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Tags lotteries , lottery incidents , probability

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Old 20th September 2018, 12:09 AM   #1
cullennz
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Semi interesting occurrence re NZ lottery this week

This might be boring

If so I apologise

Probably the most common thing with lottery some people seem to not get is the chances of it being the numbers 1,2,3,4,5 are the same as any other group of numbers, and assume it is not possible.

This week ours was nearly the next best thing

3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.

40 people won and shared by the way, which is the most by a country mile.

I'm no psychologist, but would imagine it is because every one except 13 can be someones birth month and they are all under 31 so cover days as well.

So think it tends to show people still use birthdates to pick their numbers
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Old 20th September 2018, 01:21 AM   #2
GnaGnaMan
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
This might be boring

If so I apologise

Probably the most common thing with lottery some people seem to not get is the chances of it being the numbers 1,2,3,4,5 are the same as any other group of numbers, and assume it is not possible.

This week ours was nearly the next best thing

3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.

40 people won and shared by the way, which is the most by a country mile.

I'm no psychologist, but would imagine it is because every one except 13 can be someones birth month and they are all under 31 so cover days as well.

So think it tends to show people still use birthdates to pick their numbers
I remember an article about which numbers get played. Unfortunately a quick google on gets me info about which numbers are drawn.

What I remember is that patterns are very commonly played. There is an astonishing number of smartasses actually playing 1,2,3,4,5,6.
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Old 20th September 2018, 02:22 AM   #3
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Pretty straightforward. 11 is a “lucky” number. 13 is perversely viewed the same way. When you see 11, 13 and 8 (the Chinese lucky number) in a lottery draw you can bank on a heap of winners.

Although I can’t prove it, my guess is that when people choose birthdates for lotto, it’s the day rather than the month. I recall reading that there are fewer winners when numbers higher than 31 are drawn.
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Old 20th September 2018, 08:36 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
This might be boring

3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.
Not really, but there is something odd about those numbers.
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Old 21st September 2018, 04:55 AM   #5
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Top tips.
1. Do not play.
2. Pick a large number of numbers above 30. If a large number of such numbers are drawn then your prize could be bigger than normal as fewer people have picked these numbers.
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Old 21st September 2018, 05:01 AM   #6
Dr.Sid
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I remember reading article about what numbers are picked in local lottery (like 20 years ago), which has 6 of 49 numbers, in 5 columns (last cell is empty).
And the stats showed that people write it as a letter, first some numbers in the first row, then very little in second .. then some numbers around third and forth row, but getting less and less toward the end .. except lower right corner had another bunch of hot cells, like a signature.
It was based on wins only, so the pattern analysis couldn't be properly made, but it was certainly interesting.
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Old 21st September 2018, 05:30 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post

3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.

40 people won and shared by the way, which is the most by a country mile.

In the US, a lot of people seem to buy tickets with numbers in patterns. Back when I worked at a store that sold the lottery, people who wanted to play the daily three number or four number drawings, and wanted 123, 1234, 2468, or something similar, would usually have to buy them a week in advance to get them before they were sold out.
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Old 21st September 2018, 06:22 AM   #8
Roboramma
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
I remember reading article about what numbers are picked in local lottery (like 20 years ago), which has 6 of 49 numbers, in 5 columns (last cell is empty).
And the stats showed that people write it as a letter, first some numbers in the first row, then very little in second .. then some numbers around third and forth row, but getting less and less toward the end .. except lower right corner had another bunch of hot cells, like a signature.
It was based on wins only, so the pattern analysis couldn't be properly made, but it was certainly interesting.
I don't understand at all what you are saying here.
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Old 21st September 2018, 06:59 AM   #9
Dr.Sid
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I don't understand at all what you are saying here.
It is lottery where you pick your own numbers, by checking them in the ticket (6 out of 49).
The ticket has cells with individual numbers, the current version looks like this:

https://777cz.eu/wp-content/uploads/...C3%A1zenka.jpg

And the most picked numbers make pattern which looks like a letter. Greeting on the top left, some text in the middle, and farewell in the bottom right. At least that's what the old article said.

