Thursday, April 27, 2023

Wishful thinking versus scientific evidence

Plotted you see all the numbers for the first draw (ball) of all Megamillions ever played in Europe since Fri Feb 13, 2004 to Tue Apr 25, 2023. Do you see any pattern there? No, you can't. The reason is that these numbers are all random.

If there would be a pattern, then a #LLM like #ChatGPT would be able to find it, but there is none. Yet you get news like "Man makes headlines after winning the lottery with ChatGPT" with statements like "The winning amount was small, but the approach was impressive.".

Take any lottery in the world, line up any amount of wining numbers separated by commas and pipe them through the below python script to find out if you find any pattern. 

  1 import sys

  2 import matplotlib.pyplot as plt


  4 numbers = []

  5 for token in','):

  6     try:

  7         numbers.append(int(token.strip()))

  8     except ValueError:

  9         # ignore tokens that can't be converted to integers

 10         pass


 12 # Create a new figure and axis object

 13 fig, ax = plt.subplots()


 15 # Set the title of the plot

 16 ax.set_title("Input Numbers")


 18 # Set the labels for the X and Y axis

 19 ax.set_xlabel("Position")

 20 ax.set_ylabel("Number")


 22 # Plot the numbers as a line chart

 23 ax.plot(numbers)


 25 # Show the plot



 28 # Save the plot

 29 plt.savefig('plot.png')

If you find one, then you will be using scientific evidence that you can hit the jackpot. If you cannot, then use scientific evidence at a job and you will make a great living. Do not expect though that wishful thinking will get you far.

Having hope is great. We all need it. But nothing can replace the scientific method when it comes to making educated decisions.

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