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Sign the petition - eliminate computerized drawings!

Topic closed. 338 replies. Last post 10 years ago by rdc137.

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Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
Chief Bottle Washer
New Jersey
United States
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Posted: June 4, 2005, 4:45 pm - IP Logged

like i said we need to get a law BANNING computerized drawings because its a form of cheating that gives the lottery commission an unfair advantage in my opinion.like you said it could be skewed,tampered,messed with in any way they like including monitoring the results and programming the drawing to make the daily number the number that was bought the least or not at all by players that day giving the lottery commission maximum profit and the players little or nothing.indiana ia a good example of this and everyone knows they have other scandals already.....

Yes, I agree with lottomike on this - the only way to combat this madness is through federal legislation.  And for those who will instantly jump to the conclusion that the federal government cannot interfere with the states on this one, you are wrong.  There are MANY federal laws already controlling many aspects of lottery games.

 

Check the State Lottery Report Card
What grade did your lottery earn?

 

Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
Help eliminate computerized drawings!

    time*treat's avatar - radar

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    Posted: June 4, 2005, 10:00 pm - IP Logged

    I don't imagine that the wolf cares that the fox is not giving the chickens a 'fair chance', as long as the fox shares.

    wolf (feds) --> Cheers <-- fox (states)

    The quickest 'legislation' would be for enough folks in computer-draw states to 'petition' their federal reserve notes to remain in their pockets until the matter is resolved to their taste.   

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

      LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
      Tennessee
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      Posted: June 5, 2005, 5:39 pm - IP Logged

      thats a pretty neat way of putting it,but it is scary when they use cartoons to seduce people into liking computerized drawings....


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        Posted: June 7, 2005, 5:21 pm - IP Logged

        I have just signed the petition. Lets hope that there's one jackpot winner over 365+ million.


          Turkey
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          Posted: June 9, 2005, 11:12 am - IP Logged

          hanks :)

            LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
            Tennessee
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            Posted: June 9, 2005, 2:54 pm - IP Logged

            lets hope oklahoma doesn't start out with computerized drawings....

              JAZZY JASPER's avatar - scenery water_mountains.jpg

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              Posted: June 10, 2005, 10:29 pm - IP Logged

                And the beat goes on!

              "It's not easy, being, GREEN! "


               

                slackjack's avatar - onscale
                New Member
                North Carolina
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                Posted: June 12, 2005, 7:45 am - IP Logged

                Added my namePatriot

                  LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
                  Tennessee
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                  Posted: June 17, 2005, 6:44 am - IP Logged

                  computerized drawings need to be banned foreverHiding Behind Computer

                    MathWizard's avatar - moon
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                    Posted: June 17, 2005, 9:27 pm - IP Logged

                    Wow.  Until today I had no idea there were so many people against computerized draws.

                    For what it is worth, I am one of the programmers that have worked on some of the systems mentioned.  I have been working on these types of systems for well over a decade.  While I could easily talk at length on any of the many points touched upon in this thread (both pro and con) I am not sure that my opinions would be appreciated.  Of course, I am rather pro computers, but I am not without my concerns about them either.  If anyone here does have a question, I would be pleased to try to answer it, but I certainly do not want to start a flame war or be harassed for being associated with the other side.

                    There are two points I would like to make however.

                    One, what about five-minute Keno games?  These games have used computerized draws since their inception because performing hundreds of regular draws per day is all but impossible.  It would not be so much a question a cost, but simply of logistics.  Do you feel that Keno draw processes are unfair?

                    Two, the math done to calculate the odds of 4 Pick 3 results being the same in a 54 draw period (as happened in Pennsylvania) is incorrect.  The odds of this happening is one in 3,324.  Certainly this is odd, but not outside the realm of possibility.

                    Thanks!

                      LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
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                      Posted: June 17, 2005, 10:02 pm - IP Logged

                      Wow.  Until today I had no idea there were so many people against computerized draws.

                      For what it is worth, I am one of the programmers that have worked on some of the systems mentioned.  I have been working on these types of systems for well over a decade.  While I could easily talk at length on any of the many points touched upon in this thread (both pro and con) I am not sure that my opinions would be appreciated.  Of course, I am rather pro computers, but I am not without my concerns about them either.  If anyone here does have a question, I would be pleased to try to answer it, but I certainly do not want to start a flame war or be harassed for being associated with the other side.

                      There are two points I would like to make however.

