United States Member #171734 January 11, 2016 127 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 1:31 pm - IP Logged

The government didn't invent probability theory

All combinations have an equal probability of winning, there are no good or bad combinations. All combinations are "bad" in the sense that they only have a 1 in 292 million chance of winning.

Intuition is a poor substitute for math and scientific principles.

70% of all jackpot winners had Quick Pick tickets, right in line with the percentage of Quick Pick tickets sold.

Let's try a thought exercise. There is a roulette wheel that has no 0 or 00 so the house has no edge. Every spin has a 1 in 2 chance of coming up red. You watch it for 1000 spins and note that 550 were black and 450 were red or 45% were red. Since you know probability theory says over a large number of spins that percentage will trend towards 50% you think betting red would be a better bet. In fact I can see the future and I tell you that over the next 10,000 spins the average over the 11,000 spins will be 48% red. Thinking intuitively you say to yourself, betting red is a sure thing!

But is that true?

48% red over 11,000 spins is 5280 red minus the 450 that already occurred means red comes up 4830 times over the next 10,000 spins and betting red would be a loser.

Intuition, guessing, gut feelings are no substitute for just doing the math. In fact you can proceed to keep losing money betting red FOREVER and at the same time the percentage red can keep getting closer and closer to 50%.

Conclusion, you can't predict the roulette wheel (unless it is faulty, and there are sufficient defects to overcome the house odds and you can observe it long enough to figure out what the defect is and you can actually confirm that it is defective). With Powerball there are too few drawings to detect any problems with the drawing mechanism and the house odds are so enormously against you that unless it was a really serious flaw (like the red #19 ball was 80% the size and twice as heavy as all the other balls) it simply wouldn't be enough to swing things your way.

But don't let me stop anyone from having fun buying tickets, hoping and dreaming. Just be realistic and don't complain when you lose most of your money every week.

United States Member #171734 January 11, 2016 127 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 1:57 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by gavin256 on January 15, 2016

You gave an example of just ONE state, LOL. One out of many many states that do very poorly. One state doesn't prove anything. Thanks.

So they rig the lottery but don't do it in Kansas?

Look at the results from ANY state. You'll get the same answer just not the one you are looking for.

There are no states that "do poorly", they all generate winning tickets at a rate of close to the expected 1 in 24.87

You are merely trying to claim something is wrong because Vermont hasn't had a Powerball jackpot winner because, apparently, you think that states should each have the same number of jackpot winners over time even though the number of tickets sold in each state varies dramatically. The probability of a state having a jackpot winner for a particular drawing is directly proportional to the number of tickets sold in that state. If they sell only one ticket they only have a 1 chance in 292 million of having a jackpot winner. If California sells 1 billion tickets for the same drawing there is a greater than 90% chance that California will have 1 or more jackpot winners. Why is that evidence that something isn't "fair"? Each of the people who bought one of those 1 billion tickets in California only has a 1 in 292 billion chance for each of their tickets as well, same as that one ticket buyer in Vermont.

United States Member #171734 January 11, 2016 127 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 2:05 pm - IP Logged

States don't win jackpots, people do.

So it doesn't matter in the slightest to people in Vermont whether or not there has been a winner in Vermont before. They still have the same probability of winning as anyone who buys a ticket in California or Florida or West Virginia, 1 in 292 million.

You might be saying there is a perception problem and I don't disagree, as long as people incorrectly think you have a better chance of winning if you buy a ticket in California they might be disinclined to buy a ticket in Vermont. They would be wrong and educating them is the answer. The first step being letting them know that they aren't going to win no matter where they buy a ticket because the odds are 1 in 292 million against them.

There is nothing to look at regarding how Quick Picks "are printed", they are random combinations of numbers and have no higher or lower likelyhood of winning than any other combination of numbers.

I do agree that the Powerball essentially starves the small prizes to build the large jackpot. But you can't have it both ways, more small prizes equals slower growing jackpots and big jackpots are what drive ticket sales. If you want a contest that you have a better than 1 in 25 chance of having a winning ticket find a different game, some of the scratcher games have a lot more small prizes.

United States Member #171734 January 11, 2016 127 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 2:16 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by crazyjaney on January 15, 2016

I'm not convinced. I need to see a full analysis of jackpot winners via quick pick versus people that self picked numbers. And yeah I do think that the terminals can be programmed to have bias. The terminals do not need the ability to be linked state to state to program bias. It is the same reason why I don't play games where the computer picks the numbers- here in ga that would be all or nothing and keno. Ball drop games only. Much harder to be tampered with.

Powerball reports that 70% of jackpot winners had quick pick tickets, feel free to go back and find something different.