Last edited by Dr.Sid; 21st September 2018 at 07:01 AM.
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Old 21st September 2018, 07:09 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
This might be boring

If so I apologise

Probably the most common thing with lottery some people seem to not get is the chances of it being the numbers 1,2,3,4,5 are the same as any other group of numbers, and assume it is not possible.

This week ours was nearly the next best thing

3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.

40 people won and shared by the way, which is the most by a country mile.

I'm no psychologist, but would imagine it is because every one except 13 can be someones birth month and they are all under 31 so cover days as well.

So think it tends to show people still use birthdates to pick their numbers
As mentioned above, the most common selection is 1,2,3,4,5,6 (so it doesn't seem unlikely that a lot of people just choose a series of odd numbers) but of course, because it is just as likely to turn up than any other combination, you shouldn't pick those numbers because of how many others you will have to share your winnings with.

That said, this realization is what stopped me playing the lottery. For me, it was a nice illustration of just how unlikely any combination has of being picked.
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Old 21st September 2018, 07:12 AM   #11
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I won $1200 from a "pay cheque poker" game at a big job I was working on back in the 1980's ... After that i stopped buying any lottery tickets, and almost ALL gambling.

I still go to the casino every 3 or 4 years but just bring $20
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Old 21st September 2018, 07:17 AM   #12
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Lotteries are nice .. it's cheap, and the prices are huge. It's not likely to ruin you. You are not likely to win, but IMHO it's fun if you are in and you are watching the draw. The ratio of fun vs. price seems to me lot better than in casinos, which are mostly around 50:50 chance. If I'm lucky, I get double. To gain a lot, I have to risk a lot. With lotteries the risk is marginal, and the wins can be life changing. Well .. another questions is if for the better, but that's different topic.
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Old 21st September 2018, 12:18 PM   #13
dann
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
With lotteries the risk is marginal, and the wins can be life changing.

Do you make a living selling lottery tickets?!
The risk is marginal if you buy only one cheap lottery ticket. And the chance of winning any significant amount is infinitesimal, so why contrast the "huge" life-changing prizes if you win when you know with 99.99999....% certainty that you don't?
That's what all the lottery commercials do!

Quote:
the odds of winning the jackpot are 1:95,344,200.
Eurojackpot (Wikipedia)
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 21st September 2018 at 12:20 PM.
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Old 21st September 2018, 12:29 PM   #14
Dr.Sid
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Do you make a living selling lottery tickets?!
The risk is marginal if you buy only one cheap lottery ticket. And the chance of winning any significant amount is infinitesimal, so why contrast the "huge" life-changing prizes if you win when you know with 99.99999....% certainty that you don't?
That's what all the lottery commercials do!
The local lottery I was talking about has winning chance 1:14 million. Yes, it's little. But almost every week someone wins some high price. Jackpot streaks, where nobody wins the top price, so it goes to the next, are not very long. It is entirely possible to win.
And no, I don't sell it. I'm just saying that I like my chances more with lottery than in casino. Making $200 out of $100 just doesn't seem worth it. Winning $1.5M for $1 seems much more fun, even if the chance is near to zero.
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Old 21st September 2018, 03:21 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
I'm just saying that I like my chances more with lottery than in casino. Making $200 out of $100 just doesn't seem worth it. Winning $1.5M for $1 seems much more fun, even if the chance is near to zero.
I agree. I had the best poker game of my life and walked away with about 10-15 times what I put into it. (Second place in a tournament of about five to seven tables.) That is when I stopped paying to play poker.

I'll still play the lottery every now and again, although I don't think I have in over a year or so.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 02:45 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
The local lottery I was talking about has winning chance 1:14 million. Yes, it's little. But almost every week someone wins some high price. Jackpot streaks, where nobody wins the top price, so it goes to the next, are not very long. It is entirely possible to win.
The chance of someone winning is related not just to the chance of any individual winning, but also to the total number of people playing. If you had 10 times as many people playing it wouldn't alter your chances of winning at all, but it would change the length of time between anyone winning a jackpot. That suggests to me that your metric is flawed.

What's important isn't whether or not anyone wins, but what your chances of winning are. And 1/14,000,000 is very small, regardless of how many other people there are playing the game.

