Numbers stuff

Yay! Passed 900 hours at 8 pm tonight. So, OK: i’m not gonig to list out EVERY milestone. But i liked that one. 🙂

Mor seriously – well, serious for some! – is the lottery.

I don’t think i’ve won for maybe four years now. Not even a tenner. This despite religiously, almost every single week, purchasing two random sets of numbers (or “lucky dips” as the marketing has it).



What ARE the odds on that? It is beginning to feel as though someone up there (i.e., at Lottery HQ) doesn’t like me.

Still, i used to be a statistician. I ought to be able to get my head around this.

Is there anything about random selection that makes it less likely you’ll win? Er, possibly. Because that increases the chances of your selecting similar numbers.

But hang on. If i had two tickets with the same number set on them, is my chance of winning less than if i have two totally different sets?

Hmmm. The heart says yes: but dredging up Beruilli somewhere from the depths, i’m not so sure. I have a suspicion that p{win} is reduced but E{win} is the same.

There. That’ll shock the girly contingent!

Not just a creature of nail polish: she actually does some math too.

But is she right?

anyone know?



3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    I don’t know all the ins and outs of the system now (they try to dazzle people by making it increasingly complicated), but when it started up the odds were six to one against getting your money back. You’re better off playing roulette. In fact, you’re better off with most forms of gambling.

  2. 2

    Jane said,

    Its sooo tempting to do the Lottery (I’m very poor right now), but my dad was a serious gambler on the horses, and he always lost.

    I also remember standing mortified in the Casino in Perth Australia on my 18th birthday , watching Japanese business men throwing away thousands of dollars (I wanted to ask them if they minded just giving me all their cash , instead of throwing it away)
    It put me off for life LOL…

  3. 3

    Carka said,

    I don’t think it affects your odds at all, since the lottery is a random number generator too – you’ve got the same odds of winning each week with a random set of numbers, the birthdays of everyone in your family, or the numbers 1,2,3,4,5,6.

    Regardless, E(winnings – outlay) < 0…

Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: