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Science of Prediction: Gambling, Lottery, Nature (Weather Forecasting)

By Ion Saliu, Predictably At-Large

Nothing comes in absolute certainty, and the tragedy begins with weather forecasting.

I answered to a post on my message board (all my message boards or forums are now closed indefinitely). The poster referred to my special lotto software ToolsLotto5, ToolsLotto6 (once totally freeware; now withdrawn and not updated anymore).

There is an upgrade to the software he referred to. The new lotto programs are much more powerful. In case you haven't seen the illustrative presentation, here it is:

Yes, most eliminating filters are disabled. Still, the lottery software offers a lot of power. I have a very hard time trying to convince myself to release fee-based versions of such software. The filters in those programs are the most essentially mathematical in all my software. They are primary mathematical filters. That is, the filters are calculated directly by the Fundamental Formula of Gambling (FFG). The filters in my lottery software are derived (second-step calculations). The derived filters have a minimum and a maximum level.

The primary filters in SoftwareLotto do not need two levels. They require only the N parameter: Number of trials N for specific degrees of certainty, DC. I do not want to get into details, because I do not want to kill the lottery concept (!) Anyway, selfishly probably, not before I win significantly. But even then I would accept only a strictly limited number of users spread around the world.

If the FFG median is considered, then repeat and non-repeat have an equal degree of certainty. The filters in SoftwareLotto are based on no-repeat (elimination) based on the FFG median (DC = 50%). Enabling five parameters with DC = 50% or 1/2 yields .5 ^ 5 = 1 in 32. Of course, N is different for the same DC for different groups of numbers. That represents the concept of cycle of fruition. For single groups of numbers, the cycle of fruition might be just 2 or 3 future lottery drawings to play. For pairings, the cycle of fruition might go up to 20+ future drawings to play.

There is even more extraordinary news. All the above referred to appearance or no appearance (skips) of groups of lotto numbers. That is, the upper frequency limit was set to 0. But I can tell you (and other people can tell you) that, sometimes, the upper limit is 3, or 4, or even beyond 5! Those are rare occurrences, indeed. That's why they yield no combinations most of the time. When they hit, however, the amount of lotto combinations is a single-digit or teen amount. Undeniably mathematically, the odds to win the jackpot improve sevenfold.

It hits rarely, but it wins big. The overwhelming majority of humans perceive prediction as the science to forecast an outcome all the time. That's religion, not science! Prediction means calculating the outcome with the highest degree of certainty.

That is the formidable reason why my Fundamental Formula of Gambling was met with such fiery hostility, especially by casinos and sore gambling authors!

Finding the truth can be self-destructing under certain ideologies and religions.

Unfortunately, other forms of prediction do not enjoy the same latitude. Take weather forecasting. Only 100% prediction (degree of certainty) is acceptable at times. That is worse than impossible — it is absurd. Earthquakes cannot be predicted with a degree of certainty even above 1% (one percent)! It is the tragic but true reality! They might be able to forecast up-to-15-minute warnings in tornado-prone areas.

Again, it is a rarely validated prediction. So, as they say, better safe than sorry! I know, in my area, they apply that overly cautious form of prediction. If there is wind rotation, they trigger tornado warnings. They woke me up very early last month, August of 2008. Tornados are very rare in this area. But the weather specialists, some paid by the government and others working for television, absolutely exaggerate the risk! They do not consider the minimum speed of the wind rotation that can trigger a tornado. Furthermore, they don't consider the volume and the density of the "frightening" front. Smoke and dust in a large and humid front aggravate the tornado likelihood by orders of magnitude.

Not any rotation speed does trigger a tornado. Wind rotation speed less than fifty miles per hour cannot possibly trigger tornadoes! I have lived in the United States since 1985. There have not been any tornados here, in South Central Pennsylvania. In a very few cases, wind rotation caused some damage. I saw firsthand two cases in two years (2004 and 2005). The twisting wind damaged a few treetops in the Caledonia Natural Park (between Chambersburg and Gettysburg, Pennsylvania). It happened at least 500 feet above sea level. They formed big commissions to study the effects on site.