                      One, what about five-minute Keno games?  These games have used computerized draws since their inception because performing hundreds of regular draws per day is all but impossible.  It would not be so much a question a cost, but simply of logistics.  Do you feel that Keno draw processes are unfair?

                      Two, the math done to calculate the odds of 4 Pick 3 results being the same in a 54 draw period (as happened in Pennsylvania) is incorrect.  The odds of this happening is one in 3,324.  Certainly this is odd, but not outside the realm of possibility.

                      Thanks!

                      well with ball drawings we know there is a fair shot,with computers how do we know they don't program the computer to put out a daily number that was not bet on to bring in more profit to the lottery commission?  that would add up to a lot of extra cash by the end of the year........

                        Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                        Chief Bottle Washer
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                        Posted: June 17, 2005, 10:02 pm - IP Logged
                        MathWizard,
                         
                        It is not a matter of being "pro" or "against" computers.  I don't think there's anyone who could call me anti-computer, since computers are the only way I have ever made a living, and they are the one thing I enjoy doing in life the most (apart from family stuff of course).
                         
                        It is a matter of recognizing that despite computers being great things, it does not stand to reason that they are the best way to do everything.  Lottery drawings are just one area where computers insert a measure of distrust and lack of transparency into the lottery drawing process, where lottery ball drawings do not.  If you think this is an anti-technology diatribe, then you have mis-read it.
                         
                        I appreciate your reasonable approach to posting on this thread, seeing as it would be better to argue against computerized drawings in a thread dedicated to that topic, rather than a topic that encourages people to sign a petition.
                         
                        However, if you feel strongly in a belief that computerized drawings are better, then by all means start a new topic and let your thoughts be known!  There are no opinions that are censored here (other than spammers).  You may not get a lot of support, though, because polls have consistently shown that players just like real drawings better.  That being said, there are a few people lurking here who agree with you, although like I said, it is a relatively small number.
                         
                        Thanks for making your presence known, and good luck to you.

                         

                        Check the State Lottery Report Card
                        What grade did your lottery earn?

                         

                        Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                        Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                          MathWizard's avatar - moon
                          New Member
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                          Posted: June 18, 2005, 12:22 am - IP Logged

                          Hi Todd;

                          I now see that there are several forums devoted to the topic, so I will direct my future posts regarding how computers conduct lottery draws to one of them.  The reason I posted here (aside from not having gotten that far in the forums ... man there is a lot of information here Smile) was that I was so surprised by the number of misconceptions on how the computerized draws work.  I cannot speak for all systems, but I have been involved in development, design and/or testing of those used by a handful of lotteries.

                          Even with all their issues, however, I still see them as being better than balls.  It is not just the cost, and the tremendous amount of work required to keep a set of balls within a "fair" set of parameters, but it is also the improved fairness.  Perhaps lottery players want a system where there are small biases that they can potentially discover and take advantage of, but a Lottery has a mandate to provide a "fair" draw to all of its customers.  If some players determine that certain numbers have a greater or lesser chance of appearing, then that could be seen as being unfair to the other players who just grab a quick pick.

                          While I wholeheartedly acknowledge that California and (potentially) Indiana (I still can't get over the idea of them just downloading the software from the net) are strikes against my side of the argument, there have been a number of ball related problems in the last while as well.  Two problems in Connecticut cost that lottery almost a million dollars and one in Georgia cost around $500,000.  Texas had a ball jam in their machines last year as well (I do not think it cost them anything however, other than the inconvenience of resetting the draw).  I have heard of a number of other problems over the last year or so where operators or equipment did not conduct the draw properly.  This is just "Human Error" of course, and there is nothing that can be done about it (short of replacing the humans with computers Wink).

                          The one argument, however, that I have heard that I can only offer a small rebuttal to (which I will offer elsewhere) is the idea that with a computer, the player cannot see the draw.  This is basically true.  But if it is so important to lottery players, why, in the few lotteries where I have been involved, are the viewing statistics so low?  They all pointed to practically no viewership of the draw programs.  Draw programs are not cheap, and the lotteries have to pay for them, which means the government does not get as much money from the lotteries, which means taxes go up or government programs get reduced.

                          While I am not going to sign your petition (not that it matters anyway, since I do not live in the USA), I wonder if it would not be better to solicit your lottery and/or TV stations for more draw air time?  Tell them you want to see lottery draws.  If program managers thought there was an audience for it, they would broadcast it.  Lotteries would be required to offer draws to fit the programming.  In this way, the cost of conducting draws could be shown to have a positive cost benefit.  When it comes right down to it, if no one watches the draw, then why should the lottery shoulder the tremendous cost of using balls?

