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Publication numberUS20080085763 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/868,975
Publication dateApr 10, 2008
Filing dateOct 9, 2007
Priority dateOct 10, 2006
Publication number11868975, 868975, US 2008/0085763 A1, US 2008/085763 A1, US 20080085763 A1, US 20080085763A1, US 2008085763 A1, US 2008085763A1, US-A1-20080085763, US-A1-2008085763, US2008/0085763A1, US2008/085763A1, US20080085763 A1, US20080085763A1, US2008085763 A1, US2008085763A1
InventorsBhupinder Randhawa
Original AssigneeBhupinder Randhawa
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Systems, Apparatus and Methods for Ticket Sales for On-Line Lotteries and On-Line Games
US 20080085763 A1
Abstract
Various systems, apparatus and methods for purchasing tickets for on-line lottery and on-line game without the use of a selection slip are disclosed. A player uses a player terminal to make selections for the on-line lottery or on-line game. The player's selections are recorded in a lottery computer system in a ticket purchase voucher record for a ticket purchase voucher. A ticket purchase voucher code is assigned to the ticket purchase voucher and the player is provided with a mechanism for identifying the ticket purchase voucher code to a ticket vending terminal. The player may be provided with a printable version of the ticket purchase voucher that includes a machine readable form of the ticket purchase voucher code. The player may be provided with a version of the ticket purchase voucher code that may be transmitted to a ticket vending terminal in a radio frequency, optical or electronic signal.
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Claims(22)
1. A method of issuing tickets comprising:
receiving a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request containing proposed ticket information from a player terminal;
creating a ticket purchase voucher record;
recording at least one selection based on the proposed ticket information;
generating a ticket purchase voucher code and recording the ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record;
transmitting the ticket purchase voucher code to the player terminal;
receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from a ticket vending terminal;
creating at least one ticket record based on the selection recorded in the ticket purchase voucher record;
generating Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to the ticket record; and
transmitting Ticket Receipt Data to the ticket vending terminal.
2. The method of claim 1 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and including:
recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and
after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code:
creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and
transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.
3. The method of claim 1 wherein the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
4. The method of claim 1 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
5. The method of claim 1 further including:
before receiving the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request:
receiving an account identification code from the player terminal; and
identifying a player account associated with the account identification code;
identifying the player account in the ticket purchase voucher record; and
associating the ticket record with the player's account.
6. The method of claim 5 further including:
associating a payment service with the player account; and
after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket vending terminal and before transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data, obtaining payment from the payment service.
7. The method of claim 5 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and including:
recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and
after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code:
creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and
transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.
8. The method of claim 5 wherein the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
9. The method of claim 5 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
10. A method of issuing tickets for an on-line lottery comprising:
providing a lottery computer system including a player interface, a lottery database and a ticket server;
receiving a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request, wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request originates from a player terminal communicating with the player interface, wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies at least one selection for the on-line lottery;
creating a ticket purchase voucher record in the lottery database based on the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request;
recording at least one played number set corresponding to the selection in the ticket purchase voucher record;
generating a ticket purchase voucher code;
recording the ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record;
generating a ticket purchase voucher, wherein the ticket purchase voucher includes a machine readable version of the ticket purchase voucher code;
transmitting the ticket purchase voucher to the player terminal;
receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from a ticket vending terminal communicating with the ticket server;
creating a ticket record corresponding to the selection;
generating Ticket Receipt Data based on the ticket record; and
transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data to the ticket vending terminal.
11. The method of claim 10 further including:
before receiving the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request:
receiving an account identification code from the player terminal; and
identifying a player account associated with the account identification code;
identifying the player account in the ticket purchase voucher record; and
associating the ticket record with the player's account.
12. The method of claim 11 further including:
associating a payment service with the player account; and
after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket vending terminal and before transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data, obtaining payment from the payment service.
13. The method of claim 11 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and including:
recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and
after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code:
creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and
transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.
14. The method of claim 11 wherein the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
15. The method of claim 11 wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.
16. The method of claim 10 wherein the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be reproduced at the player terminal in a machine readable form.
17. The method of claim 16 wherein the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be printed in paper form at the player terminal and wherein a printed version of the ticket purchase voucher includes the machine readable version of the ticket purchase voucher code.
18. The method of claim 17 wherein the ticket purchase voucher code is printed as a barcode on the printed version of ticket purchase voucher.
19. The method of claim 16 wherein the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be displayed on a display of a player terminal such that the ticket purchase voucher code may be scanned from the display and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to scan the ticket purchase voucher code from the display.
20. The method of claim 16 wherein the ticket purchase voucher code may be reproduced at the player terminal in a radio frequency signal and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to receive the radio frequency signal.
21. The method of claim 16 wherein the ticket purchase voucher code may be reproduced at the player terminal in an optical signal and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to receive the optical signal.
22. The method of claim 16 wherein the ticket purchase voucher code may be reproduced at the player terminal in an electronic signal and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to receive the electronic signal.
Description
FIELD

The present invention relates to on-line lotteries and on-line games. More particularly it relates to systems, apparatus and methods that allow a player to purchase lottery tickets without the use of a selection slip.

BACKGROUND

Many governmentally operated or licensed authorities operate a lottery in which a player is permitted to select a set of played numbers from a larger set of numbers. The lottery operators use a lottery computer system to operate the lottery.

To participate in the lottery, a player selects a set of played numbers from a larger set of numbers. The player typically selects the set of played numbers by marking the played numbers on a selection slip. The selection slip is processed using a ticket vending terminal and the lottery computer system. If the selection slip is properly marked, the player is able to purchase a ticket for one or more draws of the lottery. Information about the ticket, including the played numbers is recorded in the lottery computer system. The player is issued a ticket receipt setting out the selected played numbers and other information about the player's ticket. These lotteries, some examples of which are described in greater detail below, are referred to herein as on-line lotteries. The process of marking a selection slip to select a set of played numbers can be tedious and is prone to error.

Accordingly, it is desirable to provide a system for the sale of lottery tickets that permits a player to purchase a ticket from a ticket vendor with a set of played numbers chosen by the player, but without using a manually marked paper selection slip.

In addition to on-line lotteries, some lottery operators operate on-line games, in which a lottery player may purchase a ticket for an on-line game by placing a bet based on the outcome of one or more events, such as sporting events. Typically, the player predicts the outcome of one or more events and is awarded a prize if his predictions meet criteria set by the lottery operator. In many cases, the player marks the prediction on a selection slip, as in the case of an on-line lottery. The player presents the selection slip to a ticket vendor, who uses a ticket vending terminal to process the selection slip and gives the player an on-line game ticket receipt that sets out the details of the player's predictions and other details of the player's ticket, such as the amount of the player's bet. As with on-line lotteries, the process of marking a selection slip for an on-line game can be tedious and prone to error. It is desirable to provide a system that would allow a player to purchase a ticket for an on-line game without the use of a selection slip, if a lottery operator offers on-line games.

SUMMARY

The present invention provides a system for operating an on-line lottery in which players may purchase tickets for one or more on-line lotteries or on-line games without using a selection slip.

A first aspect of the invention allows a player to obtain a ticket purchase voucher which the player may subsequently use to purchase a ticket.

In one embodiment, a player uses a player terminal to select a set of played numbers for an on-line lottery. The player terminal is coupled to a lottery computer system operated by the lottery operator. Proposed ticket information relating to the player's selections is recorded in the lottery computer system. The player uses the player terminal to print a ticket purchase voucher. The proposed ticket information recorded in the lottery computer system includes a ticket purchase voucher code that can be used to identify the proposed ticket information. The ticket purchase voucher code is set out on the ticket purchase voucher in a machine readable form. For example, the voucher code may be set out on the ticket purchase voucher in the form of a barcode, multi-dimensional barcode, machine readable ink or magnetic ink characters or any other machine readable symbols or characters. The voucher code may also optionally be set out on the ticket purchase voucher in a human readable form. Optionally, other information, including some or all of the proposed ticket information, may be set out on the ticket purchase voucher.

