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Which gives me a better chance of winning a lottery?

Topic closed. 117 replies. Last post 9 years ago by time*treat.

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RJOh's avatar - chipmunk
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Posted: February 21, 2008, 11:01 pm - IP Logged

Since nobody won the jackpot on Tuesday, the answer to obvious; had you bought $100 worth of tickets instead of buying $50 in 2 draws, your chances of winning was zero.

You assume since no one won the jackpot, everyone who played was a losers.  There were 15 second tier winners of $250,000 and 85 third tier winners of $10,000 which wouldn't have been bad for someone buying $50-$100 worth of tickets

 * you don't need to buy more tickets, just buy a winning ticket * 
   
             Evil Looking       

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    Posted: February 22, 2008, 1:15 am - IP Logged

    The ratio of the number of drawings that produce no winner to the number of drawings that produe a winner or winners absolutely proves that the reduction of lottery odds is a myth.

    Would you please be kind enough to explain that to those of us who aren't all that good at math?

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      Posted: February 22, 2008, 1:20 am - IP Logged

      I think I found the perfect example of the misleading aspects of this whole thing.

      Keeping it simple.

      0-9 has 10 possibilities, right?

      I purchase one ticket, let's say I pick 0......1:10

      I purchase 2 tickets, let's say I pick 0, and 1.......2:5

      When people see the 5, they think Ooohhh, now I only have to contend with only 5 possiblities out there. But we all know that's not true. There are still 8 numbers to contend with, which are 2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9.

      Somebody please tell me I'm wrong, or am I going crazy?

      "I purchase 2 tickets, let's say I pick 0, and 1.......2:5"

      That one is wrong. You have 2 chances out of 10 possibilities, so it's 2 in 10. That simplifies to 1 in 5.

      "Whenpeople see the5, they think Ooohhh, now I only have to contend withonly 5possiblities out there. But we all know that's not true"

      You're  obviously right about people not understanding it, butit's also a  matter of perspective.  As long as you'veexpressed the odds as 1in 5, you are effectively looking at 5possibilities, where you  win with one of them and lose with theother 4.  You've got  tickets that cover 20%  of thepossibilities, and you don't have  tickets for the remaining 80%.Think about it like this:
        Possibility   1.  The winning number is 0 or 1:   you win
        Possibility   2.  The winning number is 2 or 3 :  you lose
        Possibility   3.  The winning number is 4 or 5 :  you lose
        Possibility   4.  The winning number is 6 or 7 :  you lose
        Possibility   5.  The winning number is 8 or 9 :  you lose
      That could be expanded to cover all 10 numbers one at a time, butthe  ratio is the same whether you express it as  1 in 5 or 2in 10. There's a 20% chance of winning and an 80% chance of losing.

      Those who don't understand that perspective will look at the total number of combinations that result in losing, and focus onthat  instead of the ratio between the combinations that you'vecovered and  the combinations you haven't covered. Whether theyunderstand the math  or not, anyone who agrees that buying 2tickets in your example makes  you twice as likely to win comparedto one ticket should be able to see  that the same ratio willapply no matter how many possibilities there  are. Twice as manychances makes you twice as likely to win. 

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        Posted: February 22, 2008, 1:27 am - IP Logged

        Pac, first I have to say I totally agree with you about smart people & bad math.  Take mortgages for example.  A few years ago I worked 2 weeks for a broker who was pushing the interest only loans and the 1% Option ARMs.  I left during training.  People thought that 4% increasing to 5% was 1%, not 25%.  Yes, the rate only increases by 1%, but the payment still goes up 25%. (doesn't it?)   I tried to use a c**ktail as an example.  If you have a drink with 10% alcohol and another drink with 20% alcohol, that drink is twice as potent as the other, not 10%.  When I once bought tooth bleach on the internet, it had 22% peroxide instead of the 15% I was using.  OMG! I couldn't drink orange juice or even brush my teeth for a week!  Why? Because this formula was 40% stronger!   Still, giving all these examples to people didn't seem to matter....and the broker had a "you can't fix stupid" attitude, which isn't the way I operate.  Yet people finance cars all the time when they are very upside down.  You can try to explain that they owe much more than the car is worth, so they aren't paying $20,000 for the new car, but really $25,000 and they look at you with a blank stare.  Do you think the finance manager cares?  I've mentioned before that I worked with a woman who thought .4 at the market was a quarter of a pound, although that's a little too extreme. Still, many of these people are successful, intelligent people who are good at something else. 

