I see so much dumb totally made up lottery maths around, it’s no wonder people get confused.

Just today I came across another ‘system’ teaching people to predict lottery numbers by using ‘lottery sums’. What do they mean by using sums for the lottery?

In a nutshell the expert idiot writer meant adding up groups of past numbers, and making silly conclusions about them…

You sum (or ‘add’) the first two numbers, then the second and third groups of two numbers. Then you look at what range the sum totals fall into, and lo and behold based on the last 87 years results from the *Albanian Mega-Super-De-Dooper Lotto…* there is a pattern..!

Here’s why lottery sums are so dumb:-

- If you apply completely made up calculations with no logic behind them to sets of numbers in a fixed range – there will always be patterns, simply because the numbers are in a fixed range.
- It’s like looking at clouds and seeing faces, except cloud pictures are fun and not totally dumb…
- You don’t win anything for matching the sums, only for matching the actual results.
- Just because they try and use complicated sounding maths terms like ‘standard deviation’ does NOT make them clever, or correct!
- It’s like saying ‘pick only numbers between x and y because 70% of the past results are in that range’ – yeah, great, that’s because 70% of any possible result is in that range too! What about the other 30%!?

Of course this kind of dumb analysis makes absolutely no difference at all to your chances of winning. Thankfully it can’t make your chances any worse, but I guarantee it will NOT improve them either.

Hey, I just saw a cute little dog face in a cloud…

Curt Prasky// Jan 25, 2009 at 7:37 pmWell, the summing idea isn’t totally dumb. EG, I have been keeping track of the pick 3 in VA for the last couple of months and I noticed that 80% of the sums of the numbers drawn fall into the range between 6 and 18. The sums 2, 3, 21, 25, 26 and 27 have not occured one single time over the past 97 draws. So it seemes to make sense to keep the sums of your picks within that most frequent range. Over the past 6 weeks, I have won $160, 80 and 40 in the pick three. I have spent just a little less than that on it, so my net winnings are nothing to brag about, but for the time being I am slightly ahead.

LG// Jan 26, 2009 at 8:15 amHi Curt

Sorry, but this kind of number analysis is mere curiousity value only. It is entirely 100% useless for predicting future results.

Would you be applying the same kind of analysis if the balls did not have numbers on them and instead were simply all different colours?

Those balls have no concept of what they add up to – it just makes no sense to draw any conclusions from lottery sums.

Curt Prasky// Jan 26, 2009 at 9:47 amI’m not trying to predict anything. Just playing the probabilities. I know, the chances are 1 in 1000 for any combination to come up in the pick 3. Still, I can’t help but think if I pick combinations that occur more frequently than others, I have a slightly better chance of coming out ahead than if I pick combinations that occur less frequently. Here is a curiosity to ponder though. The chance of 7-1-8 coming up is one in a thousand right? In the VA lottery, the last time that number came up was February 26, 1999, nearly ten years ago.

LG// Jan 26, 2009 at 11:31 amHi Curt

But whilst certain ‘sums’ will occur more often, critically the actual picks behind those sums will NOT.

If the balls had no numbers painted on them, then it wouldn’t even cross your mind to do what you’re doing.

Think of dice. The sums of two dice range between 2 and 12. The only way to get a 2 is to roll 1 on both dice. There are lots more ways to roll a 7. But the actual chances of rolling a 4 and a 3 are still exactly the same as rolling a 1 and a 1.

You don’t win anything when your selected numbers add up to the sum of the numbers drawn, only if they match the actual numbers. Therefore it just doesn’t help you to use lottery sums to pick numbers.

Curt Prasky// Jan 26, 2009 at 10:54 pmWell, I understand what your saying and fully understand the theory behind your comments. I know I don’t win anything if the numbers drawn add up to a certain sum. Okay, so going by sums doesn’t help me win anything. Earlier I mentioned I had three wins in six weeks. Not quite accurate. My first win occured on December 26, 2008, the second time I had ever played pick three. I have won twice more since then. I play selected numbers in any order, though for a short time I played 50/50, that was my $40.00 win. Over 4 weeks then I have won $280.00 gross, and have spent about $260.00 on the tickets, for a net gain of $20.00. Not much, sure, but more than I ever won in the Megamillions game. So three wins out of 260 tickets. The given odds for hitting a win in any order is 1 in 166 (1 in 333 if you hit with a number like 2,4,4). So far I seem to be ahead of the odds. Call me superstitious if you like, but I will continue to play the way that has paid off for me so far. BTW, the analysis and working out the computer programs that help me analyze and pick the numbers is at least as much fun as looking for a horse and buggy in the clouds. And when was the last time anyone handed you $160.00 for finding a fluffy cloud shaped like a sheep? 🙂

LG// Jan 28, 2009 at 4:09 amHi Curt

OK, you’re supersitious :-).