In some embodiments, the player accesses the lottery computer system using a player terminal. The player is presented with a form, page or screen that allows the player to make selections relating to an on-line lottery or an on-line game. The player makes the selections and requests a ticket purchase voucher corresponding to the selections. The ticket terminal transmits a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request to the lottery computer system. The Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information. The proposed ticket information includes the player's selections. The lottery computer system records the proposed ticket information in a ticket purchase voucher record. The lottery computer system also generates a ticket purchase voucher code and records the ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record. The lottery computer system generates a ticket purchase voucher in a format suitable for printing at the player's terminal and transmits the ticket purchase voucher to the player's terminal. The player may print the ticket purchase voucher.

In some embodiments, the player accesses the lottery computer system using a web browser operating on the player's terminal. The lottery computer system includes a player interface configured to communicate with the player's terminal. The player interface may include a website that includes webpages that can be displayed in the player's web browser. Some or all of the webpages may be dynamically generated webpages. The webpages include ticket purchase voucher generation pages, which allow a player to make selections relating to on-line lotteries or on-line games.

In some embodiments, a ticket purchase voucher generation program running or operating at the player terminal communicates with the lottery computer system. The lottery computer system communicates with the ticket purchase voucher generation program to receive the player selections for the on-line lottery or on-line game and to transmit a ticket purchase voucher code to the player terminal, where a ticket purchase voucher including the ticket purchase voucher code may be printed.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher may be generated at the player's terminal. The player makes selections for an on-line lottery or on-line game at the player terminal using a ticket purchase voucher generation program operating on the terminal or a computer coupled to the player terminal. The player terminal is also coupled to the lottery computer system. The lottery computer system receives and records proposed ticket information based on the player's selections and transmits a ticket purchase voucher code to the player terminal. The ticket purchase voucher generation program operating on the player terminal is configured to generate a ticket purchase voucher and to allow the player to print the ticket purchase voucher including the ticket purchase voucher code. A program (including any type of executable program such as a macro, script or other executable in any programming language) operating on the player terminal, including any program operating within a web browser is within the meaning of a ticket purchase voucher generation program.

Another aspect of the invention allows a player to purchase a ticket for an on-line lottery or on-line game using a ticket purchase voucher.

In one embodiment, the player presents the ticket purchase voucher to a lottery ticket vendor. The vendor operates a ticket vending terminal that includes a scanner configured to read the ticket purchase voucher code printed on the ticket purchase voucher. The vendor scans the ticket purchase voucher code, which is transmitted from the ticket vending terminal to the lottery computer system. The lottery computer system obtains a ticket purchase voucher record corresponding to the ticket purchase voucher code and issues a ticket based on the proposed ticket information recorded in the ticket purchase voucher record. In conjunction with issuing a ticket, the lottery computer system transmits ticket receipt data to the ticket vending terminal. A ticket receipt is printed at the ticket vending terminal using the ticket receipt data. The player receives the ticket receipt as proof of the ticket.

In another aspect of the invention, a single ticket vending terminal may be used to purchase more than one ticket for on-line lotteries and/or on-line games.

In some embodiments, a player makes selections for more than one ticket at a player terminal under the control of a lottery computer system. The player is provided with one or more ticket vending terminal generation pages for making the selections. For example, some ticket purchase voucher generation forms may permit the player to make selections for more than ticket. Other ticket purchase voucher generation forms may allow the player to make selections for only one ticket. As the player makes selections on each ticket purchase voucher form, the player may save the selections using a save feature or control in the ticket purchase voucher generation forms. When the player requests to save his selections for one or more tickets, the ticket vending terminal transmits proposed ticket information about the tickets to the lottery computer system, which records the proposed ticket information.

When the player has finished making selections for tickets, the player requests a voucher for all of the tickets. The lottery computer system stores and records a ticket purchase voucher record and associates the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets with the ticket purchase record. The lottery computer system records a ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record. The lottery computer system transmits a ticket purchase voucher including the ticket purchase voucher to the player terminal. As described above, the ticket purchase voucher code is included in the ticket purchase voucher is included in the ticket purchase voucher in a format that is suitable for scanning or reading by ticket vending terminal coupled to the lottery computer system.

The player can use the ticket purchase voucher to purchase all of the tickets in one transaction.

In some embodiments, the player presents the ticket purchase voucher to a ticket vendor, the ticket vendor uses a ticket vending terminal to scan the machine readable ticket purchase voucher code on the ticket purchase voucher. The ticket vending terminal transmits the ticket purchase voucher code to the lottery computer system. The lottery computer system uses the ticket purchase voucher code to recall the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets selected by the player. The lottery computer system that issues each of the tickets and transmits ticket receipt data for each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal. A ticket receipt is printed at the ticket vending terminal corresponding to the ticket receipt data for each ticket and provided to the player.

In another embodiment in which a single ticket purchase voucher can be used to purchase multiple tickets, proposed ticket information is initially recorded at the player's terminal for each of the tickets. A ticket purchase voucher generation program may be operated at the player's terminal to provide ticket purchase voucher generation pages to the player, allowing the player to make selections for tickets. When the player has finished selecting tickets, the ticket purchase voucher generation program allows the player to request a ticket purchase voucher for the tickets. In response to the request, the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets is transmitted to the lottery computer system, which then records the proposed ticket information and associates it with a ticket purchase voucher record.

Ticket purchase voucher may be configured for a single use or for multiple uses. For example, a ticket purchase voucher for an on-line lottery may be configured to allow the player to purchase a ticket for the player's favorite numbers for two draws. The lottery computer system may retain a ticket purchase voucher record for the ticket purchase voucher indefinitely, allowing the player to purchase a ticket for the two following draws of the lottery at any time. Alternatively, the ticket purchase voucher may expire at a particular time or on the occurrence of some event. Expiry conditions may be recorded in the ticket purchase voucher record and the lottery computer system may refuse to issue a ticket using a ticket purchase voucher if any expiry condition is met. For example, a ticket purchase voucher may expire on a fixed date, after a particular number of uses, if it has not been used for a specified time period or on the occurrence of some other event.

In another aspect of the invention, the player may be able to create an account using the lottery computer system and may be able to associate a multiple ticket purchase vouchers with the account. When the player creates a ticket purchase voucher, information about the ticket purchase voucher is associated with the player's account. Subsequently, when the player accesses the player's account, the player may be able to re-print a ticket purchase voucher, delete ticket purchase voucher records that the player does not wish to use again, or modify a ticket purchase voucher record to change the selections for tickets that can be bought with the ticket purchase voucher. To modify a ticket purchase voucher record, the player may access a ticket purchase voucher generation page that sets out the players previous selections for the ticket purchase voucher. The player can change the selections and then request that the ticket purchase voucher record be updated to reflect the changes. Optionally, the lottery computer system may be configured to assign a new ticket purchase voucher code to a modified ticket purchase voucher and to permit only the new ticket purchase voucher to be used in order to prevent a player from accidentally using a ticket purchase voucher printed before the modifications. This may be desirable if a ticket purchase voucher has the selections for the ticket purchase voucher set out on it. The ticket purchase voucher will be inaccurate if the selections have changed.

Another aspect of the invention provides a method of issuing tickets comprising: receiving a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request containing proposed ticket information from a player terminal; creating a ticket purchase voucher record; recording at least one selection based on the proposed ticket information; generating a ticket purchase voucher code and recording the ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record; transmitting the ticket purchase voucher code to the player terminal; receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from a ticket vending terminal; creating at least one ticket record based on the selection recorded in the ticket purchase voucher record; generating Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to the ticket record; and transmitting Ticket Receipt Data to the ticket vending terminal.

