# Lottery number

Discussion in 'Math' started by Lightfire, Jan 10, 2012.

1. ### Lightfire Thread Starter Well-Known Member

Oct 5, 2010
690
21
Hello,

Let's say the total numbers to choose from a lottery card is 64 and I am only allowed to choose 6 numbers.

For example, I really want to win. $1,000,000 for example. To win, I should bet many times. Now, I want to know how many bets I have to do? I hope you understand what I want to say. 2. ### Zazoo Member Jul 27, 2011 114 43 To guarantee a win you would have to bet every possible outcome. You are choosing 6 numbers from 64 numbers. Assuming a typical lottery, this is without replacement and without concern for order. To determine the number of possible combinations (nCr): $nCr = \frac{n!}{r!(n-r)!}$ Where n is total number of items and r is number of items selected 3. ### RiJoRI Well-Known Member Aug 15, 2007 536 26 If you do the math, You'd be a LOT better off just holding on to the money for the tickets! At$1.00 per ticket, you'd need to spend some $75 million to ensure winning$1 million!

I've been known to make an offer to my lottery-playing co-workers: "Look, give me the money you spend on the lottery. Then, if and when I feel like it, I'll give you some money back." Although this is what happens with the lottery, nobody takes me up on it!

--Rich

4. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
20,772
2,540
I don't know what math Lightfire is at, but I suspect it is Algebra. He is still in school.

5. ### MrChips Moderator

Oct 2, 2009
12,636
3,455
If you feel compelled to play the lottery game, buy one ticket, no more.
Or pool with others and buy one ticket.

I do not play the lottery game. The odds are overwhelmingly against you.

6. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
20,772
2,540
That is what I do, it is a voluntary tax for idiots like me.

With games like this, the house (lottery sponsor) always wins.

7. ### 1chance Member

Nov 26, 2011
42
184
You might be interested in researching "expected value". It is the expected return on your investment. I have my students look on the Missouri Lottery website so we can compute the probability related to the various scratch-off ticket games. They post the number of prizes won vs available in each category so you can figure the probability and expected value from that. Obviously, this changes daily, based on which prizes are still out there and the number of remaining tickets. If one really wanted to play seriously this information, in theory at least, could greatly enhance your odds of winning (by playing the games with the best expected value).
After this, my students design their own game of chance, compute the expected value and then we have "game day" and see how close we come to the expectations. Games with multiple smaller prizes (like scratch-off tickets) are much easier to get close to expected value as opposed to the big Powerball type lotteries.

8. ### Lightfire Thread Starter Well-Known Member

Oct 5, 2010
690
21
That is. Rijori, what I want to know is how many millions or times I should bet in order to win the 1 million. no no no i do not bet in lotter, eheehhehhehehe

Bill, ye ye I'm in algebra but you kno.

9. ### MrChips Moderator

Oct 2, 2009
12,636
3,455
I think he gave you the answer =
(64 x 63 x 62 x 61 x 60 x 59) /(1 x 2 x 3 x 4 x 5 x 6) = 74,974,368 tickets.

10. ### joeyd999 AAC Fanatic!

Jun 6, 2011
2,757
2,936
Here in Florida, the payout is $0.50 on the dollar. A good casino pays out$0.94 to $0.96 on the dollar (slots). A good Blackjack player can get close to say,$0.99 on the dollar (assuming rules that favor the player). This is really the only odds game you can get close to equality with the house.

If you *really* must gamble, you'll do much better at a casino than a lottery. Learn to play cards, and you can do even better.

*But*, in the end, the house *always* wins!

As poker is not an odds game, I don't address that here...

11. ### t06afre AAC Fanatic!

May 11, 2009
5,939
1,222
If you want to get rich for sure. You have to own the lotteri. Not just participate

12. ### joeyd999 AAC Fanatic!

Jun 6, 2011
2,757
2,936
Ponzi schemes work well...till they throw you in jail.

13. ### ErnieM AAC Fanatic!

Apr 24, 2011
7,439
1,627
Not quite. If you "take odds" on a pass line bet in craps you make a bet with even odds, and that is the best bet in a casino hands down.

Over your lifetime you will average nothing lost, nothing won from that bet.

14. ### joeyd999 AAC Fanatic!

Jun 6, 2011
2,757
2,936
Correct, ErnieM. I don't play craps, and i completely blanked if from my mind in my post.

Difference between craps & BJ: Can't cheat with craps. A good card counter (or team!) can put the long term odds in his favor.

15. ### GetDeviceInfo Senior Member

Jun 7, 2009
1,571
230
Don't most of the casinos now use broken decks, which thwarts the counters?

16. ### joeyd999 AAC Fanatic!

Jun 6, 2011
2,757
2,936
My understanding is that there are still ways to "beat the house" over long periods of time. But it takes real smarts, a good memory, and the willingness to potentially lose lots of money in the interim. That's not me.

EDIT: And not get caught!

OTOH, I have been working on a 'system' the last few years for BJ. On my computer, I've managed to turn a \$500 bankroll into about 40K so far using Vegas rules, but I am not comfortable enough with it to risk actual money. Remember that, regardless of the system (except for actual counting), in the long run the house *always* wins.