Roulette is a casino game in which players bet on one of several possible outcomes of a spinning wheel. The bets can be on a single number, various groupings of numbers, the colors red and black, or whether the ball will land in a high or low section of the wheel. Its popularity in casinos around the world has led to it becoming synonymous with gambling. There are a number of different strategies for playing roulette, and many people claim to have developed systems that will help them win. However, the only way to beat the house edge is by predicting where the ball will land before it spins. This can be accomplished by looking for a rigged wheel or betting against the large bets. The game is played on a circular table with a tilted track running around its outer edges. A dealer spins a wheel in one direction and rolls a small ball in the opposite direction around the track, and the ball stops wherever it hits the track. The dealer then announces “no more bets!” to close betting for the round, preventing cheating or other advantage-taking activities. Inside bets are those placed on the numbered sections of the table, while outside bets are those placed on the colored areas of the layout (red and black, odd and even). The house edge for inside bets is higher than that of outside bets, but the payouts are much larger. Roulette wheels originally had one red and two black slots for the numbers 1 to 36, but with a growing desire for gambling in America the US version was created with an additional green pocket for a double zero. This changed the odds of a straight bet from 35:1 to 40:1. The American version is less popular than the European version, which is still widely available in European casinos and online. Some people believe that the game was invented by 17th century French physicist Blaise Pascal, who was trying to create a machine that could demonstrate perpetual motion. Others think it was invented by a Dominican monk, or adapted from the games hoca and portique. Regardless, the game evolved to its present form in France by the early 18th century and quickly became popular in casinos and gambling dens across Europe. Today, casinos around the world offer a wide variety of Roulette variations with different rules and wheel configurations.