In the some embodiments, the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and including: recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code: creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.

In the some embodiments, the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

In the some embodiments, Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery. In such embodiments, recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

In the some embodiments, the method includes: before receiving the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request: receiving an account identification code from the player terminal; identifying a player account associated with the account identification code; identifying the player account in the ticket purchase voucher record; and associating the ticket record with the player's account.

In the some embodiments, the method includes: associating a payment service with the player account; and after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket vending terminal and before transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data, obtaining payment from the payment service.

In the some embodiments, Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and the method includes: recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code: creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.

In the some embodiments, the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and the method includes recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

In the some embodiments, Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

Another aspect of the invention provides a method of issuing tickets for an on-line lottery comprising: providing a lottery computer system including a player interface, a lottery database and a ticket server; receiving a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request, wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request originates from a player terminal communicating with the player interface, wherein the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies at least one selection for the on-line lottery; creating a ticket purchase voucher record in the lottery database based on the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request; recording at least one played number set corresponding to the selection in the ticket purchase voucher record; generating a ticket purchase voucher code; recording the ticket purchase voucher code in the ticket purchase voucher record; generating a ticket purchase voucher, wherein the ticket purchase voucher includes a machine readable version of the ticket purchase voucher code; transmitting the ticket purchase voucher to the player terminal; receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from a ticket vending terminal communicating with the ticket server; creating a ticket record corresponding to the selection; generating Ticket Receipt Data based on the ticket record; and transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data to the ticket vending terminal.

In some embodiments, the method includes: before receiving the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request: receiving an account identification code from the player terminal; and identifying a player account associated with the account identification code; identifying the player account in the ticket purchase voucher record; and associating the ticket record with the player's account.

In some embodiments, the method includes: associating a payment service with the player account; and after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket vending terminal and before transmitting the Ticket Receipt Data, obtaining payment from the payment service.

In some embodiments, the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request includes proposed ticket information for two or more tickets and including: recording at least one selection corresponding to the proposed ticket information for each of the tickets; and after receiving the ticket purchase voucher code: creating a ticket record for each of the tickets; and transmitting Ticket Receipt Data corresponding to each of the tickets to the ticket vending terminal.

In some embodiments, the proposed ticket information identifies an on-line lottery and a played number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes recording the played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

In some embodiments, the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request identifies an on-line lottery and a request for an automatically selected number set for the on-line lottery and wherein recording at least one selection includes generating an automatically selected played number set and recording the automatically selected played number set in the ticket purchase voucher record.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be reproduced at the player terminal in a machine readable form.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be printed in paper form at the player terminal and wherein a printed version of the ticket purchase voucher includes the machine readable version of the ticket purchase voucher code.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher code is printed as a barcode on the printed version of ticket purchase voucher.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher is adapted to be displayed on a display of a player terminal such that the ticket purchase voucher code may be scanned from the display and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to scan the ticket purchase voucher code from the display.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher code may be reproduced at the player terminal in a radio frequency signal and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to receive the radio frequency signal.

In some embodiments, the ticket purchase voucher code may be reproduced at the player terminal in an optical signal and wherein the ticket vending terminal is adapted to receive the optical signal.

Additional aspects of the present invention are identified below in the description of several example embodiments.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Several exemplary embodiments of the present invention will now be described in detail with reference to the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a block diagram of an embodiment of the present invention;

FIGS. 2 to 5 illustrate example ticket purchase voucher creation screens and a ticket purchase vouchers according to the embodiment of FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 illustrates part of a lottery database according to the exemplary embodiment of FIG. 1;

FIG. 7 illustrates a method for creating and printing a ticket purchase voucher;

FIG. 8 illustrates a welcome web page of a player website of the embodiment of FIG. 1;

FIG. 9 illustrates a ticket purchase voucher selection page of the player website;

FIG. 10 illustrates a method for a player to purchase a ticket and or a lottery operator to correspondingly sell the ticket to the player; and

FIG. 11 illustrates a ticket purchase voucher for purchasing multiple tickets.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EXAMPLE EMBODIMENTS

As used herein, the word “exemplary” refers to examples of various items and does not denote a preferred or necessary feature of any embodiment or of the invention.

A first example embodiment of the invention will be described with reference to several exemplary on-line lotteries and on-line games.

The first exemplary on-line lottery will be referred to as Lotto 7/47. In this on-line lottery, a lottery player selects a set of seven different played numbers between 1 and 47 (inclusive of numbers 1 and 47). The set of seven played numbers is referred to as a Lotto 7/47 played number set. Subsequently, a lottery operator conducts a draw to select a set of winning numbers consisting of seven different regular numbers and a bonus number, also between 1 and 47. The bonus number is different from all of the winning numbers. The player may win different prizes if his played numbers match the winning numbers and/or the bonus number in various winning combinations, as follows:

Winning Combination Prize Won
7/7 regular numbers Grand Prize
6/7 regular numbers and Second Prize
bonus number
6/7 regular numbers Third Prize
5/7 regular numbers Fourth Prize
4/7 regular numbers Fifth Prize
3/7 regular numbers and Sixth Prize
bonus number
3/7 regular numbers Free ticket

Some of the prizes a player may win in this exemplary on-line lottery are shared prizes. Shared prizes are calculated by first determining a total prize amount for a particular winning combination and then dividing the total prize value by the number of tickets that have the winning combination to determine what share of the total prize amount each ticket will win. The Grand Prize is a shared prize and the total prize value for the Grand Prize is determined by the lottery operator prior to each draw of the on-line lottery. For example, if the total prize value for the Grand Prize is $10 million and 4 tickets have the 7/7 regular numbers winning combination, then each ticket wins $2.5 million. Some shared prizes may be pari-mutuel prizes, for which the total prize amount may be determined as a portion of the ticket sales revenue for the on-line lottery. The second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth prizes are pari-mutuel prizes. One of the prizes is a fixed prize with the same prize being awarded for each ticket having the specified winning combination. The free ticket prize for the 3/7 regular numbers winning combination is a fixed prize. The present invention may be used with on-line lotteries and games having any type or any combination of types of prizes.

For the purpose of this exemplary embodiment of the invention, the lottery operator conducts a draw of the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery each week on Friday at 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.

The second exemplary on-line lottery will be referred to as Tag. In this on-line lottery, a six digit played number is automatically selected for the lottery player. The played number may be referred to as a Tag played number. The single six digit played number is a played number set for the Tag on-line lottery and may also be referred to as a Tag played number set. Subsequently, the lottery operator selects a six digit winning number for the Tag on-line lottery. The winning number may be referred to as a Tag winning number or a Tag winning number set. The player may win different prizes if various winning combinations of digits in his played number match corresponding digits in the winning number, as follows:

Winning combination Prize Won
All six digits $250,000
Last five digits $1,000
Last four digits $100
Last three digits $25
First digit and last digit $5
First digit Free play of host on-
line lottery with Tag
Last digit Free play of host on-
line lottery with Tag

This exemplary Tag on-line lottery may only be played in conjunction with another on-line lottery, such as the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery described above. The Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery is referred to as a host on-line lottery and the Tag on-line lottery is referred to as an associated on-line lottery. A player may request that one or more Tag played number sets be added to a ticket for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery. On draw dates for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery, the lottery operator draws a winning number set for the host Lotto 7/47 and also draws a winning number for the associated Tag on-line lottery.

The prize for matching the first or the last digit of the Tag winning number is a free play of the host on-line lottery in the next draw after the ticket is redeemed, including a free played number for the Tag on-line lottery draw on the same date. Players who elect to play the Tag on-line lottery on a ticket may win a prize in the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery, the Tag on-line lottery or in both on-line lotteries.