        Not to go too far off on a tangent, but "has it been raining?" is just a rhetorical question in many instances to break the ice or to start up a conversation IMHO. 

        In the past you've been one of the people who doesn't acceptthat  having two tickets makes you twice as likely to win, soplease explain  this to me:

         "If you have a drink with 10% alcohol and another drink with 20% alcohol, that drink is twice as potent as the other"

        I'm  sure Coin Toss is busy thinking, "but there's still 80% ofit that  isn't alcohol".  As long as you so easily recognizethat twice as  much alcohol makes the drink twice as strong, canyou explain why it  wouldn't seem obvious that having twice asmany tickets for the lottery  would make you twice as likely towin? I honestly don't think itrequires understanding the math. I reallythink that  for the most  part the problem is that people usefaulty math to convince themselves  that the intuitive (andcorrect) answer is wrong.

        As for somebody  paying $1 million in cash  for a houseand selling in a few years  for $1.5 million, that's an excellentexample of why paying cash may  not be the best plan. If they hadtaken a mortgage and put down 20% they would have made the  sameprofit on a much smaller investment. They could have used the other 800grand to make the same half million on 3 other houses. Even if theyspent all of the last 200 grand making the monthly payments they wouldstill have had a profit of $1.8 million instead of .5 million. CoinToss keeps referring to paying for a  house 3 times, butapparently doesn't recognize the potential value of the cash he wantsto pay with.  Elsewhere (don't recall if it's this thread oranother  one) I think  somebody mentioned Donald Trump.Leveraging his assets to finance more  assets that  increasedin value is exactly how he got rich. If he  had paid cash based onCoin Toss' advice he'd be just another bad  landlord in NYC. Ofcourse financing properties that lost value is a  large part ofhow he became poor.

          justxploring's avatar - villiarna
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          Posted: February 22, 2008, 2:11 am - IP Logged

          KY Floyd - first I'll answer the mortgage question.  You wrote..."for a houseand selling in a few years " and in my last post one word was missing, since I wrote "less than two years." I can't blame you if I made a typo, but I'm not sure your answer would have been any different.  To the best of my knowledge, not many lending institutions give great rates for flips, if they lend money for them at all, but I only know about the company I mentioned in which I trained (which didn't offer them.)  Also I'm not familiar with jumbo loans for that kind of money.  Still, since these investors were not living in the home or using it as a vacation home, but only purchasing it for capital gain, the type of home mortgage would not be for personal use, and those are often different rates & terms.  One thing I know is the man who bought the house I now rent and the one next door paid cash and he's a multi-millionaire, so there must be something to what Coin Toss is saying.  I'm sure wealthy people use many resources of which I am not aware. 

          Next you ask "As long as you so easily recognizethat twice as  much alcohol makes the drink twice as strong, canyou explain why it  wouldn't seem obvious that having twice asmany tickets for the lottery  would make you twice as likely towin?"

          I never said that ---  you are twisting my words.  I've always said that 1 ticket gives you 1 chance and 2 tickets gives you 2 chances, etc.   You aren't removing the numbers you bet after you buy a ticket, but betting on the same 175 million combinations.  So each ticket is like playing a new game and just as much chance of winning as the other. Yes, you definitely have more of a chance at winning and are twice as likely to win with 2 plays than 1.  That is NOT the same as cutting the odds in half each time you buy another ticket.

          You keep saying I'm bad in math.  Maybe it's not that I'm bad in math, maybe it's that you are bad at analytical thinking.   

            Coin Toss's avatar - shape barbed.jpg
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            Posted: February 22, 2008, 2:32 am - IP Logged

            KY Floyd

            "I'm  sure Coin Toss is busy thinking, "but there's still 80% ofitthat  isn't alcohol".  As long as you so easily recognizethat twice as much alcohol makes the drink twice as strong, canyou explain why it wouldn't seem obvious that having twice asmany tickets for the lottery would make you twice as likely towin? I honestly don't think itrequiresunderstanding the math. I reallythink that  for the most  part theproblem is that people usefaulty math to convince themselves  that theintuitive (andcorrect) answer is wrong."

