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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Mathematicians


8 comments:

  1. I LOVE that! It goes with one of the random quotes I use:
    Lottery: A tax on people who are bad at math

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  2. Yes, we've had that same debate here in Georgia many times.

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  3. Did you watch Numb3rs this week? That was the entire point of the episode.

    (My verification word isn't any good today -- but yesterday, it gave me "Rewok." I very nearly wanted to post just for that.)

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  4. Actually for most people game theory can prove that the lottery is a good idea.

    Essentially the proof is that I throw more change into a jar on my dresser each week than I spend on lotto, so the cost to me is essentially 0 (actually my wife uses the change in my pockets in the laundry). The odds of winning are also essentially 0, however the possible payout compared to the cost is more than enough to make it a useful strategy.

    It is also known around this house as the ABC retirement plan.

    defernupta - deferred wedding.

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  5. As I tell my students, the odds of winning the lottery are terrible. However, comparing them to the odds of being struck by lightning are not right. I can be struck by lightning for free. I cannot win the lottery until I have a ticket, no matter the odds. To some extent, I'd rather have a chance at winning some money than getting hit by lightning. (grin)

    Dr. Phil

    lingion -- lingerie worn by Roman legions.

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  6. Not any more silly than funding health programs with the settlement money from the tobacco lawsuits.

    Or, since I once got into this with a coworker on the occasion of the office lottery pool and how he was smarter because of his investments in his stock club, you can consider the lotto as a ultra-high risk, ultra-high payout, low-entry barrier investment strategy.

    hydrap - a water hazard

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  7. forgot to mention, because of his bragging about which stocks he was buying I was able to show how he lost more money last year in his stock portfolio than I played in the lottery.

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  8. The Lottery is like buying Playboy, or Hemmings Motor news... You are mostly doing it for the fantasy of how cool it could be if...

    As long as you are not spending the grocery or rent money, and as long as you are not expecting to win, you might actually be making a contribution to something that the government has not found the money to fund. Although most of the lottery funding is a scam, they ought to be required to fully fund the schools and then ADD the lottery proceeds, instead they substitute lottery money for budget money and leave the schools underfunded.

    Furic- So mad I got hiccups.

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