The third exemplary on-line lottery will be referred to as Keno. In this on-line lottery, a lottery player is asked to select a play category between two and ten. If the player chooses play category two, he then chooses a set of two different played numbers between 1 and 70 (inclusive of numbers 1 and 70). Similarly, if the player chooses play category ten, the player chooses a set of ten different played numbers between 1 and 70. Similarly, if the player chooses any of play categories three to nine, the player chooses a corresponding amount of different played numbers between 1 and 70. The player's set of played numbers is referred to as a Keno played number set. Subsequently, the lottery operator conducts a draw to select a winning number set consisting of 20 different winning numbers between 1 and 70. The player may win a prize depending on the play category chosen and how many of the played numbers match the winning numbers. Various winning combinations are defined as follows:

Play Category
(played numbers Winning
in set) combination Wager multiplier
2 2 of 20 7
3 3 of 20 25
4 4 of 20 100
5 5 of 20 250
4 of 20 5
6 6 of 20 1,000
5 of 20 25
7 7 of 20 5,000
6 of 20 50
5 of 20 5
8 8 of 20 25,000
7 of 20 200
6 of 20 10
9 9 of 20 50,000
8 of 20 1,000
7 of 20 100
6 of 20 5
10 10 of 20  250,000
9 of 20 5,000
8 of 20 200
7 of 20 25
0 of 20 2

If the player's played number set includes a winning combination, the player is awarded a prize equal to the amount wagered by the player for the set of played numbers multiplied by the wager multiplier. For example, a player who chooses play category seven will choose a set of seven different played numbers between 1 and 70. In this exemplary Keno on-line lottery, the player may wager from $1, $2, $5 or $10 for each set of played numbers. If the seven played numbers match seven of the twenty winning numbers, the player wins 5,000 times the amount wagered.

For the purpose of this example, the lottery operator conducts a draw of the Keno on-line lottery every day at 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.

The Keno on-line lottery is not a host lottery for the Tag on-line lottery. In an alternative embodiment of the invention, the Keno on-line lottery could also be a host lottery for the Tag on-line lottery.

A played number set or played number for an on-line lottery that includes a winning combination may be referred to as a winning played number set or as a winning played number. A ticket that includes at least one winning played number set or winning played number may be referred to as a winning on-line lottery ticket, a winning lottery ticket or more generally as a winning ticket.

Two exemplary on-line games used in this description of exemplary embodiments of the invention will be referred to as Sports Line and Over/Under. In these exemplary on-line games, each week the lottery operator identifies a number of sporting events and sets various odds corresponding to various possible outcomes of the events. For example, part of a list of odds may include the following events and corresponding odds for the Sports Line and the Over/Under on-line games:

LIST 8845 (November 11-Nov. 17, 2005)
Sports
Teams Line Over/Under
Event Time Visitor Home V T H O # U
Saturday November 12, 2005
College Football
17 12:00 p Texas A&M Oklahoma 5.2 4.0 1.2 1.7 36.5 1.7
18 12:00 p Maryland North 2.6 3.0 2.0 1.7 37.5 1.7
Carolina
23  2:00 p Kentucky Vanderbilt 5.0 3.9 1.3 1.7 33.5 1.7
30  6:00 p Washington Arizona 5.2 4.0 1.2 1.7 36.5 1.7
NHL Hockey
44  1:00 p Washington New 2.2 6.5 1.5 1.7 6.5 1.7
Jersey
45  7:00 p Toronto Montreal 2.0 6.0 1.6 1.7 5.5 1.7
Sunday November 13, 2005
NFL Football
56  1:00 p Kansas City Buffalo 2.4 2.8 2.3 1.7 43.5 1.7
57  1:00 p San Chicago 5.2 4.0 1.2 1.7 44.5 1.7
Francisco
60  9:00 p Dallas Phila- 2.5 2.9 2.1 1.7 43.5 1.7
delphia
NHL Hockey
87  8:00 p Dallas Anaheim 1.7 6.0 1.9 1.7 5.5 1.7
88 10:00 p Detroit Vancouver 1.9 6.0 2.0 1.8 5.5 1.6

The list of events may be referred to herein as an event list. The odds for the Sports Line on-line game are set out under the three columns labeled “V”, “T” and “H” under the heading “Sports Line”. For each event, three possible outcomes may occur: “V” means that the visiting team wins the event; “T” means that the two teams will tie and “H” means that the home team will win the event. The definition of a win or tie is set by the lottery operator and may not match the rules used in the actual event. For example, in this exemplary Sports Line on-line game, for NFL football games the lottery operator has defined a tie as the teams having three or fewer points separating them in the final score. For some events, a tie may not be defined—such as for baseball games, where the rules do not provide for tie games. The odds indicate the lottery operator's estimate of how likely each outcome is. A higher value indicates that the lottery operator believes the outcome is less likely to occur.

In this exemplary Sports Line on-line game, the lottery operator has specified that a player may make a bet by selecting between three and six events and specifying a wager amount. If the player correctly predicts the outcome of all of the selected events, the player wins the bet and wins a prize. The predictions made by the player are collectively referred to as a Sports Line prediction set.

A payout value for the Sports Line prediction set is calculated by multiplying the player's wager by the odds for all of the predicted outcomes. For example, if a player wagers $5 and predicts that Syracuse will beat Pittsburgh in event 12, Nashville will beat Colorado in event 33 and that Dallas will tie Tampa Bay in event 43, then the payout value is $5×4.0×3.0×1.2=$72. If the player successfully predicts the outcome of all three games, the player receives the payout value as his or her prize.

The odds for the Over/Under on-line game are set out under the three columns marked “O”, “#” and “U”. The value in the “#” column indicates the threshold number of points. A player may predict that the combined scores of the teams in each event will be over this threshold number of points or under it. The outcome of the event is “Over” if the total points scored by the teams is over the threshold. The outcome of the event is “Under” if the total points scored by the teams is under the threshold. For example, in event 32, a player who wishes to make a bet using the over/under odds for this event may bet that Washington and Toronto will score over or under 5.5 goals in their hockey game. In this exemplary Over/Under on-line game, the player makes a bet by selecting between two and six events and predicting whether the outcome will be Over or Under the threshold in each event. The player also selects a wager amount for the bet. The predictions made by the player are collectively referred to as an Over/Under prediction set. A payout value for the Over/Under prediction set is determined by multiplying the player's wager by the odds of the all of the predicted outcomes. The player wins the bet and is entitled to receive the payout value if all of the player's predictions are correct.

In event list 8845, each event is shown with odds for the Sports Line on-line game and for the Over/Under on-line game. In this example, the two on-line games are separate and a lottery operator may optionally use different selection slips to allow players to make bets in the different on-line games. Alternatively, a single selection slip allowing bets to be made on either or both of the on-line games may be used. In another on-line game, players could be permitted to make bets that have both Sports Line and Over/Under outcomes selected.

In this example system 100, the lottery operator provides event lists on a weekly basis. In other embodiments, the lottery operator may provide event lists which have time periods that overlap with other event lists, or may provide events lists that have some events in common. In other embodiments, the lottery operator may not divide events into lists and may simply having single event list. In embodiments in which players will be permitted to purchase on-line game tickets using selection slips in addition to using the systems, apparatus and methods disclosed herein, the lottery operator will typically identify events as part of an event list to permit the event list to be identified on a selection slip.

An on-line game ticket on which a player has won his or her bet may be referred to as a winning on-line game ticket, a winning game ticket or more generally as a winning ticket. In both the Sports Line and Over/Under on-line games described above, all of the predictions made by a player in the prediction set must be correct for the player to win the bet. In other embodiments, an on-line game ticket will be a winning on-line game ticket as long as the prediction set on the ticket (or at least one of the prediction sets, if multiple predictions sets are permitted on a single ticket) matches the appropriate corresponding criteria set by the lottery operator.

