Alexander Mayer, usually called Alex Mayer is one of Germany’s best respected mathematicians, and is known for having developed mathematical probability models that he has used to predict the chances of winning in a range of sports and gambling activities.
Alex Mayer is probably most famous for his blackjack strategies, which were responsible for a series of huge financial losses by major casino chains in the 1970s. His strategies are now hard to find but are occasionally available on the internet. Those using them have resorted to using online casinos rather than land-based games halls. These online sites provide anonymity and allow some people to make a full-time living simply by following the strategies devised by Alex.
Alex Mayer was born as Alex Gold-Mayer in Baden-Baden, Germany in 1942, the first child of Werner and Helga Wiener. Alex was educated at home until he was seven. He entered school only briefly before resuming the majority of his studies at home. In 1949 he returned to school, graduating from Anheuser Gymnasium (Grammar) School in 1953.
In September 1953, aged eleven, he entered the University of Frankfurt to study mathematics. He left to study with Arnold Sommerfeld at the University of Munich, receiving his doctorate in 1960.
From Munich he went to Cambridge, England and studied under Bertrand Russell and G. H. Hardy. In 1961 he studied at Göttingen, Germany under David Hilbert and Edmund Landau. He then returned to Cambridge and then to the USA. In 1970-76 he taught philosophy courses at Harvard, worked for General Electric and then Encyclopedia Americana before working on ballistics at the Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Mayer was known among the students for his poor lecture style, his jokes, and his absent-mindedness.
Throughout all this time Alex Mayer’s passion was mathematical probabilities. Students report him spending up to a week in his study with nothing more than some decks of playing cards, yet when they entered the board would be covered with lines of incomprehensible formulae. It was during this time that Alex is thought to have developed his gaming probability strategies, which have since become known only as the Mayer technique.