            No, Coin Toss is just thinking how badly people want to beleive that in an entity where the odds against winning a jakcpot are over 175,000,000 to one they can still make themselves "twice as likely to win".  EACH TICKET, THAT IS EACH $1, EACH LINE OF NUMBERS IS A STAND ALONE AFFAIR OF CHANCES OF 1 IN 175,000,000.

            THERE IS ONE AND ONLY ONE ONLY ONE SET OF WINNING NUMBERS DRAWN. The only ways these theories propsed here would work is if there was a set drawn for each dollar spent. 

            If any of these peobabilities theories propsed here weRe true, there would have to be jackpot winners every draw. 

            [/story]. You either get it or you don't.  

             
            As for somebody  paying $1 million in cash  for a houseand sellingin a few years  for $1.5 million, that's an excellentexample of whypaying cash may  not be the best plan. If they had taken a mortgage andput down 20% they would have made the  sameprofit on a much smallerinvestment. They could have used the other 800grand to make the samehalf million on 3 other houses.

            A real estate wheeler dealer would do that, a person sharp with money would do that. But human nature says the average person would put the 20% down on the first house and never invest the rest. (See Justxplorings remarks in her post about payments).

            You're also assuming buyers and thus assuming that our investor who takes on a mortgage for the first house isn't going to be strapped with another one, two, or three mortgages until buyers show up.  

            Well, maybe some here would "invest" it in lottery tickets, after all, if the belief is every $100 spent reduces the odds by a power of 100, why $800,000 would guarantee a win for the player, a lock! My oh my, how do the lotteries stay in business?

            Those who run the lotteries love it when players look for consistency in something that's designed not to have any.

            Lep

            There is one and only one 'proven' system, and that is to book the action. No matter the game, let the players pick their own losers.

              time*treat's avatar - radar

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              Posted: February 22, 2008, 3:13 am - IP Logged

              <--- wonders if, on some real-estate forum, there is a heated debate being waged regarding the lottery.Ponder

              In neo-conned Amerika, bank robs you.
              Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms should be the name of a convenience store, not a govnoment agency.

                justxploring's avatar - villiarna
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                Posted: February 22, 2008, 4:10 am - IP Logged

                Coin Toss wrote (See Justxplorings remarks in her post about payments). 

                Sorry, Coin Toss - I edited my post because it was so long and deleted those remarks!  It's nice to know someone pays attention to them.  I'll try to remember what I wrote.  I've worked as a loan officer for a while. What I noticed is that many people finance cars, furniture and buy lots of items on credit cards and only seem to care about one thing..."the monthly payment" and whether or not it will fit into their budget.  They often don't consider the amount of interest or if they will be paying for the product many times over by financing it.  Some people finance a car for 60 months and then trade it in for a new one in 2 years, financing the new one for 72 months.  As long as they can keep the payment at a certain level, they don't seem to care. 

                Well, that's it for me!   

                  justxploring's avatar - villiarna
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                  Posted: February 22, 2008, 4:12 am - IP Logged

                  <--- wonders if, on some real-estate forum, there is a heated debate being waged regarding the lottery.Ponder

                  Heated debate?  You mean you can't feel the love?

                  Goodnight! 

                    Coin Toss's avatar - shape barbed.jpg
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                    Posted: February 22, 2008, 3:02 pm - IP Logged

                    <--- wonders if, on some real-estate forum, there is a heated debate being waged regarding the lottery.Ponder

                    Oh there propbably is, but for a really heated discussion go to a Christian discussion board and bring up:

                    Predestination vs Free Will

                    The Pope

                    Mary

                    Infant or adult baptism, or is baptism necessary?

                    Tithing, and thithing based on gross or net!

                    Why two creation stories in Genesis?

                    There's many more, but that would trigger quite a number of threads and posts, believe me!

                    _______________________________

                    Everyone, re: reduction of odds, try this.