The present invention allows a player to purchase a ticket for an on-line lottery or on-line game without using a selection slip. In the first example embodiment described herein, the player first establishes a player account with the lottery operator. The player then obtains a ticket purchase voucher using a player computer system. The ticket purchase voucher encodes information for a proposed ticket. The player then presents the ticket purchase voucher to a lottery retailer, who uses the ticket purchase voucher to sell a ticket to the player. The player receives a ticket receipt setting out information about the ticket.

The lottery operator operates a lottery computer system. In the present embodiment, the lottery computer system includes a player account server. A lottery player uses a player terminal to access the player account server and to create a player account. Each player account has an account identification code or user name. The account identification code for each account is unique (with respect to the account identification code for all other player accounts created in the particular embodiment) and may consist of any combination or permutation of letters or numerals. In this description of the first example embodiment, several exemplary player accounts will be described. The account identification codes for these exemplary player accounts include KARINA1022, BRIAN237 and SAMANTHA.

In any particular embodiment of the invention, a lottery operator may impose requirements on the account identification codes that players may use. For example, a lottery operator may set a minimum or maximum number of characters for an account identification code. In the present embodiment, an account identification code may include the same character (i.e. the same letter or numeral) more than once.

In other embodiments, the lottery operator may require that each character in an account identification code be different from the other characters in an account identification code. This requirement may be imposed in the lottery operator also permits players to purchase tickets using a selection slip with account identification region, as is described in PCT patent application No. PCT/CA2006/000270, International Publication Number WO 2006/092039A1.

FIG. 1 illustrates a system 100 that includes a lottery computer system 102, ticket vending terminals 104 and player terminals 106. A system according to the present embodiment will include at least one ticket vending terminal 104 and at least one player terminal 106.

The lottery computer system 102 is operated by a lottery operator (not shown), who may operate various types of on-line lotteries and on-line games, including the exemplary on-line lotteries and on-line games described above and other on-line lotteries or on-line games.

The ticket vending terminals 104 are operated by ticket vendors (not shown). Each ticket vending terminal 104 is coupled, or is capable of being coupled, to the lottery computer system 102 to permit data communication between the ticket vending terminal 104 and the lottery computer system 102. Some of the ticket vending terminals 104 may be coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through a private communication network 108. The private communication network 108 may be a wide area network (WAN), a private data communication network comprising proprietary (owned, rented or leased) data lines or any other type of data network. The private communications network 108 may be a combination of two or more of these and other types of data communication networks. Ticket vending terminals 104 b and 104 c are coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through private communication network 108.

Some or all of the ticket vending terminals 104 may be coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through dial-up telephone connections or another type of point-to-point connection that permits data communication between the lottery computer system 102 and the ticket vending terminal 104. For example, ticket vending terminal 104 a is coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through a dial-up telephone connection 109, which may be maintained at all times or may be established when required to allow data communication between ticket vending terminal 104 c and lottery computer system 102.

Some or all of the ticket vending terminals 104 may be coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through a publicly accessible communications network (a “public network”), such as the Internet. For example, ticket vending terminal 104 d is coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through public network 110. Ticket vending terminals 104 coupled to the lottery computer system 102 through the public network 110 may be coupled using a virtual private network or another secure communications protocol or methodology.

The connections between the lottery computer system 102 and the various ticket vending terminals 104 need not be the same. Different connections may be made using different types of data communications networks and lines. A ticket vending terminal 104 may be coupled, or may be capable of being coupled, to the lottery computer system 102 in more than one way, to provide an alternative method of communication if a primary method has failed or is unavailable.

The connection between lottery computer system 102 and any particular ticket vending terminal 104 may be persistent or it may be made intermittently as required for data communication between the lottery computer system 102 and the ticket vending terminal 104. If the coupling includes a publicly accessible network, such as the Internet, communications between the lottery computer system 102 and any of the ticket vending terminals 104 may be secured using an encryption system or other security technique. A security technique or mechanism may optionally be used to secure all communications between the lottery computer system 102 and any ticket vending terminal 104, regardless of the type of connection between the lottery computer system 102 and the ticket vending terminal 104.

The ticket vending terminals 104 are used by ticket vendors to sell tickets and provide ticket receipts to players. Each ticket vending terminal 104 (or at least some of the ticket vending terminals 104) includes a scanner or scanning device capable of reading or scanning machine readable information from a ticket purchase voucher. The sale of tickets to players is further described below.

Lottery computer system 102 may be coupled to some or all of the player terminals 106 through public network 110. Some player terminals 106 may also be coupled to the lottery computer system 102 directly (for example, using a dial-up connection) or through another network. Each of the player terminals 106 is capable of communicating with lottery computer system 102 and typically includes several output devices such as a display screen and a printer. Each player terminal 106 includes a printer that can be used to print a ticket purchase voucher. In addition, each player terminal includes one or more input devices (such as a keypad, keyboard, computer mouse or remote control device). A player terminal 106 may be any type of device that is capable of being coupled to and communicating with the lottery computer system 102. For example, different player terminals 106 may be personal computers, Internet-enabled television sets, Internet-enabled set-top-boxes used with cable, satellite or other digital communication systems, portable wireless communications devices such as personal data assistant (PDA) devices, cellular phones and wireless portable computers.

When system 100 is in operation, a player uses a player terminal 106 to access a ticket purchase voucher creation page 112 (FIG. 2) accessible on the lottery operator's website. The player uses the ticket purchase voucher creation page 112 to obtain a ticket purchase voucher 113. The ticket purchase voucher 113 includes a ticket purchase voucher code 136 (FIG. 2) on it in a machine-readable format, such as a bar code. The player then presents the ticket purchase voucher to a ticket vendor who operates a ticket vending terminal 104. The ticket vendor uses the ticket vending terminal 104 to process the ticket purchase voucher 113 and to issue a ticket receipt 114 to the player.

Reference is next made to FIG. 2, which illustrates a ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery, a ticket purchase voucher 117 for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery and a corresponding ticket receipt 118.

Ticket purchase voucher creation pages 112 are web pages that are accessible on the lottery operator's website. A lottery operator will provide a ticket purchase creation page 112 for each on-line lottery (or on-line game) with which it uses the present invention. A lottery operator accesses the ticket purchase voucher creation pages 112 using a web browser operating on the player's terminal 106. The player completes the ticket purchase voucher creation page 112 and then uses it to create a ticket purchase voucher 113.

Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 is displayed on a display screen (not shown) of player terminal 106 b, in the example of FIG. 2. Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 includes four played number selection boards 121, 122, 123 and 124 in which a player may manually select up to four played number sets for a Lotto 7/47 ticket. Ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 also has an auto-pick selection field 126 in which a player can select from zero to ten additional automatically selected played number sets for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery on the ticket. Ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 also includes a tag selection field 128 in which a player may select from zero to ten automatically selected Tag played number sets for the Tag on-line lottery associated with the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery. Ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 also includes an advance draw selection field 130 in which the player may choose from one to ten draws for which the player wishes to purchase a ticket.

A player named Karina Jones, who's player account has the account identification code KARINA1022, has completed the Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 to manually select two played number sets. The first played number set includes the played numbers 8, 12, 23, 29, 32, 27 and 45. The second played number set includes the played numbers 2, 18, 24, 28, 33, 39 and 42. The player has also chosen to add 1 additional automatically selected Lotto 7/47 played number set, 2 Tag played number sets and to purchase a ticket for four draws.

Once the player has completed the ticket purchase voucher creation page, the player clicks the “Create Voucher” button 119 to create the ticket purchase voucher 117. The process by which ticket purchase voucher 117 is generated is described in greater detail below in relation to method 3000. Ticket purchase voucher is printed at player terminal 106 b using a printer attached to the player terminal 106 b.

Ticket purchase voucher 117 includes a ticket information section 132 and a ticket purchase voucher code section 134.

