I think gambling is stupid. ^98677a <div style="max-height:460px;width: calc(100vw + 100px);overflow:hidden;"><iframe src="https://adamjgrant.github.io/lottery-simulator/" style="width: calc(100vw + 100px);height:620px;transform:scale(0.75);transform-origin:0 0;overflow:hidden;"></iframe></div> To prove it to you, how about I just give you a million dollars and you can go out and buy as many Powerball tickets as you'd like just to prove me wrong. Go ahead, **try it.** ^9cd03f I designed this to work exactly the way the real Powerball does, so you might as well be playing the real thing with this amount of money. ![[Screenshot 2024-03-14 at 2.50.09 PM.png|300]] _Click on an amount to watch your tickets play at $1 each_ ### Powerball Simulator Payout Rules In the Powerball simulator, players "purchase" tickets for $1 each, and winnings are determined based on how many numbers on their ticket match the randomly drawn numbers. Here are the simplified payout rules: > [!info] Did you know? > The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are about 1 in 292.2 million. 1. **Jackpot (Grand Prize)**: Match all five numbers and the Powerball number. The prize is a large simulated amount, so in this example, $100 million. This prize is shared if there are multiple winners. 2. **$1 Million Prize**: Match all five numbers but not the Powerball. This prize is for those who nearly hit the jackpot but missed the Powerball number. 3. **$50,000 Prize**: Match four numbers and the Powerball. A significant win that rewards you for getting close to the top prizes. 4. **$100 Prize**: This is awarded in two cases: - Match four out of five numbers without the Powerball. - Match three numbers and the Powerball. 5. **$7 Prize**: Also awarded in two scenarios: - Match three numbers without the Powerball. - Match two numbers and the Powerball. 6. **$4 Prize**: The smallest prize, awarded for either matching one number and the Powerball or just the Powerball alone. Every ticket costs $1, so if you don't win any prize, it's effectively a loss of $1 per ticket. ### The Stark Reality of Gambling Odds Now, with your virtual million dollars in hand, you might feel a surge of optimism. But let's ground ourselves in reality. The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are about **1 in 292.2 million**. To put that in perspective, **you're more likely to be struck by lightning, become an astronaut, or find a four-leaf clover on your first try.** #### What This Simulator Teaches Us The beauty of this simulator isn't just in the fun of pretend-winning; it's a stark, unembellished lesson in the improbability of gambling as a means to wealth. As you "spend" your virtual million, watch how quickly the balance dwindles with little to show for it. It's a powerful visual reminder that each ticket is another hopeful bet against nearly impossible odds. #### The True Cost of Chasing a Dream Beyond the slim chances of hitting the jackpot, consider the smaller prizes. Even as some tickets win, the majority will not, and the small payouts hardly cover the cost of the tickets themselves. This cycle of win-some-lose-more is a fundamental principle of lotteries: they are designed to entice with the allure of huge payouts, while ensuring that most participants will end up with less than they started with. #### A Lesson in Financial Wisdom This simulator is not just a game; it's a lesson in financial literacy. It vividly illustrates the principle that gambling, especially on lotteries, is an inefficient and unrealistic strategy for financial growth. The smart money move? Investing in avenues with more favorable odds of return over the long term, like stocks, bonds, or mutual funds. #### Final Thoughts So, before you lay down your hard-earned money on a Powerball ticket, remember the lessons learned here. The thrill of the gamble is a fleeting pleasure, but the consequences of chasing those astronomical odds can be lasting. Let this simulator serve as a reminder: the safest bet is always on yourself, your skills, and your ability to make wise financial decisions outside the realm of gambling.