profiting from card-based poker because that game was based on skill, rather than chance.
"Some poker machine players will say there are dumb ways and smart ways to play," he said.
"For example, people will say 'You should always bet just one line on the machine' but in reality what they are doing is just playing less intensively.
"You may win more often on multiple lines, while on one line (of play) you will almost never win.
"However, when you do win playing one line, you get an enormous amount back.
"By playing the machines in different ways you can change the characteristics of how the machines deliver wins, but you can't change the rate by which they will pay out."
Monash University School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine academic Dr Charles Livingstone said poker machines were designed to make people think they could win.
"They con people into thinking they have a much better of chance of winning than they actually do," Dr Livingstone said.
"For example they have many design features that make it appear that you are getting close to a win when in fact there's no chance." - ARM NEWSDESK
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