Various information about the ticket is set out in ticket information section 132, including the player account with which a ticket purchased with the ticket purchase voucher 117 will be associated, the played number sets selected for the ticket and other information. In the present example, ticket information section 132 includes information that a lottery operator may use to confirm the details of the players selections for the ticket. The ticket information section need not contain any specific information and is optional. Preferably, the ticket information section is provided and contains information that a lottery player may use to understand the played numbers and other options for the ticket that the ticket purchase voucher can be used to purchase.

The ticket purchase code section 134 includes a machine readable ticket purchase voucher code 136 which encodes a ticket purchase voucher code. In this example, the ticket purchase voucher code is set out in a bar code. Alternatively, the ticket purchase voucher code 136 may be set out in the ticket purchase voucher code section 134 in any machine readable format, such as optically scannable characters, single or multi-dimensional bar codes or any other machine recognizable pattern or character set.

The ticket purchase voucher code 136 for any particular ticket purchase voucher is different from the ticket purchase voucher code for all other ticket purchase vouchers that are valid at the time the particular ticket purchase voucher is issued. A ticket purchase voucher is valid if it can be used to purchase a ticket for an on-line lottery or on-line game. A ticket purchase voucher may be valid indefinitely or it may expire at a particular time, or when a specific event occurs or a specific condition becomes true. Ticket purchase voucher 117 does not expire. Karina Jones can use the ticket purchase voucher to purchase a ticket for the next four draws of the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery whenever she chooses to purchase a ticket with the ticket purchase voucher.

In any embodiment, a lottery operator may choose to make a voucher valid for a fixed time period, a fixed number of uses, or may set some other expiry rule for a ticket purchase voucher. A lottery operator may choose to use any combination of expiry rules for the ticket purchase vouchers used with the lottery operator's on-line lottery and/or on-line games. For example, in another embodiment, the lottery operator may require that a ticket purchase voucher must be used within 1 week of being printed. In such an embodiment, the ticket purchase voucher may optionally set out the time at which the ticket purchase voucher expires.

The ticket information section 132 of ticket purchase voucher 117 includes the ticket purchase voucher code set out in human readable form. It is optional to print the ticket purchase voucher code in human readable form in the ticket information section 132.

FIG. 2 also illustrates a ticket receipt 118 that corresponds to the player's selections on the ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 and the ticket purchase voucher 117. The exemplary ticket receipt 118 includes the name 140 of the on-line lottery indicating that it is a ticket for the Lotto 7/47 lottery, a date range 142 indicating that it is valid for four draws between Jun. 8, 2005 and Jun. 18, 2005. At reference number 144, the ticket receipt 118 sets out the two Lotto 7/47 played number sets manually chosen by the player and an automatically selected played number set chosen for the player by the lottery computer system 102. The automatically selected Lotto 7/47 played number set consists of the played numbers 12, 17, 21, 29, 32, 37 and 43. At 148, ticket receipt 118 sets out two Tag played numbers, 398587 and 957238, for the Tag on-line lottery and the word “Played” to indicate that the player has chosen to participate in the associated Tag on-line lottery.

At 156, the ticket receipt sets out Karina Jones' account identification code KARINA1022. Optionally, a ticket receipt may set out part of a player's account identification code or another datum related to the player such as the player's name.

Ticket receipt 118 also contains a human readable ticket code 150, which in this example is a sixteen digit number set out in four sets of four digits: 5933-3748-0958-3924. A ticket code is assigned by the lottery computer system 102 to every ticket that is issued. In this exemplary embodiment, the ticket code is printed on the ticket receipt 114 in a human-readable form. The ticket code is also set out in a machine readable bar code 158, allowing the ticket code to be scanned by a machine, such as a ticket vending terminal 104. In alternative embodiments, the ticket code may be set out in only a human readable form or a machine readable form. In alternative embodiment, a first ticket code for the ticket may be set out in human readable form and a different second ticket code for the ticket may be set out in machine readable form.

Typically, the ticket code allows the ticket to be uniquely identified from all other tickets issued by the lottery operator, at least during a selected time period prior to the issuance of the ticket (for example, one year or five years). The lottery operator may select various mechanisms for assigning ticket codes for tickets, including mechanisms that encode information in the ticket code. Such encoded information may include the particular on-line lottery or on-line game that the ticket is issued for, the draws the ticket is issued for and check digits that can be used to ensure the validity of the ticket code, the ticket receipt 118 and the ticket.

Ticket receipt 118 includes a vendor terminal code 152. The vendor terminal code 152 identifies the ticket vending terminal 104 used to issue ticket receipt 114. Alternatively, the vendor terminal code 152 may identify the ticket vendor who operates the ticket vending terminal, so that tickets issued at different ticket vending terminals operated by the same ticket vendor have the same vendor terminal code. In the present exemplary embodiment, the vendor terminal code 152 uniquely identifies the specific ticket vending terminal 104 at which the ticket was issued, and accordingly different ticket vending terminals operated by the same ticket vendor are identified by different vendor terminal codes. Other ticket receipts 114 according to the present invention may not include a vendor terminal code.

Ticket receipt 118 includes a verification code 154. The verification code 154 may be used to verify the integrity of ticket receipt 114. Verification code 154 may be generated using a formula based on other components of the ticket and other data (such as the date and time on which the ticket is issued) or it may be created for the ticket randomly, pseudo-randomly (i.e. based on a seed value or other initial value), using a list of rotating values or verification codes, or using any other formula or method. The verification code 154 may be used in the place of, or in addition to, the use of check digits in the ticket code 150. Other ticket receipts 114 according to the present invention may not include a verification code.

Reference is next made to FIG. 3, which illustrates a ticket purchase voucher creation page 216 and a ticket purchase voucher 218 for the Keno on-line lottery and a corresponding ticket receipt 218.

Ticket purchase voucher creation page 216 has four boards 221, 222, 223 and 224. On each board, a player may enter up to ten played numbers that form a played number set. In boards 221-224, a player manually types in the played numbers that the player wishes to choose. This differs from the selection of played number on boards 121-124 (FIG. 2), in which a player was presented with a cell for each number that the player could choose as a played number. A lottery operator may choose to provide individual cells for the different possible numbers in a player number set or may allow a player to manually type in the numbers on any of its ticket purchase voucher creation pages. The player Karina Jones has manually selected two played number sets in boards 221 and 222.

Ticket purchase voucher creation page 216 includes an auto-pick selection field in which a player may choose a play category and wager for up to ten additional automatically selected played number sets. Optionally, a player may choose to purchase a ticket with only automatically selected played number sets and may leave all of the boards 221-224 blank.

Ticket purchase voucher creation page 216 also includes an advance draw selection field 130.

Ticket purchase voucher 217 includes information about the player's selections in a ticket information section 232 and a machine readable ticket purchase voucher code in a ticket purchase voucher code section 234.

Ticket receipt 218 sets out the details of a ticket purchase by the player using ticket purchase voucher 217. In this example, the automatically selected played number set is identified as having been automatically selected for the player.

FIG. 4 illustrates an exemplary ticket purchase voucher creation page 316, a ticket purchase voucher 317 and a corresponding ticket receipt 318 for the Sports Line on-line game.

Ticket purchase voucher creation page 316 includes an event list 321. In this embodiment, event list 321 corresponds to the events listed above in the description of the Sports Line on-line game. Event list 321 identifies the various outcomes and odds for each event that a player may select as part of a bet. To make a bet, a player selects from three to six events and selects one outcome per event. The player selects the outcomes by clicking the radio button beside the odds for the outcome.

Ticket purchase voucher creation page 316 also includes wager amount field 322, in which a player can enter a wager for a bet. In this embodiment a player may type in a wager amount of the player's choice. In other embodiments, the lottery operator may permit the player to choose from a number of predetermined wager amounts. Optionally, the lottery operator may provide options for the predetermined wager amounts in the form of radio button selections, a drop down list or another mechanism for limiting the player's choice of the wager amount. The lottery operator may have a number of predetermined amounts and may also allow a player to choose a different wager than any of the predetermined amounts.

