I’ve done a bunch of work in online poker lately (for Cigital), and so it’s important for me to improve my game to where I’m not just one of the fish. I was keen to try some of the software that’s out there, but I’m a Mac user. I’m not going to use Windows just to play poker, especially when both PokerStars and FullTilt Poker offer Mac native clients. That’s where Poker Copilot comes in. I tried a couple others, but they seemed too limited, too “beta,” for my purposes. The first revelation I had was when I started graphing my bankroll. I’m playing microlimit stakes (though I don’t include the axes here so you can’t tell just how much I’m playing, winning, losing, etc.).
That chart brought into sharp contrast where I was doing well and where I wasn’t. I think I am often less objective than I should be about my money, and this is just the exposure I need.
I think a lot of people probably like the heads-up display that shows you real-time feedback about yourself and your opponents. I watch myself a lot more than my opponents, because I can’t count on my own behavior, yet. I’m still learning whether I’m seeing too many flops, playing too many weak hands, trying to bluff when I have no idea what I’m doing, etc.
- It works. Just point it at your history files and off you go.
- Steve has clearly understood good graphic design, or at least some of the elements of, say, Edward Tufte. The “dashboard” gives some really simple line graphs with no axes that give you an instant feel for the way you’re trending.
- It’s real-time. You’re getting feedback while you play. Anyone who knows anything about learning will tell you that the closer the feedback is to the action (whether good or bad), the better you learn. Doing post-mortem analysis of a session later imparts different (not less valuable, but different) lessons.
- I find the heads-up display really informative. Again, I’m pretty much a novice, so almost anything helps me.
Areas for Improvement
- As a micro-stakes guy, I’m not sure I can justify the price. I go back and forth on it. I think at $15 or $20 I’d buy it without hesitation. At $50, though, it makes me pause.
- Despite the fact that I’m not getting the most out of the features it already has, I still feel sorta second-class. That is, the Windows people have more features (not that I would know what to do with them if I had them).
I hope more Mac people get into online poker so the demand will be there for rich and useful helpers. I’m guessing the demand is far weaker than for the Windows-based ones, which is a shame.