                          Thanks and good luck to you too.

                          (P.S.  If you think these posts belong in a different thread, please move them ... just let me know where.  Thanks.)

                           

                            Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                            Chief Bottle Washer
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                            Posted: June 18, 2005, 12:37 am - IP Logged

                            Well, to address your viewership question, studies have shown that people want the drawings shown on live TV, even if they don't watch them.  They want to know they're there, because then they know it's true and fair.  That should totally clarify that point.

                            With computerized drawings, not only do you get no live drawing, but even worse, you get a cartoon which mimics a drawing.  Why, MathWizard, do you think they mimic a ball machine in the cartoons?  Why not just show scrambled numbers coming together or something?  Do you realize that it is because people really want a real drawing, and not computerized random numbers?

                            In truth, there is really no argument for computerized drawings which is compelling.  Even the most heralded claim of computerized supporters is their financial cost savings.  That argument is basically nullified by the decreased sales caused by player distrust.

                            Take Delaware, for example.  Lawmakers tried putting through a bill this year to force the lottery to revert back to ball drawings, because sales were getting so bad, and players were complaining.  Lawmakers in Indiana tried to do the same thing.  In the end, these things fail because the lottery is nothing but a political money-machine, and very much tied to the executive branch of government, so they tend to have a lot of power in these matters.

                            But since you seem to be taking an interest in this subject, I suggest you do a lot more research, and not on the technology side.  You need to really study the other apects of it, from a lottery player's perspective, not from a programmer's perspective.  Because it has nothing at all to do with technology.

                             

                            Check the State Lottery Report Card
                            What grade did your lottery earn?

                             

                            Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                            Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                              MathWizard's avatar - moon
                              New Member
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                              Posted: June 18, 2005, 1:16 am - IP Logged

                              Well, to address your viewership question, studies have shown that people want the drawings shown on live TV, even if they don't watch them.  They want to know they're there, because then they know it's true and fair.  That should totally clarify that point.

                              But why would a TV station air the draws if no one is going to watch them?  TV stations make money by selling their time.  You are saying that the lottery should be paying for something that no one watches, regardless of how the numbers are generated.  It reminds me of the Flintstones episode where Fred and Barney start a restaurant and have to order a ton of parsley for the patrons to throw away.

                              As for why they mimic a draw machine in the animation (which is not a computerized draw, btw, as they use animation of ball draws in some places as well) is because that is what the Lottery's marketing department thought would look good.  I have seen demonstrations of all kinds of different animation processes.  Basically, the animator uses CGI and superimposes the draw results, which can come from any source.  But I wax technical again.

                              I must admit this is a fascinating topic.  I just read in another post that someone actually wants the balls because they are unfair.  The statement was:

                              With more state lottery games switching to faking draws in a computer [we] cannot recommend playing such lottery games except for fun.  You simply cannot predict winning numbers drawn in a computer random number generator setup to insure total randomness in drawings.

                              And after all the work I did to eliminate bias in the systems Smile.  Honestly, I never knew this was a factor, but given this is the desire, doesn't that now make what happened in California and what might be happening in Indiana a good thing?  I read in a news article about California that players were already aware of the glitch there and using it to their advantage.  If Indiana has a problem, shouldn't it make it more interesting to be looking for it?

                              When I first read your comment "it has nothing at all to do with technology", I thought, "then why all the technological arguments?"  However, I think I am starting to understand your point.  You actually want a chance at the unfairness of the ball draws.  Since no one knows exactly where the bias is, the game still appears fair, but with lots of hard work, you can find the subtle fluctuations and potentially take advantage of them.

                              I hope that doesn't sound sarcastic, because I do not mean it to be.  For over 20 years I have been involved with gaming, primarily as a programmer, but also as a mathematician who reviews games to insure they meet specific criteria regarding fairness and liability issues.  There has always been an acceptance that some bias might be present in ball draws, but whenever the bias was measurable, even if only theoretically, the balls would be retired and a new set installed.  That is why when computerized draws were proposed, they were designed to meet the strictest possible standards of fairness.

                              Todd, I really do want to understand this topic from a player's perspective.  I am enjoying the forums very much and kudos for what must be a lot of hard work.

                              Thanks!

                                 
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