What sort of "bias" could a quick pick ticket have? There are no better or worse sets of numbers. There could be an excess of duplicates but that only impacts the jackpot and could result in more jackpot rollovers than expected. But every ticket it generated would still have exactly the same 1 in 292 million chance of winning.

Think about this for a moment, what if the Quick Pick tickets never used 69 because of a programming error. Would you claim that reduces your chance of winning the jackpot if you buy a Quick Pick ticket? You would be mistaken.

Even more interesting, if you pick your own numbers you are MORE likely to generate a duplicate ticket with other people, probably many other people. You are bad at picking random numbers and, as I said above, one of the impacts of non-random picks is more duplicate tickets and more jackpot rollovers. Only random picks minimize duplicates. But don't worry, even your non-random pick has the same 1 in 292 million chance of winning. No greater, no less.

Texas United States Member #55889 October 23, 2007 5611 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 2:38 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by dddwww on January 15, 2016

Powerball reports that 70% of jackpot winners had quick pick tickets, feel free to go back and find something different.

What sort of "bias" could a quick pick ticket have? There are no better or worse sets of numbers. There could be an excess of duplicates but that only impacts the jackpot and could result in more jackpot rollovers than expected. But every ticket it generated would still have exactly the same 1 in 292 million chance of winning.

Think about this for a moment, what if the Quick Pick tickets never used 69 because of a programming error. Would you claim that reduces your chance of winning the jackpot if you buy a Quick Pick ticket? You would be mistaken.

Even more interesting, if you pick your own numbers you are MORE likely to generate a duplicate ticket with other people, probably many other people. You are bad at picking random numbers and, as I said above, one of the impacts of non-random picks is more duplicate tickets and more jackpot rollovers. Only random picks minimize duplicates. But don't worry, even your non-random pick has the same 1 in 292 million chance of winning. No greater, no less.

Very well explained.

Unfortunately there are those who will remain convinced lotteries are all rigged and no amount of math or reasoning will convince them otherwise.

United States Member #162003 December 18, 2014 43 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 6:26 pm - IP Logged

It doesn't matter what any sort of "math" or "reasoning" anyone comes up with. These drawings reek to high he1l and it will have ramifications on future play. That's all that needs to be said. Either give players more of a chance to win smaller to medium prizes or suffer the consequences. Why do you think so many young people are not interested in playing the lottery? Maybe they are smart enough and can do the "math" that you speak of and realize they have literally no chance of winning anything. If you live in a state that hasn't won a jackpot for years and years, the fact is that it is going to discourage you from playing. Nuff said.

PA United States Member #22983 October 6, 2005 2226 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 6:57 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by gavin256 on January 14, 2016

For all those saying the chance's are the same for every single ticket that is bought, you need help. I'm guessing you believe everything that the government tells you too? I thought so. I'm also guessing you are either a liberal and/or from a liberal state? Pretty typical. The fact is that not every ticket has the same chances to win. Think about the number generators at the terminals. Do you think enough bad combinations get cycled through in very low powerball sales states to even get close to printing the winner? I for one have bought many quick pick tickets for years and years and never won anything. Then I started picking my own numbers and started winning all the time. If these lotteries are so random, then why am I able to win with picking my own numbers but not quick picks? Everything is not an even chance.

You won what? Smaller prizes? So have I, but I won more playing QP's on jackpot games then using my own numbers. I won more on smaller games playing my own numbers. But I also play more QP's on bigger games, and play my own numbers more on smaller games. So that is probability and odds for you. Any ticket can win yes, but when the bulk of the combinations are played in one state they have a much better chance. But it is not 100% still they just have more plays and better odds. Way more chances. Let's not forget TN won and beat the odds twice now with this matrix. So yeah any ticket can win.

PA United States Member #22983 October 6, 2005 2226 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 7:04 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by crazyjaney on January 14, 2016

Think about a quick pick for a minute... When you use a quick pick you are letting the house pick your bet for you. Do you think they are going to give you an optimal combination or a sub optimal piece of crap which furthers their house edge? This a business after all lol.

On the other hand I got a QP that I thought was "crap" for the Cash 5 and ended up matching 4 out of 5 and one number off from $1.6 million. I would have never played that combo though. Winning numbers were 07 08 09 14 30 QP was 05 07 08 09 30. So that QP got me at least $220. I normally would never play consecutives that many times under 10. I spread them out more like most would. But QP are usually just as crazy as the drawings are most of the time.

PA United States Member #22983 October 6, 2005 2226 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 7:12 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by crazyjaney on January 15, 2016

If there are no sub optimal

combinations, tell me why a sequential series has never hit? The only instance I can think of is the ff 5 in Florida a few years ago.

There absolutely are sub optimal combinations. And those quick pick terminals are programmed to pick them.