Once a player has selected a bet by marking the player's predicted outcomes and entering a wager, the player can obtain a ticket purchase voucher 317 by clicking the “Create Voucher” button 119. Ticket purchase voucher 317 includes information about the player's selections in a ticket information section 332 and a machine readable ticket purchase voucher code in a ticket purchase voucher code section 334. The player must purchase a ticket prior to beginning of the earliest event on which the player's bet is based. In this example, the voucher states that the voucher must be used before 11:45 am on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2005. Ticket purchase voucher 317 expires at that time.

Ticket receipt 318 sets out the player's Sports Line prediction set at 344-347. At 349, ticket purchase voucher 317 set out the payout value based on the wager and the odds for the selected outcomes.

FIG. 5 illustrates an exemplary ticket purchase voucher creation page 416, a ticket purchase voucher 417 and a corresponding ticket receipt 418 for the Over/Under on-line game.

Referring to FIG. 1, Lottery computer system 102 includes a lottery database 160, a player account server 162 and a ticket server 164.

Lottery computer system 102 may be a single computer or may include various interconnected computers and other devices, including communication and data storage devices. Lottery database 160, player account server 162 and ticket server 164 may reside and operate on one or more of the computers or related systems that comprise lottery computer system 102. For example, portions of the player account server may operate on different computers which may be distributed across a large or small geographic area. In some embodiments, portions of the lottery computer system may operated by the lottery operator indirectly through a third party.

Player account server 162 manages the creation of player accounts and the creation of ticket purchase vouchers 113. Lottery players use player terminals 106 to access player account server 162. Optionally, communications between the lottery computer system 102 and a player terminal 106 may be secured using an encryption system or other security technique. A player terminal 106 used by a player may be referred to as the player's terminal.

Player account server 162 includes one or more player interfaces 166. Each player interface 166 facilitates communications between the player account server 162 and one or more of the player terminals 106. In the present embodiment, player interface 166 a includes a player website 167 a, which players may access by using a web browser operating on a player terminal 106, such as a personal computer or any other web-enabled computing device. Player interface 166 a communicates with web browsers to receive information from the player terminals 106 and to transmit information to the player terminals 106. For example, player interface 166 a receives information about new player accounts and creates a corresponding player account record 514 in the lottery database 160. This is further described below in relation to method 2100.

Player interface 166 a receives Ticket Purchase Voucher Requests 560 from player terminals 106 and transmits Ticket Purchase Voucher Data 562 to the player terminals allowing ticket purchase vouchers 113 to be printed at the player terminals. Ticket Purchase Voucher Requests 560 and Ticket Purchase Voucher Data 562 are further described below in relation to method 3000.

Other player interfaces 166 may be configured to allow various types of player terminals 106 to access the player account server to create player accounts or to obtain information relating to tickets associated with a player account. For example, other player interfaces 166 may be adapted to communicate with portable communication devices with small display screens such as portable digital assistant (PDA) devices or portable telephone devices. Other player interfaces 166 may be adapted to communicate with computer programs executing on a player terminal 106 and to control the display of information by such computer programs.

Lottery database 160 is used to store information about player accounts, draws of the on-line lotteries, events in the on-line games, ticket purchase vouchers and about tickets issued by the lottery operator. Many different data structures may be used to store information about player accounts, on-line lottery draws, on-line game events and tickets and the present invention is not limited to any particular data structure or data structures for doing so. Several exemplary data structures for storing such information will be described here. Skilled persons will be able to design different data structures to accommodate different types of on-line lotteries and games and to accommodate different computers, other devices, operating systems and software that may be used as part of a lottery computer system.

FIGS. 6 a-6 c illustrate a portion of lottery database 160. Lottery database 160 includes a player account table 502, on-line lottery draw tables 504, on-line lottery ticket tables 506 and a ticket purchase voucher table 570.

Referring to FIG. 6 a, player account table 502 includes a player account record 514 for each player account. Ticket purchase voucher table 570 includes a ticket purchase voucher record 572 for each ticket purchase voucher 117.

Each player account record 514 contains information about one player account. Three player account records 514 are illustrated in FIG. 6 a. Player account table 502 also contains other player account records 514. In this exemplary embodiment, each player account record 514 includes the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Account ID The account identification code for the player
Code account.
Account A password that the player must provide to access
Password information about tickets associated with the player
account. The password may optionally be stored in
an encrypted form.
Name The player's name.
Address The player's address.
Phone The player's phone number.
Fax The player's fax number.
E-mail The player's e-mail address.
Birth Date The player's birth date.
Sex The player's sex.
Income The player's income range.
Player Ticket This field contains a link or reference to each of the
List tickets associated with the player account, allowing
the tickets to be identified.
The reference to the tickets may be any mechanism
for identifying tickets. The reference may be direct
(such as a list of ticket codes or ticket record
identifiers) or indirect (such as a pointer to or the
name of a list, index or table containing ticket codes
or ticket record identifiers).
A ticket record identifier may identify a ticket table 506
(FIG. 6b) or 510 (FIG. 6c) and a ticket record 524
or 538 within the ticket table that relates to a
particular ticket associated with the player account.
The structure of on-line lottery ticket records 524 and
on-line game ticket records 538 is described below.
In this embodiment, this field contains a list of ticket
codes for each ticket associated with the player
account. The on-line lottery or on-line game for each
ticket is also identified, to allow the ticket record for
each ticket to be located in the appropriate ticket table
506 or 510 (FIG. 6b). For on-line games, the event
list is also identified.
In another embodiment, the field may contain a list of
ticket codes without grouping the ticket codes by on-
line lottery or on-line game. The specific on-line
lottery or on-line game and event list for which the
ticket was issued may be determined by examining
the ticket code (which may be coded to indicate the
on-line lottery or on-line game for which the ticket is
valid) or by searching the various ticket tables.
In other embodiments, this field may be omitted and
the lottery ticket records for tickets associated with a
player account may be identified by searching
through lottery ticket records using the Associated
Player Account field in the lottery ticket records.
Player Ticket This field contains a link or reference to each of the
Purchase ticket purchase vouchers associated with the player
Voucher List account, allowing the ticket purchase vouchers to be
identified.

A player creates a player account by accessing an account creation service. Referring briefly to FIG. 8, The player website 167 a (FIG. 1) includes a welcome web page. A player may access the account creation service by clicking on a “Create Account” button 604. An example of an account creation service is set out in PCT patent application No. PCT/CA2006/00270 in reference to FIG. 7 and method 2100 of that application. As part of creating a player account, a player selects an account identification code. In the present embodiment, a player's account ID code may consist of any combination or permutation of letter or numbers. Also, in the present embodiment, the order of characters is sufficient to distinguish two account identification codes. The account identification code KARINA1022 is distinct from the account identification code KARINA1202.

This is different from some of the concepts described for account identification codes in PCT patent application No. PCT/CA2006/000270. In PCT patent application No. PCT/CA2006/000270, some embodiments require account identification codes that contain different sets of characters, regardless of the order in which a player might prefer to set out the characters, in order to be distinct. Such embodiments may optionally have a field to record the player's preferred order for the characters in the player's account identification code. The present invention is compatible with such embodiments and when it is combined with such an embodiment, player accounts may have an account identification code in which each of the characters is different from the others to permit the account identification code to be marked on a selection slip as is described in that PCT application.

Each player account has a password, which is stored in the Password field in the player account record 514. The password may optionally be stored in an encrypted form.

