Buying a lottery ticket gives each player a ticket to dream, but everyone buys, hoping to win.
If you have ever bought a ticket, maybe you picked the numbers based on something personal and meaningful. But some statisticians say there is at least the "possibility" of seeing patterns develop.
"How do I pick my numbers?" Robert Stukes, a frequent lotto player asked. "By my family's birthdays."
Some pick their own numbers, others rely on technology like Janette Castro.
"I'm quick about getting my lottery tickets by having the machine pick it," Castro said.
The numbers people pick are random and any state lottery official will tell you every number drawn is random, too.
While that may be the case, statistical sciences professor Darcy Mays believes with a database of enough winning numbers, there is at least the "possibility" of seeing patterns develop.
That doesn't guarantee a win, but he says it might up the odds a little, especially in the smaller games like Pick 3 or Pick 4.
"If you were dedicated, and there really was some pattern that you were finding - you could not get rich - but you could probably do a good supplemental earning," Mays said.
"I just combine all these frequencies, and I just make a list from the most frequent numbers to the least frequent numbers," Dr. Min Su Kim, a professor of statistics said.
Kim compiled a computer database using 10 years of winning Powerball ball numbers, and the frequency at which they appear.
If the game is completely random, Kim argues all numbers should be drawn at approximately the same rate, but they aren't.
The Powerball consists of five white balls and one red Powerball. Kim says the most frequently drawn Powerball for the past 10 years is 20, followed by 37, 2, 31, and 35.
As for the white balls, the most frequently appearing number is 42, closely followed by 16, 35, 26, and 19.
Kim admits he is a believer in statistical probability.
"If you pick these numbers, there is more probability to win the grand prize."
But Arizona Lottery's Karen Bach says, "The balls for any given Powerball drawing are selected randomly and there are multiple security measures in place to ensure the utmost integrity."
And as for your odds of winning any game, they're posted on the Arizona Lottery website. Visit the following link: http://azlottery.com/Games.html
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