Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Instant Lottery Tickets based on real world probabilities

Get a feel for real things while you indulge in fantasy
  [vote for,

Lottery ticket sales are supposed to partially benefit education, so why not make them educational in and of themselves?

Here's what I mean. In a normal scratch-off ticket, you may get "cherry, cherry, palm tree". Another loser. But the items are arbitrary and don't match the relative commonness of cherries and palm trees in real life. However, a periodic table lottery ticket [complete with picture of mad scientist pouring liquid from chemistry beakers on the front] would scratch off to reveal "Nitrogen ... Nitrogen ... Oxygen" - still a loser, but it teaches you something about the atmosphere we live in and what elements are the most common. A winner would be something like "Hydrogen ... Hydrogen ... Hydrogen" and you'd see how rare something like that is in the world. Bigger prize if you get "Argon ... Argon ... Argon" or the like. The probabilities for ultra rare cases may have to be tweaked to make the game winnable.

Any probability distribution that occurs in real life can be modeled as a lottery ticket. For example, ages of people in America, where an age over 100 is a grand prize winner but most of the ages are around 50-59. Or it could be Economic Status, where most of the tickets are like "Poor ... Lower Middle Class ... Lower Middle Class" and you win if you get three of something other than three poors. It would be designed so that you rarely even SEE a "Rich", let alone get three of them.

Thank you.

phundug, Mar 29 2011

Abundance of elements in the Universe http://en.wikipedia...nts_in_the_Universe
Hydrogen Hydrogen Hydrogen [Inyuki, Mar 29 2011]

Someone else who claims to have found $10 on the footpath. http://blakeheritag...chic-phenomenon.php
[DrBob, Mar 30 2011]

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       I found a ten dollar note on a foot path yesterday, what are the chances of that happening?
rcarty, Mar 29 2011

       <scratching noise>"Francium … Hey! … Astatine … Wow, this could be great … Nitrogen - Damn!!"
hippo, Mar 29 2011

       (+) For geeky lotteries.
Inyuki, Mar 29 2011

       //I found a ten dollar note on a foot path yesterday, what are the chances of that happening?//   

       50:50. Either it happens, or it doesn't.   

       Actually, thinking about it, it happened so the chances are 100%
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 29 2011

       Right, I've caught someone with that in casual conversation too. I meant likelihood.
rcarty, Mar 29 2011

       Oh, then 50:50.
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 29 2011

rcarty, Mar 29 2011

DrBob, Mar 30 2011

       I would guess that $10 notes are found on footpaths somewhere every day so the chances seem quite high.
hippo, Mar 30 2011

       Well, my extensive research on Google reveals that other people also claim to have found $10 notes on the footpath. However, the top hit for '$10 notes found on footpath' takes me to a website which claims that people called 'Blake' have strange mental powers. So, for me, this calls into doubt both the credibility of anyone who claims to have found $10 on the footpath and also that of anyone who claims that $10 notes even exist.

It's bizarre stuff like this that keeps me constantly amused. Hoorah for the 'bakery!
DrBob, Mar 30 2011

       I was going to say 'ten dollar bill' instead, but decided on the more universal 'note' in anticipation of remarks about having to pay it off, what kind of bird it was from etc.
rcarty, Mar 30 2011

       There's a song about a ten dollar bill. I wish I could find that song.
ye_river_xiv, Mar 31 2011

       //Any probability distribution that occurs in real life can be modeled as a lottery ticket.// It is called insurance.
4whom, Apr 01 2011


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