If you have some reasoning that suggests the price is worth that tiny chance of winning, it should be based on those two things (the price and the chance of winning) and not dependant on a third irrelevant quantity (the number of other people playing).


Quote:
And no, I don't sell it. I'm just saying that I like my chances more with lottery than in casino. Making $200 out of $100 just doesn't seem worth it. Winning $1.5M for $1 seems much more fun, even if the chance is near to zero.
Except that your chances of winning are very relevant to both of those games. If you had 99% chance of turning your $100 into $200 you'd probably think it was worth it. If you had a 1/10100 chance of winning the lottery you'd probably think it's not worth it. So clearly the probabilities are important.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 03:27 AM   #17
cullennz
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Not lottery but gambling and odds

I have an admission to make

I almost became a gambling tragedy.

My first ever experience with slot machines was when I was younger and at a pub waiting for someone and put 2 dollars in a slot machine, playing the lowest amount.

People around me were putting in 20 dollar notes.

There was a kind of cummulatitive jackpot thing that went off and I won $800

After that I used to spend $2 every time in a pub. Then a fiver. Won a bit. But obviously not more out than in.

I put one $20 in before I realised I was being a bit of an idiot and haven't gone near them ever since
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Old 22nd September 2018, 05:06 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
I almost became a gambling tragedy.

That's probably very far from becoming a gambling tragedy, but I know too little to calculate the odds!
I congratulate you on your choice, however!
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Old 22nd September 2018, 05:15 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
But almost every week someone wins some high price. (...) It is entirely (!) possible (!) to win.

Notice the tricks you're playing on yourself despite your knowledge of the facts!
Roboramma's "1/14,000,000" tells you how close to zero you are. In my book, it equals zero for all practical purposes.
That "every week someone (!) wins some high price," is what the lottery sellers tell you over and over to persuade you to buy more lottery tickets. It's entirely unlikely that that someone will ever be you.
At least, I can rest assured that that someone won't ever be me!
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 22nd September 2018 at 05:17 AM.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 06:02 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13

I will assume you can see the pattern here.

Yes, it's a pretty obvious one: all of those numbers are factors of 135,135, and they are the only factors of 135,135.

What puzzles me is why the people who bought that ticket were so devoted to the number 135 that they wrote it down twice and then used it to select their winning numbers.

The most logical possibility is that they're a group of 135-year olds in a retirement community and they were picking what they considered the most important factors in their lives, but the linked newspaper story doesn't make that clear so I'm only guessing.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 08:04 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Notice the tricks you're playing on yourself despite your knowledge of the facts!
Roboramma's "1/14,000,000" tells you how close to zero you are. In my book, it equals zero for all practical purposes.
That "every week someone (!) wins some high price," is what the lottery sellers tell you over and over to persuade you to buy more lottery tickets. It's entirely unlikely that that someone will ever be you.
At least, I can rest assured that that someone won't ever be me!
I never said it's likely I would win. I said someone wins, by which I meant, even if the chance is low, it is possible. And think how much you increase your chance by buying the ticket !
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Old 22nd September 2018, 08:10 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
The chance of someone winning is related not just to the chance of any individual winning, but also to the total number of people playing. If you had 10 times as many people playing it wouldn't alter your chances of winning at all, but it would change the length of time between anyone winning a jackpot. That suggests to me that your metric is flawed.
What metric ? I only meant that the chances are low, but not impossible. Nothing more.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
What's important isn't whether or not anyone wins, but what your chances of winning are. And 1/14,000,000 is very small, regardless of how many other people there are playing the game.

If you have some reasoning that suggests the price is worth that tiny chance of winning, it should be based on those two things (the price and the chance of winning) and not dependant on a third irrelevant quantity (the number of other people playing).
I never said anything like there is third relevant quantity.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Except that your chances of winning are very relevant to both of those games. If you had 99% chance of turning your $100 into $200 you'd probably think it was worth it. If you had a 1/10100 chance of winning the lottery you'd probably think it's not worth it. So clearly the probabilities are important.
I wasn't talking about 'worth it' as in financial term. Of course, all those games are designed NOT to generate income for players, on average. I was talking about the effect on your life. The attractiveness of the price is different. Extra $100 is nothing compared to extra $1.5M. Also the price of the game is lower. It's lot harder to ruin yourself on $1 lottery (certainly not impossible of course).
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Old 22nd September 2018, 05:47 PM   #23
Roboramma
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
What metric ? I only meant that the chances are low, but not impossible. Nothing more.
The one you used: you said

"But almost every week someone wins some high price. Jackpot streaks, where nobody wins the top price, so it goes to the next, are not very long."
Which is entirely irrelevant to whether or not it's worthwhile for you to play, for the reasons I outlined in my previous post.