After serious — and costly — deliberations, the government experts concluded it must have been the effect of weak tornados! They spend some real taxpayers' money just by constituting commissions to determine if storms qualify as tornados. Then, the local TV stations will spend several days talking about those tornado commissions and their findings. There is money to be made. I notice increased TV advertising by insurance companies and funeral homes...

The problem with this overly cautious approach is loss of trust. The cry-wolf syndrome, anyone? People lose their trust in the predictors. We had a few more warnings after that early August 2008 tornado scare. I did not pay attention to them. Actually, I heard the warnings all over the radio. But I kept working on my computer. I had many Web pages to edit (while cursing Google!) I edited them with no fear of tornadoes (I was concentrating on writing!) I heard the thunder in the distance. I stopped working only when I heard the thunder close to my head crown. I was out on the trail during one of those announced stormy events. I got soaked, but I enjoyed the whole experience. Mild Fear was also enjoyable!

When they predict the weather, they must pay more attention to precision, to accuracy. Again, only minimum thresholds of speed in wind rotation and front volume and density can cause a tornado. They must establish those levels in earnest. Otherwise, warning people too often does more harm than good. People lose trust in the predictors. People might not give a damn on severe warnings, when such warnings are warranted and real. One day, there was no wind at all in the greater area. Yet, they issued a tornado warning effective from noon to 10 PM (ten hours!) What kind of "prediction" is that, axiomatic one? The most common piece of advice on TV was: "Lay down in the lowest possible place, including a ditch". Who would be that insane to lie down in a ditch for 10 hours — and die of pneumonia?!

Gambling prediction, gambling mathematics in general, does not lead to the same tragic consequences. I mean, some people could lose lots of money, if they bet over their heads. The stock market offers periodically the craziest cases of “predictions gone mad”; hence, financial crises, recessions, even economic depressions.

I always stress this concept I coined as a caring human: Degree of certainty. There is no absolute certainty. Everything comes in degrees of certainty, but it is never 100% guaranteed. This is the most compelling proof of the absurdity of God concept. How many times have we heard during a catastrophe: “Where was you, god?” It is all random, brother and sister of intelligently skeptical mine! That absolute certainty we call god does not exist. Take me to His face, if you can. I guarantee you, I'd beat Him up like a drum. Ay...BRRRRRRRRAHAHAHAHA!!!! Not even Satan could defend Him! Ay...que...BRRRRRRRRAHAHAHAHA....

Gambling prediction does not risk human life. Better predict the lottery than the weather!

I can answer the "accusations" (!) with ease and also peace of mind.

1) TRUTH is above anything and anybody. Communism educated me well, but only to the goal of my self-destruction. The better-educated one is the better view of The_Everything one acquires. Getting closer and closer to the truth brought one into serious trouble. Like during the Dark Ages, getting closer to the truth and expressing it was synonymous to self-destruction under Communism too.

2) On the other hand (the right hand), America offered me safe haven. But I did not come over here for that hallucinatory illusion they call heaven. I came over here for the Truth. I will not betray the Truth in order to please the sponsors of my refugee resettlement. Religious fanatics attack me, too. When you say religious fanatics, you mean Muslims in the first place. Curiously, the Muslims appreciate the fact that I treat their religion equally to any other religion, including Christianity.

There was a real human need for religion to come into existence. But that era should have ended long ago, during the time of the Renaissance. The existence of religion is illegitimate after that moment in history. Therefore each and every form of religion is bad. Religion is evil this day and age. Just look at all that religious terror and bloodbath around us.

For the record, I was religious, but not fanatically, until the year of grace 1998. That's when the Fundamental Formula of Gambling (FFG) convinced me beyond reasonable doubt that Absolute Certainty (e.g. God) represents Absolute Absurdity. And thus I started the new millennium with a clean sheet.

The time has long passed (away) to believe in grotesquely-insane stories that attempt the "truth". "A 600-year-old man performed incest with his daughters to assure the survival of human species. Actually, all life on earth is the result of inbreeding. There were millions of animals on a wooden boat, but only one couple from each species." Sheesh! We can... predict a lot more accurately how it all came to life.

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