Lottery Post Journal

Let there be power!

About 20 minutes ago, the world around me sprang to life again, with real working light bulbs and appliances and air conditioners.  After being without power for two days, one feels a leap of joy when suddenly your world is re-energized.

I still don't have my primary Internet connection, but getting power is a darn good start.  It's been a pretty tough couple of days keeping everything on the site working smoothly without power or a real Internet connection. 

Thank God I invested in a generator this year.  Despite the noise level and incredible annoyance of dealing with a maze of extension cords of every variety, I must say that the new generator saved the day.

Opera 11.5 is first browser to generate the full 6/49

I have finally found a browser that can successfully generate and load the full set of 6/49 combinations using Lottery Post's Lottery Combinations Generator!

This is no small feat, as the browser — using just some clever JavaScript code — needs to generate almost 14 million combinations, and load all those combinations into memory at one time, so that they can be displayed on the page.

For every other browser I've tested, the best they can do is generate the combos, but when it comes to loading them all onto a page, the browser page eventually runs out of memory and gives up.

What a nice surprise to see that not only can Opera finish the whole task, but it did so in tremendously good time.

Here is the summary after it finished:

Calculation time: 20.906 seconds
Load time: 34.335 seconds
Total processing time: 55.241 seconds
Numbers in set: 6
Minimum number: 1
Maximum number: 49
Sample frequency: 1
Display type: Non-scrolling
Total combinations: 13,983,816

Under one minute! WOW!

And I didn't run this on a super-fast computer — I used a 3-year-old laptop.  That's pretty incredible, considering many stand-alone programs written in a fast, compiled language would take much longer.

So then it was time to test getting those combinations from the browser into another program.  For my test, getting them into my favorite text editor (Notepad++) would do the trick.

I clicked the Select All button to select all the text, and then waited.  22 seconds later, all the combinations were highlight.  (It is important to click the button one time, and then sit back and do nothing until the browser responds.  Since it is using so much memory, it can take a while, and if you click again while the browser is "thinking", it may cancel the Select All.)

So then I pressed Ctrl+C to copy, and the browser came back to life about 25 seconds later.  The problem was that when I went into my text editor, there was nothing to paste. So copy failed.

I tried it a number of different ways, but nothing worked.  My instinct is that Windows does not let me copy that much text to the Clipboard, and so Windows is not allowing it.

But not to be deterred, I figured out another way!

I figured if I could just save the page contents as a file, I could open the file in my text editor.  So I clicked the "Opera" menu in the upper-left corner (much like the Google Chrome "wrench" button or the "Firefox" button in that browser), then selected the Page menu, and then (after about 20 seconds waiting for the Page menu to display), clicked Save As...

One of the options under Save As is to save the page as a Text file.  Perfect!

So I saved the page contents in a text file to my Desktop, then opened it in Notepad++.  Then, I just had to delete the "junk" text before and after the combinations, and there I had it — a text file with all 14 million 6/49 combinations, and which I could generate next time within about 2 minutes using Opera.

Browsers are coming along so quickly these days, becoming real workhorses capable of incredible things.  I am so happy to see that a browser — Opera 11.5 — has become the first to accomplish the milestone task of generating the full 6/49 combination set and getting the combos into a text file.

If you want to download Opera, it is available for free at: 

By the way, Opera is all-around extremely fast, and Lottery Post works very well in it.  You might see a small glitch here or there, but certainly no show-stoppers.

Comcast rolls out $10 web access for low income households

(News story link is below.  First-up is my commentary.)

This is a fabulous idea!  There's no reason it should have required a regulator to force them, it just makes sense.  All the network infrastructure is in place, and it costs very little at this point to deliver basic broadband Internet access to a house.

So now low-income households will have a means to get on the Internet too.  These days it is really impossible (OK, improbable) to use the Internet using a dial-up connection, and the Internet has become an essential tool for everyone.

Imagine being a school-age kid in a household that cannot afford Internet access because it costs $50, $75, or $100 per month.  Teachers assign homework and projects these days assuming that everyone has Internet access at home.  That kid who doesn't have it is incredibly disadvantaged vs. the rest of the class.  Even if they can go to a public library, we all know that presents a number of huge obstacles.

Now, lest you all think I have flipped my lid and gone soft, I assure you I have not.  This just makes sense.  Nobody loses anything -- in fact, the cable company will make money from it.  And the low-income households will definitely be helped.

This would be a lot different if the president suddenly ordered that the government borrow $500 billion to install Internet access for every town in America because low-income households don't have Internet access.  Don't laugh, he's proposed crap like that.  Instead, this is a win-win that directs the help at the people who demonstrably need it, without imposing new taxes or borrowing more money (God help us).

Comcast is currently in 39 states, so this will help a lot of people.  I hope other cable companies follow suit!

News story link:

Comcast rolls out $10 web access for low income households

Wahoo, Google Chrome 13 released

I have been tapping my toe waiting for Google to release version 13 of Chrome, and today they finally did.  As always, you can quickly upgrade by clicking "About Google Chrome" in the "wrench" menu.

Version 12 of Chrome had a nasty bug that forced the browser to NOT scroll down automatically on several of Lottery Post's pages.  (Like when you clicked the green arrow next to a post on the Home page.)

Version 13 thankfully fixes that problem, and the auto scrolling works again.