Quote:
I never said anything like there is third relevant quantity.
You implicitly included that third quantity in your analysis.



Quote:
I wasn't talking about 'worth it' as in financial term.
You need to be talking about worth it in some terms. So what are those terms?

Quote:
Of course, all those games are designed NOT to generate income for players, on average. I was talking about the effect on your life.
So far you've only mentioned the effect on your life in financial terms, for instance:
Quote:
The attractiveness of the price is different. Extra $100 is nothing compared to extra $1.5M. Also the price of the game is lower. It's lot harder to ruin yourself on $1 lottery (certainly not impossible of course).
You're just talking about dollar values. Is there something else you thought changed things?

I haven't assumed some linear value to money such that the first dollar won is equal to the millionth dollar won, but you also haven't given are argument for a different scale that you're working from. Whatever that scale is the first $100 isn't nothing.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 08:52 PM   #24
Dr.Sid
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
The one you used: you said

"But almost every week someone wins some high price. Jackpot streaks, where nobody wins the top price, so it goes to the next, are not very long."
Which is entirely irrelevant to whether or not it's worthwhile for you to play, for the reasons I outlined in my previous post.
I never said it is relevant. Not sure what do you mean by 'worthwile for you to play' though.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
You implicitly included that third quantity in your analysis.
I did no such things. You are overthinking it.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
You need to be talking about worth it in some terms. So what are those terms?

So far you've only mentioned the effect on your life in financial terms, for instance:

You're just talking about dollar values. Is there something else you thought changed things?

I haven't assumed some linear value to money such that the first dollar won is equal to the millionth dollar won, but you also haven't given are argument for a different scale that you're working from. Whatever that scale is the first $100 isn't nothing.
I was talking about entertainment. Fun. Like in "is this movie worth watching ?". Of course you won't make money on watching movie, but it still can be worth it. And I just stated my personal opinion. I don't see appeal in casino games, while I do see some appeal in lotteries, some of them at least.

Of course, English is not my native language and expressing thoughts exactly can be hard, but you seem to miss my points in your desire to nitpick.
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Old 22nd September 2018, 09:40 PM   #25
Roboramma
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
I never said it is relevant.
If it wasn't relevant, why did you mention it?

Quote:
Not sure what do you mean by 'worthwile for you to play' though.
Define worthwhile however you like. You are talking about something, right? You want to play the lottery for some reason, ie. you think it's worth playing. That can be, as you say below, because it's fun or for any other number of reasons. You wrote a post talking about that.

It's quite possible that you didn't fully explain the reasoning, but I found that the reasoning that you did post to be flawed. That's all.

Quote:
I did no such things. You are overthinking it.
You quite clearly did, though maybe it wasn't intentional. Feel free to reread your post.



Quote:
I was talking about entertainment. Fun. Like in "is this movie worth watching ?". Of course you won't make money on watching movie, but it still can be worth it. And I just stated my personal opinion. I don't see appeal in casino games, while I do see some appeal in lotteries, some of them at least.
That's fine, if you find it fun and worth the price, play. I have no problem with that.

The fact that someone wins every week doesn't demonstrate anything with relation to that, and it was your inclusion of that in your reasoning that I'm objecting to.

Quote:
Of course, English is not my native language and expressing thoughts exactly can be hard, but you seem to miss my points in your desire to nitpick.
If I'm nitpicking something meaningless, sorry. I am just trying to make clear one issue that I do think is meaningful with respect to the lottery: the fact that someone wins isn't a good reason to think the lottery is worth playing, no matter what "worth playing" means or is based on.
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Old 23rd September 2018, 07:49 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
If I'm nitpicking something meaningless, sorry. I am just trying to make clear one issue that I do think is meaningful with respect to the lottery: the fact that someone wins isn't a good reason to think the lottery is worth playing, no matter what "worth playing" means or is based on.
Of course it depends on what "worth playing" is based on. For example for the company running the lottery it's most important that people do win time to time. And for me it adds to the thrill, and the thrill is the fun. If the chances were 1:14 billion, nobody would win in a year, and it would become boring.