Many lottery players are though – lucky numbers anyone?

But seriously, if it’s fun to do it, that’s cool. I’m all in favour of having some fun with it.

(I’m happy so long as nobody is losing money buying ‘systems’ or software that do this kind of manipulation in the belief it improves their chances of winning.)

Be lucky.

Bob S.// Mar 7, 2013 at 5:36 pmHi Guy,

I don’t want no more people to be taken advantage as I have. I ordered a “Guaranteed” to win the pick 3 system by picking the “Key” number combo. Well, after losing $40, following the sure can’t lose strategy, not to mention how much I spent on this top secret strategy… what a bunch of bull you know what!

LG// Mar 8, 2013 at 7:43 pmHey Bob

I hear your pain – but don’t worry, you’re certainly not alone.

Firstly, I strongly recommend you try and get your money back. Don’t accept any excuses, this thing doesn’t work as promised so you’re entitled. (Contact me if you want some help with this).

Secondly, I recommend you ditch the Pick 3 altogether. The jackpot prize is too small – there’s a lot more info in my tips here about why this is important.

Doug// Jun 4, 2013 at 8:04 pmWhy would you think the pick 3 is too small? A win is a win, small money is what we bet on big jackpots!! Everybody don’t have an unlimited supply of money yet, But maybe soon!

LG// Jun 4, 2013 at 10:31 pmBecause the odds are always greatly against you with any lottery game. Always will be. So if winning is the aim, then you want to win big. Pick 3 is more like a slot machine, you can never win big enough – and despite what those dodgy systems claim, nobody has turned Pick 3 into a regular income.

Doug// Jun 5, 2013 at 8:56 amA regular income, has anybody ever turned the lottery into a regular income except by a big jackpot? That’s why I play pick 3 to fund that big one.

LG// Jun 5, 2013 at 6:03 pmPeople who sell Pick 3 systems claim you can turn Pick 3 into an income – you can’t of course (unless you’re the one selling those junk systems perhaps…)

But if winning the big one is your aim, then your chances of winning are better if you drop Pick 3 completely and play the big one instead.

Fred// Nov 12, 2013 at 1:22 amIf you take all the previous sums of all the draws, say there is 6 in a draw, you add them etc, and you then plot the sums you get a pattern that conforms to a standard bell curve. With 68% of the sums of the numbers falling within one standard deveation each side of the mean. “In theory” you should only pick number that sum up to a number landing in that block. Sound logical? This is the sorta of wacho maths he’s talking about. If anything it only proves that the numbers are random…

LG// Nov 12, 2013 at 5:25 pmNot sure which comment you were replying to ‘Fred’ but er, yup, ‘lottery sums’ are a classic example of maths abuse ;-).

It was probably someone like Gail Howard who first came up with this nonsense theory, and most lottery books simply rehash the same old rubbish without really understanding what they are saying.

Tony Solis// Oct 30, 2014 at 10:55 amIt is only a game of chance and a hope to win big. I play with a group of friends and we all put $20 in to play Mega with Megaplier for 10 draws. So it is only $4 a week for 5 weeks, and we agreed on quick picks. Now as far as some body telling you they have a system that can pick your numbers is a bunch of bull. Only God can tell that. Systems which are actually wheels have to have the number that come out the day of the lottery. As for my self I like to pick my own numbers and I have my own system that I’m willing to share with you at no cost. I call it 1,2,3, give it to me. The way to play it is to pick 3 numbers and use the same numbers on all the lines of the play slip. then ad 2 number to each line if you are playing a pick 5 lotto and ad 3 numbers for a pick 6.