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 Math Central Quandaries & Queries
 Question from Craig: I’d like to know what are the odds of a lotto machine giving out a specific 4 digit number as a quick pick? I know there are 10,000 possible 4 digit combinations. So let’s say the number is 3587 what are the odds the lotto machine spits it out EXACTLY that way on a quick pick?

Since there are 10,000 possible combinations and each is equally likely the probability that the number is drawn is $\large \frac{1}{10000} \normalsize = 0.0001.$ Hence the odds are 1 to 9,999 that you will win.

Penny

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