                    Just get a calculater, take 175,711,536 and keep dividing by 100. See how quickly you get it down to single digits or a decimal, and then try to explain to those of us who don't buy this concept that playing series of 100 combinations would get you to the same place. 

                    Ex:

                    Let's say the odds were 1,000,0000 to one in a game.

                    1,000,000 / 100 = 10,000

                    100,000/ 100 = 100

                    100 / 100 = 1

                    Gee, it only took three times of playing 100 tickets to make it an even money bet.

                    AND THAT'S WHY THE WHOLE CONCEPT IS FLAWED, IT SIMPLY ISN'T TRUE.  

                    Those who run the lotteries love it when players look for consistency in something that's designed not to have any.

                    Lep

                    There is one and only one 'proven' system, and that is to book the action. No matter the game, let the players pick their own losers.

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                      Posted: February 22, 2008, 3:26 pm - IP Logged

                      You assume since no one won the jackpot, everyone who played was a losers.  There were 15 second tier winners of $250,000 and 85 third tier winners of $10,000 which wouldn't have been bad for someone buying $50-$100 worth of tickets

                      The majority of this discussion has been about reducing the odds of $175 million to 1 and not about reducing the odds of winning more than they spent.

                      I assumed "a better chance of winning" meant a better chance of hitting the jackpot buying 100 QPs in 1 drawing or 50 QPs in 2 drawings. If "winning" means 2 bucks, we can guarantee that by playing all the mega balls for $46. If "winning" means more than they spend, they would have to match at least 4 + 0 or 3 + 1.

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                        Posted: February 22, 2008, 3:31 pm - IP Logged

                        <--- wonders if, on some real-estate forum, there is a heated debate being waged regarding the lottery.Ponder

                        ROFL!

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                          Posted: February 22, 2008, 3:37 pm - IP Logged

                          Oh there propbably is, but for a really heated discussion go to a Christian discussion board and bring up:

                          Predestination vs Free Will

                          The Pope

                          Mary

                          Infant or adult baptism, or is baptism necessary?

                          Tithing, and thithing based on gross or net!

                          Why two creation stories in Genesis?

                          There's many more, but that would trigger quite a number of threads and posts, believe me!

                          _______________________________

                          Everyone, re: reduction of odds, try this.

                          Just get a calculater, take 175,711,536 and keep dividing by 100. See how quickly you get it down to single digits or a decimal, and then try to explain to those of us who don't buy this concept that playing series of 100 combinations would get you to the same place. 

                          Ex:

                          Let's say the odds were 1,000,0000 to one in a game.

                          1,000,000 / 100 = 10,000

                          100,000/ 100 = 100

                          100 / 100 = 1

                          Gee, it only took three times of playing 100 tickets to make it an even money bet.

                          AND THAT'S WHY THE WHOLE CONCEPT IS FLAWED, IT SIMPLY ISN'T TRUE.  

                          "Oh there propbably is, but for a really heated discussion go to a Christian discussion board"

                          The New Testament has a Trinity; does that mean our chances of getting to Heaven are multiplied by 3?

                          Hiding Behind Computer

                            benmas's avatar - waveform
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                            Posted: February 22, 2008, 4:40 pm - IP Logged

                            "Oh there propbably is, but for a really heated discussion go to a Christian discussion board"

                            The New Testament has a Trinity; does that mean our chances of getting to Heaven are multiplied by 3?

                            Hiding Behind Computer

                            ^^^^^^^^haha...^^^^^^^^^6

                            -----------------------------------

                            Just get a calculater, take 175,711,536 and keep dividing by 100. See how quickly you get it down to single digits or a decimal, and then try to explain to those of us who don't buy this concept that playing series of 100 combinations would get you to the same place. 

                            Ex:

                            Let's say the odds were 1,000,0000 to one in a game.

                            1,000,000 / 100 = 10,000

                            100,000/ 100 = 100

                            100 / 100 = 1

                            Gee, it only took three times of playing 100 tickets to make it an even money bet.

                            AND THAT'S WHY THE WHOLE CONCEPT IS FLAWED, IT SIMPLY ISN'T TRUE.

