EVERYBODY'S talking about it. Nice job HEM team at generating some serious buzz. My first reaction after hearing of a few things was: yeah, that's cool, but you're still going to have to be good at poker to win. Seriously, I'm getting the sense from some folks that there is an expectation that HEM 2 will revolutionize how the game is played. Pssssh. I don't buy it.
To give a fair perspective though, I actually read and watched a couple articles and videos on the new features, prior to writing this. That definitely changed my attitude a little. SEXY!! The interface is FAR superior, more intuitive, and endlessly configurable. I'll list a few of the specific features I've read about or seen and my corresponding perspective. Also, for those active in the Beta, I'd love to hear some first hand accounts!
1) Hero stats. Now you will know not only how much villains 3-bet vs a steal but more specifically how much they 3-bet vs you. The first thing that comes to mind is that, this will take a HUGE sample to be meaningful. And it's not like something you can datamine or buy hands for, since you have to be IN the hand. But sure this could be useful for players that are in small pools (High stakes or small sites) and play all the time.
Also, regarding all the new stats in general: you can give someone all the data in the world, but it's how you interpret it. I'm skeptical that pushing a lot of new numbers on the industry will really have any major effect on the play itself.
2) Performance improvements (2x - 4x faster import). It seemed fast to me before. Nice job tech guys.
3) HM sync and storing hands in the cloud. The idea is your hands are stored off site. I suppose that's safer in case your computer crashes. Also, it lets you access from 2 different computers. Well, I figured out how to do that with HEM 1, so not new to me. Also, does this enable many players to all start sharing one big database??? I'm curious how the security is maintained. Can anyone speak to this?
4) Integrated replayer. Very cool. It sits in a corner of your screen if you want. So you don't have to keep flipping back and forth between the main window and the replayer window.
5) Heat maps for the range diagrams. They're finally catching up with other apps like all-in expert.
6) HUD charts. Now you can have little bar graphs show up in your hud in addition to numbers. NICE. You can interpret a color or the size of a shape much faster than a number. This will make for quicker profiling. And clever charts can summarize a number of stats at once.
7) Notecaddy. This is intense. ALL kinds of data available now in notes, including these spiky range graphs that at a glance tell you how polarized or merged a player's range is in a particular spot. Cool idea. My question is: is it too much? We use our notes at the table during live decisions, and thus need to be able to interpret them very quickly.
8) HUD configuration. SOOOO much better. Configuring your HUD before was a clunky, non-intuitive process. I'm constantly showing people how to do this. The new one should be cake for anyone new to pick up.
9) Player analysis tab. I'm probably MOST excited about this. I love doing case studies on my fellow regs or sifting through summary stats on all the winning regs at my level to look for common exploits they've discovered. This is hard to do with HEM 1 but looks like it's gotten MUCH better.
10) Companion for iPhone, iPad, iTouch apps. What?! Seriously?! Awesome! I'm totally going to do my hand reviews and case studies in the bank line-up now.
A quick personal update: it's been about 2 months since I've returned home from my trip around the world. It's SOOO nice to be back and get my summer on. Also, reducing my coaching rates has resulted in a SURGE OF COACHING business. This has in turn created a number of interesting opportunities: from getting involved in stables to staking to running an active google poker group, not to mention meeting a ton of guys IRL that popped up here in Victoria. Good times.