But if those combinations do come up you will most likely be the sole winner. If more common ones come up you may be sharing it. You could always use a RNG for QP's which would still be QP's but you are deciding which ones to use which kinda makes them your own numbers. Every terminal individually picks random numbers, it is not one big "house" computer doing it. Any numbers have a chance though.

PA United States Member #22983 October 6, 2005 2226 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 7:16 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by rcbbuckeye on January 15, 2016

So crazy,

Are you saying that with PB and MM, EVERY lottery terminal in the US is programmed to give out so called bad numbers for people that buy QP's?

That means EVERY lottery terminal has to be able to sift through ALL the combinations ALL the other terminals around the country sold.

Except one little thing. The terminals aren't connected state to state.

Oh, and when the terminals are programmed, who decides what is going to be a winning combination, and a losing combination. Out of over 292 million?

Look, with odds like these games, they don't need to do anything to hurt your chances. Because your chances are tiny already.

Exactly. A lot of very far-fetched theories with no logical or factual foundation. The reality is most are just pissed they did not win. Even me, but I expect that most of the time that is how it is with big jackpots. But I also expect that one day I will will be te winner. Already came close matching 4 out of 5 and it was a QP and a "bad combo". 05 07 08 09 30 Winning numbers were 07 08 09 14 30. If that 5 were a 14 I would have had $1.6 million.

PA United States Member #22983 October 6, 2005 2226 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 7:20 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by dddwww on January 15, 2016

A sequential series has never hit for the exact same reason that 11,238,000 other combinations haven't hit.

If you exclude the powerball then there are 11,238,513 possible combinations of 5 numbers out of 69

Of those there are 65 combinations that are sequential so you would expect a sequential set to be drawn, ON AVERAGE, once every 1662 years.

But a sequential series is just as likely to show up in the very next drawing as any other set of 65 combinations you can come up with.

How many combinations have a gap of 5, 11, 14, 17, 21?

Surely it is more likely that some random looking set of gaps is going to come up than a sequential set, right?

Well it isn't. In fact there is only one combination that has that gap: 1-6-17-31-48-69 and guess what, just like 11,238,000 other combinations

that combination has never been drawn before either. But it has EXACTLY the same chance of being drawn as any other combination on Saturday.

What are the odds that all 5 numbers will be even? Or all be odd? Well there is a slight bias towards odd numbers, but that is just because there are 35 odd balls and 34 even balls. But knowing that doesn't give picking odd numbers the edge at all. Because you have to pick the exact number not whether a ball is odd or even and all numbers have an equal probability of being picked. The #2 ball doesn't avoid getting picked because the #1 ball was previously picked, the #5 ball doesn't do its best to stay away from the tube because #1, 2, 3, and 4 were just picked. Balls don't have minds, they don't wander around in the powerball container based on the number printed on them and they absolutely don't remember who got picked in the previous drawings. They just don't.

Yeah people only focus on sequential combos because they are so easy to remember. But they ignore all the other millions of combo's that also have not come up that are also more spread out. I thought those little balls in the machine actually fought each other and was like "Get down bitch you came up last time, it is my turn!"

United States Member #162003 December 18, 2014 43 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 8:31 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by sirbrad on January 15, 2016

You won what? Smaller prizes? So have I, but I won more playing QP's on jackpot games then using my own numbers. I won more on smaller games playing my own numbers. But I also play more QP's on bigger games, and play my own numbers more on smaller games. So that is probability and odds for you. Any ticket can win yes, but when the bulk of the combinations are played in one state they have a much better chance. But it is not 100% still they just have more plays and better odds. Way more chances. Let's not forget TN won and beat the odds twice now with this matrix. So yeah any ticket can win.

Any ticket in a higher population can win you mean, more combinations played=more chance to win, so yes you're right. And you can say what you like. My last points in my last post still stand.

Texas United States Member #55889 October 23, 2007 5611 Posts Offline

Posted: January 15, 2016, 8:49 pm - IP Logged

Quote: Originally posted by gavin256 on January 15, 2016

It doesn't matter what any sort of "math" or "reasoning" anyone comes up with. These drawings reek to high he1l and it will have ramifications on future play. That's all that needs to be said. Either give players more of a chance to win smaller to medium prizes or suffer the consequences. Why do you think so many young people are not interested in playing the lottery? Maybe they are smart enough and can do the "math" that you speak of and realize they have literally no chance of winning anything. If you live in a state that hasn't won a jackpot for years and years, the fact is that it is going to discourage you from playing. Nuff said.

The problem with making the odds better for smaller prizes is that the jackpot will suffer. Sales was falling off and the only way to fix it was to change the matrix so there would be larger jackpots to sell more tickets. It worked.

For those that want smaller prizes and a better chance to win them, there are many games such as Cash 5, All or Nothing, Lucky 4 Life, and the Pick3/Pick 4 games. Also scratch offs. There's something for everyone.