                            --------------------------------------

                            The above is a perfect example why you DONT get it coin toss...to make it an even money bet you have to put up $1,000,000...

                            1,000,000:1,000,000 =1         not 100:100<<<this derivation is illogical

                            you are saying that once you cut that million by 100 you take the 100,000 and keep dividing ..NO..you cannot take the 100,000 and go from there...you always take the 1,000,000 (the original odds)...because thats what you are trying to beat...not the whatever is left after dividing in your grossly incorrect example...

                            The example you gave above (playing a series of $100) would work like below and not the way you said in 3 shots...As you will see it will take much more shots to get to 1 or (even)

                            1,000,000 divide by 100=100,000

                            1,000,000 divide by 200=5,000

                            1,000,000 divide by 300=3,333......

                            1,000,000 divide by 500=2000..

                             ------ ------- -------------- by continuing same in increments of 100

                            1,000,000 divide by 5,000=200   <<< this is the 500th shot

                            1,000,000 divide by 50,000=20

                            1,000,000 divide by 100,000=10 (this means you have a 1 in 10 shot of winning if you buy one hundred thousand tickets assuming no doubles)

                            1,000,000 divide by 1,000,000=1 <<<this is the 10,000th shot with the $100 which is exactly given by the odds calculator which translated to playing the MEGA with $100 gives 175,000,000:100=1,750,000 which furthermore means you would have to play 1,750,000 more times in the same draw with $100 to catch up theoritically..as you can see no one can try one million.75 times to buy tickets each time with one hundred dollars...

                            Another factual example: The advertised odds of winning jackpot for PA MAtch 6 are

                            1:4,661,272.3 (you get 3 lines for $2) Actually there are 13,983,816 total combos...so it is correct to give the odds like that (divided by three)..the lottery is not lying to the public...they are presenting it that way becasue it is a smaller number..the smaller number is correct mathematically but it doesnt translate to being easier to win..they use this practice in order to make it seem easier becasue they give you smaller number to look at...

                            AT the end of the day i dont really care what the odds say...in order to win you have to be lucky... Type

                              Coin Toss's avatar - shape barbed.jpg
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                              Posted: February 22, 2008, 5:23 pm - IP Logged

                              benmas

                              Above you say:

                               "The above is a perfect example why you DONT get it coin toss...to make it an even money bet you have to put up $1,000,000..."

                              THAT is exactly right and that has been my point all along.  Earlier in this very thread you took the Mega Millions jackpot odds of 175, 711, 536 and told us that playing $100 reduced that to 1,757,115 (read your own post). 

                              Putting up $1 million in the example of a game with odss of a 1 million to one is a far, far cry from putting up $100 three times.

                              In the example I posted with a game of 1,000,000 to one odds, dividing them by 100  three times implies playing 100 three times would take it to an even money bet. Of course it doesn't.  

                              THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO REVERSE SCIENTIFIC NOTATION POSWER OF TENS, HUNDREDS, OR THOUSANDS THAT GOES ON WITH LOTTERIES.

                              This

                              "1:4,661,272.3(you get 3 lines for $2) Actually there are 13,983,816 totalcombos...so it is correct to give the odds like that (divided bythree)..the lottery is not lying to the public.."

                              is pure hype presented to the schmuck public by the lottery.

                              I told you in a previous post that only system seller and ticket sellers promote this tripe.  

                              Go back to the calculator example and divide 13,983,816 by 3 ( 3 lines) and via that method tell me how many $2 bets it says you'd make before you've reduced the odds to nothing.

                              dividing by 3 gets it down to .0974556 in 15 steps. Gee, 15 X $2  = $30 and for a mere $30 we can take 13.9 millions odds against us down to .097.  

                              If you really think a $30 bet or $100 or $1000 against any lottery does what it says you think it does, and you really fall for the odds posted by the lottery, I don't know what else to tell you, other than maybe Steve Player is looking for someone to write sales letters.

                              Buono Fortuna 

                              Those who run the lotteries love it when players look for consistency in something that's designed not to have any.

                              Lep

                              There is one and only one 'proven' system, and that is to book the action. No matter the game, let the players pick their own losers.