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# What's going on here!?!?!?!

Topic closed. 6 replies. Last post 12 years ago by Irvin.

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Somewhere in Washington
United States
Member #3103
December 24, 2003
51 Posts
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 Posted: July 29, 2004, 12:42 pm - IP Logged

Anybody else notice this?  The number of \$175,000 winners for the drawing on 7/27/04 was WAY more than what was mathematically expected.  The probability of there being 34 winners is given a good approximation by the Poisson distribution formula.

260,317 * 43 = 11,193,631 tickets sold.  So n = 11,193,631

n*p = (11,193,631/2,649,920) = 4.224 expected number of winners.

So the probability of there being 34 winners is: ((4.224)^34 * e^-4.224)/34!

which is 9.3323 * 10^-20 or 0.000000000000000000093323

It appears we have just witnessed the impossible!

Chief Bottle Washer
New Jersey
United States
Member #1
May 31, 2000
23259 Posts
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 Posted: July 29, 2004, 1:00 pm - IP Logged

It's because of lot of people play birthdays, so if all 5 numbers are 31 or below the chances become very great that there will be several people who match all the numbers.  In this case all 5 numbers were 24 or less, greatly expanding the number of winners.

Check the State Lottery Report Card

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Help eliminate computerized drawings!

Somewhere in Washington
United States
Member #3103
December 24, 2003
51 Posts
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 Posted: July 29, 2004, 5:52 pm - IP Logged

I guess you're right Todd.  That's pretty interesting.  So, conversely when the numbers are high then the number of winners will probably be smaller than what was expected.  Fascinating...

mid-Ohio
United States
Member #9
March 24, 2001
19816 Posts
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 Posted: July 29, 2004, 6:08 pm - IP Logged

I've read on the websites of Gail Howard and others that players should avoid playing all  lower numbers because many people play birthdays and if they win, they will likely have to share the winnings with other players.  I wonder if all those winners are thinking about that now?

RJOh

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

MD
United States
Member #1701
June 18, 2003
8359 Posts
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 Posted: July 29, 2004, 6:51 pm - IP Logged

Many people who buy lottery tickets like mega and power ball haven't a clue as to what they are doing they fill out the ticket while standing in line many times. Lots of people play numbers like 2/4/6/8/10 and 10/15/25/30/35. Pick numbers in patterns, all on same line, shapes. crisscrosses, X's, and every other conceivable way. They don't know or care about the odds. They never used particular methods. In fact many players are first time players having heard about the jackpot or heard chit chat around work. A lot of the tickets that were played for last Tuesday, may have been bought last Friday and they bought extended play. Everybody that buys tickets doesn't sit down a research how to pick the numbers or come to site like this for answers to playing big buck games. They don't do calculations. They just play whatever number pops into their head. And ages of family numbers are the most played numbers. Second most played numbers are alphabet numbers some people play their initial or nick name or whatever name they can make which has 5 numbers and a bonus ball. And if everybody did take the time to research numbers for the big games there might be more winners because they will be playing more numbers spread out over the entire game board.

Big John says. You don't hit the number. The number hits you!!!!

I'm not Big John, I'm Four4me, Big John's a friend.
MD
United States
Member #1701
June 18, 2003
8359 Posts
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 Posted: July 30, 2004, 5:31 am - IP Logged

It's because of lot of people play birthdays, so if all 5 numbers are 31

I have a ticket like this I play sometimes using birth dates when I think it might hit. Lots of young kids in my family.

I have another ticket simular to this i play. Good part is i play their ages not there exact birth dates. And the numbers are in every range 1-10, 11-20, 21-30, 31-40, 41-50 with a bonus ball of 52

Big John says. You don't hit the number. The number hits you!!!!

I'm not Big John, I'm Four4me, Big John's a friend.

New Zealand
Member #2234
September 2, 2003
173 Posts
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 Posted: July 31, 2004, 5:36 am - IP Logged

Also dont pick all your numbers in the same decade. There was a draw in New Zealand with all the numbers drawn in the thirties. The end result 38 division 1 winners.

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