Everybody loves money, but you know what everybody loves even more than money? Statistics. OK, maybe that's just me. In any event, tonight there is going to be a drawing for the largest Mega Millions Jackpot -- the largest lottery jackpot in general -- in history. It's reported, at the time of this writing, to be a whopping $640 million dollars, or roughly the net worth of Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes. You can win your own Facebook co-founder('s net worth). Of course, your chances of winning are minuscule, a nice 1 to 175,711,536 or a .000000005% chance. But what fun is knowing that if you can't put it into perspective against a bunch of wacky things? Every self-respecting blog should have a list; here's ours.
The big story of the day is that two tickets matched all six numbers in last night's Mega Millions drawing, making the owners of both tickets eligible to split a $355 million jackpot. But LOST fans may rejoice in the fact that if you played Hurley's numbers -- 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42 -- in the Mega Millions sweepstakes, you're in for a small prize as well, as are thousands of other people, many of whom we're betting are LOST fans. The winning numbers for the lottery were 4, 8, 15, 25, 47, and Mega Ball 42, eerily similar to the LOST numbers already; more than 25,000 people who correctly picked three of the regular numbers plus the Mega Ball number (for LOSTies, 4, 8, 15, and 42), are eligible for a $150 prize. It's not Hurley's $114 million Mega Lotto jackpot, but it also hopefully doesn't come with all the weird unlucky paranormal stuff. (Damon Lindelof via io9; NPR)
The Incredibly Depressing Mega Millions Lottery Simulator is Rob Cockerham's statistically faithful tool that lets you experience losing money on lottery tickets over and over from the comfort of your own home. Choose five numbers and a Mega Millions number and play the numbers 1 time, 104 times (twice a week for a year) or 1040 times (two times a week for ten years) at the pull of a dropdown and the click of a mouse; you'll still lose!