Anyway .. if you are hungry for silly probability claims, I have one. There is special working system, how to always make money on games like this. It works on all pure probability games. Like lotteries, roulette and so on. It's based on math of course, and it's been confirmed in real life countless times. It made some people billionaires. It works like this: you own the casino.
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Old 23rd September 2018, 08:14 AM   #27
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I guess for me the fact that it's 1/14million means that the odds are already low enough that it's boring, so I don't really see how the fact that other people win all the time adds to the excitement. I mean, if it were 1/14 billion but you had one thousand times as many people playing, would you find it exciting then?

But that's probably just psychology, if you enjoy playing it I don't have an issue with that.
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Old 23rd September 2018, 08:43 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
There is special working system, how to always make money on games like this. It works on all pure probability games. Like lotteries, roulette and so on. It's based on math of course, and it's been confirmed in real life countless times. It made some people billionaires. It works like this: you own the casino.

Even that system doesn't always work!

Quote:
Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts, lost money every year from 1995 until it went bankrupt in 2004 -- more than $600 million in total losses.
Donald Trump and the art of losing money (CNN, Oct. 2, 2016)
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Old 23rd September 2018, 09:07 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Even that system doesn't always work!
Well even best systems can be implemented wrong, some people just have special talents
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Old 24th September 2018, 01:26 PM   #30
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A friend of ours won the state lottery (mid 8 figures and selected the 20 year payout) some decades ago when she was quite young. Years later she was my wife's colleague and close friend for about 10 years when it came up indirectly in conversation. The friend just assumed my wife knew or she had told her some time in the past. Surprisingly, she lives a pretty normal life with a regular job paying 60k or so. She put it gradually into real estate and stocks. Smart woman. What I find most interesting is that it didn't seem to have effected her career. For that matter it isn't even clear anyone there even knew. And this state requires public disclosure of winners and hers was in all the state newspapers and easily found on the web. However, it was many years before she got out of college and started working with my wife.
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Old 24th September 2018, 05:07 PM   #31
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I have told you guys how I won on the lottery, but being skeptics you don't believe me.
You have to develop telepathy and tune in to a spirit guide who can see into the future, and get them to give you the numbers. I did this once but I only got five numbers.
The spirit world allowed me special dispensation to win enough to buy a computer.
But normally they will not do this as it is bad karma, and that is why I can't win big.
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Old 25th September 2018, 12:00 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have told you guys how I won on the lottery, but being skeptics capable of rational thought and having a basic understanding of the laws of probability you don't believe me.
FTFY.
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Old 25th September 2018, 12:23 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
I'm no psychologist, but would imagine it is because every one except 13 can be someones birth month and they are all under 31 so cover days as well.

So think it tends to show people still use birthdates to pick their numbers
I think you have made an error in your reasoning. If it were simply birthday picking, it would not be the most widely-split jackpot in the lottery’s history. I’m sure many, many other winning draws all had Numbers less than 31, but did not split as widely.

I’d love to survey the winners to determine how many thought of this particular series before filling out the playcard and how many looked at the playcard and simply made a pattern.
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Old 25th September 2018, 12:24 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Armitage72 View Post
In the US, a lot of people seem to buy tickets with numbers in patterns. Back when I worked at a store that sold the lottery, people who wanted to play the daily three number or four number drawings, and wanted 123, 1234, 2468, or something similar, would usually have to buy them a week in advance to get them before they were sold out.
What are you talking about? Why would they have to wait a week?
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Old 25th September 2018, 12:29 AM   #35
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I do look at state lotteries with pick three games as a great argument for libertarianism. In the old days when organized crime ran the numbers racquet, they would pay between 600:1 and 750:1 (depending on city and neighborhood).

Now that the government has a monopoly on it, they pay 500:1.
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