Powerball & Mega Millions Jackpot Analysis to Produce a Better Number Generator

A Not So Random Number Generator For Powerball & Mega Millions Lotteries

I couldn't believe it. Well, I do believe it but lets just say I was stunned and pretty damn excited. Before I get to what excited me so much let me provide you with the backstory of how I built A Better Quick Pick for my wife a few years ago. She would periodically play Powerball and Mega Millions and would always just check the box to let the lottery system generate her picks for her, and NEVER have any luck whatsoever.

So I said to my wife, look I'm a web developer and also not too bad at math so why don't I create a web app to generate better picks for you and increase your odds of at least hitting some numbers. My thought was to build a web app where she could pull out her phone, click the shortcut icon on her home screen and easily generate better numbers to use.

Personally, I've always been somewhat fascinated by the Powerball and Mega Millions lottery and knew deep down that the numbers that are picked for each drawing do not follow the true statistical percentages, so I started researching winning strategies of choosing Powerball and Mega Millions lottery winning numbers.

What I discovered is that Powerball winning numbers and Mega Millions winning numbers do indeed follow certain patterns. So I set out to create my own algorithm and test my theories. In a nutshell, my hypothesis was to decrease the pool of numbers from which to choose from, numbers that have historically over a defined period of time appeared to be either hot numbers (winning Powerball and Mega Millions numbers that have appeared more often than others) or cold numbers (Powerball and Mega Millions numbers that have not appeared very often).

By figuring out what the hot and cold Powerball and Mega Millions winning numbers are I was able to significantly reduce the pool of numbers that I would use to generate potential winning numbers. These numbers are not necessarily aimed at winning the Powerball Grand Prize or Mega Millions Jackpot, but rather geared towards providing consistently better numbers to increase your odds of winning smaller prizes.

Ok got it? Now lets fast forward to today and why I was so excited. Truth be told I haven't looked at my app or played Powerball and Mega Millions in quite a few months. I guess like most people I forget about it until the Powerball or Mega Millions jackpots reach well into the hundreds of millions of dollars, and then suddenly it's on my radar again. I know I can hear you saying "So $10,000,000 is not good enough for you?".

So, I opened up my app and noticed that there must have been a bug in my code. I tried to open up the Mega Millions historical data page and it crashed when I clicked on a date from last month. I needed to figure out why this was happening, so I opened up my code and tried to replicate the error again while looking at my logs and noticed that I had a spelling mistake, ugh. It was a simple enough fix so once I fixed the mistake I refreshed the page and low and behold it showed the max potential winnings for that drawing was the Mega Millions Jackpot!

I decided to go thru the historical data over the past month and I discovered that I missed out on potentially winning over $300,000,000. THREE. HUNDRED. MILLION. DOLLARS.! I started taking screenshots of the potential winnings.

Mega Millions potential winnings from previous month

Dec 7, 2020 estimated Mega Millions jackpot was $264 million, with no winner. We really had a chance here as every number that was drawn were all numbers contained in my much smaller pool of numbers. Dec7 2020jackpot

Dec 10, 2020 we could have won $800 Dec10 2020 800

Dec 15th estimated Mega Millions jackpot of $291 million and once again no winner, however my pool of numbers contained each of the winning drawn Mega Millions numbers and mega ball. Dec14 2020 mm jackpot

Dec 17th we could have won $1,500 Dec17 2020 mm 1500

Dec 21st we could have won $20,000 Dec21 2020 mm20000

Dec 31st we could have won $50,000 Dec31 2020 mm 50000

And then for the Powerball winning numbers we lost out on a potential $2,150,000

Dec 8th would have won $150,000 Dec8 2020 pb 150000

And, finally on Dec 22nd we missed out on a potential $2,000,000 Dec22 2020 pb 2000000

So, why am I showing you all this since I didn't win? I'm showing you this to demonstrate that by reducing the pool of Mega Millions numbers of 70 white balls and 25 gold Mega Balls to only using numbers that exceed a certain percentage of being drawn in previous drawings (over a defined period of time) that are determined to be either hot or cold. You can see in the screenshots that the pool of hot and cold numbers fluctuates from drawing to drawing based on my algorithm. However, wouldn't you rather choose from a pool of 22 white balls and then maybe 8-10 gold mega balls verus 70 and 25 respectively?

The same theory applies to the pool of Powerball numbers of 69 white balls and 26 red Powerballs to significanly reduce the pool of numbers and give you a statistically higher probability of hitting those numbers.

Feel free to see for yourself and scroll back thru the matching Better Quick Picks for both Mega Millions historical data and Powerball historical data and let me know what you think.