Personal information about a player is stored in the Name, Address, Phone, Fax, E-mail, Birth Date, Sex and Income fields of the player account record 514. A player may choose not to provide some of this information, and the corresponding field may be left empty or omitted from a particular player account record 514, depending on the data structure used to store a player account record. In any particular embodiment, the lottery operator may choose not to include some of the fields set out above. For example, a lottery operator that chooses to permit only anonymous player accounts may provide for one an Account ID Code and an Account Password field in the player account records of that embodiment.

Returning to the present example system 100, an exemplary player account record 514 for the account identification code KARINA1022 may contain the following information:

Field Information recorded in field
Account ID Code KARINA1022
Account ********
Password
Name Karina Jones
Address 123 Somestreet Rd
Sometown, Somestate
84442
Phone (343)254-9348
Fax None
E-mail karina@isp.com
Birthdate Oct. 22, 1975
Sex Female
Income $50,001-$75,000
Player Ticket List Lotto 7/47 Tickets:
5933-2245-5896-5987
5933-3748-0985-3924
5933-7812-3256-6547
Keno Tickets:
5254-6789-5656-4156
5254-9562-6578-3245
Sports Line Tickets (List 8845):
1659-8761-6573-4657
1659-6204-2340-4826
Over/Under Tickets (List 8845):
3578-5698-1598-2584
Over/Under Tickets (List 8846):
3576-1942-8572-9234
Player Ticket V1653-564-5685-165
Purchase V1654-470-8329-332
Voucher List V1655-237-8537-275
V1656-832-2434-742

The Player Ticket List field in the player account record 514 for Karina Jones' player account includes a reference to an Over/Under ticket with the ticket code 3576-1942-8572-9234. This ticket is valid for the Over/Under on-line game and is based on the events on event list 8846 (not shown). Event list 8846 is similar to event list 8845 in that it sets out events for the Over/Under on-line game (and for the Sports Line on-line game), but relates to a different time period (which may overlap with the time period corresponding to event list 8845) and to events that occur within that time period.

Referring to FIG. 6 c, lottery database 160 includes an event table and a ticket table for the Over/Under on-line game with data about events and tickets relating to event list 4524. In this embodiment, event tables and ticket tables relating to different event lists are stored as separate tables. In another embodiment, event records relating to different event lists may be combined in one table and ticket records relating to different event lists may be combined in one table. In other embodiments, events may not be divided into different event lists.

Each ticket purchase voucher record 572 in the ticket purchase voucher table 570 corresponds to one ticket purchase voucher created by a player. In this embodiment, each voucher record 572 includes the following fields and data:

Field Information recorded in field
TP Voucher Code The ticket purchase voucher code for the voucher.
Player account ID The account identification code of the player account
code with which the voucher is associated.
Ticket Type The identity of the on-line lottery or on-line game for
which a ticket will be issued with the voucher.
Proposed Ticket This field contains information required to issue a
Information ticket for the on-line lottery or on-line game identified
in the Ticket Type field.
In the case of a ticket purchase voucher for an on-line
lottery, this field includes details about the ticket a
player wishes to purchase with the voucher. The
details may include played number sets, the number
of automatically selected numbers requested, the
number of draws that for which a ticket should be
printed or other ticket information, depending on the
rules of the on-line lottery.
In the case of an on-line game, this information may
include a selection set, wager amounts, depending on
the rules of the on-line games.
The ticket information may be recorded in one or
more fields, depending on the information recorded.

In this embodiment, all voucher records are maintained in a single ticket purchase voucher table 570. In other embodiment, voucher records may be kept in a different data structure. For example, voucher records for different on-line lotteries and on-line games may be kept in different tables or in other types of data files.

The voucher records for ticket purchase vouchers 117, 217 and 317 have the following contents:

Voucher 117:
Field Information recorded in field
TP Voucher Code V1653-564-5685-165
Player Account ID KARINA1022
Code
Ticket Type Lotto 7/47
Proposed Ticket Board A: 8, 12, 23, 29, 32, 37, 45
Information Board B: 2, 18, 24, 28, 33, 39, 42
Auto-Pick Numbers: 1
Tag: 2
Draws: 4

Voucher 217:
Field Information recorded in field
TP Voucher Code V1655-237-8537-275
Player Account ID KARINA1022
Code
Ticket Type Keno
Proposed Ticket Board 1: 1, 2, 7, 9, 10, 16, 22; Wager: 2
Information Board 2: 12, 25, 27, 43, 46, 49, 64, 66; Wager: 10
Auto-Pick 1: Play Category: 2, Wager5
Draws: 2

Voucher 317:
Field Information recorded in field
TP Voucher Code V1654-470-8329-332
Player account ID KARINA1022
code
Ticket Type Sports Line
Proposed Ticket Event List 8845
Information Event 17: V win
Event 18: H win
Event 45: V win
Event 60: H win

Voucher 417:
Field Information recorded in field
TP Voucher Code V1656-832-2434-742
Player account ID KARINA1022
code
Ticket Type Sports Line
Proposed Ticket Event List 8845
Information Event 56: Under
Event 57: Over
Event 60: Over

FIG. 6 a illustrates the associations between the player account record 514 for Karina Jones' player account and the ticket purchase voucher records 572 for her ticket purchase vouchers. Maintaining a list of ticket purchase vouchers associated with a player account within the corresponding player account record 514 allows a player's ticket purchase vouchers to be identified. A lottery operator may permit a player to save ticket purchase vouchers within the player's account and may allow a player to modify a saved ticket purchase voucher, to re-print a ticket purchase voucher or to delete a save ticket purchase voucher. In other embodiments, the player account record may not have a Player Ticket Purchase Voucher field and a player's ticket purchase vouchers may not be recorded in the corresponding player account record.

In the present embodiment, a player may optionally create an anonymous account, for which personal information that could identify the player is not recorded. The Account ID Code, the Account Password, the Player Ticket List fields and the Player Ticket Purchase Voucher List are required for the operation of a player account in this embodiment and the information stored in these fields is required even for an anonymous account. However, a player may optionally not provide some or all of the information for the personal information fields described above. A player may choose not to provide his name and address, but could optionally provide sex and income information to allow some demographic analysis of lottery players. Alternatively, the player may not provide any personal information.

In an alternative embodiment, a lottery operator may designate some personal or other information as required information. For example, the lottery operator may require a lottery player to provide the player's birth date to allow the lottery operator to ensure that only players of a certain age access the player account. Any combination of information may be designated as required information or optional information by a lottery operator. The personal information fields described in relation to the present embodiment are only an example.

In another alternative embodiment, a lottery operator may choose not to collect any personal information and may make all player accounts anonymous accounts. In such an embodiment, a player account record 514 may comprise only an Account ID field, an Account Password field, a Player Ticket List field and a Player Ticket Purchase Voucher List field.

In another embodiment, a lottery operator may not require a player to enter a password when accessing a player account. In such an embodiment, a player account record would not include an Account Password field.

Reference is next made to FIGS. 6 b and 6 c.

Each draw record 518 in the draw tables 504 contains information about a draw of an on-line lottery, such as the date of the draw, a draw number, winning numbers for the host on-line lottery and for any associated on-line lottery and prize information for the host on-line lottery and any associated on-line lottery.

Each of the draw records 518 in Lotto 7/47 draw table 516 contains information about one draw of the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery and the corresponding draw of the associated Tag on-line lottery on the same draw date. In this exemplary embodiment, a single draw record is used to maintain information about both a host on-line lottery and its associated on-line lottery, since the two on-line lotteries share information such as their draw date and since the tickets valid for the associated on-line lottery are a subset of those valid for the host on-line lottery. Alternatively, separate draw tables could be used for the two on-line lotteries.

Six draw records 518 for draws between Nov. 11, 2005 and Dec. 16, 2005 are illustrated in FIG. 6 a. In this exemplary embodiment, each draw record 518 in the Lotto 7/47 draw table includes the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Draw ID An identifier for the draw. This may be a draw
number, or any other type of identifier for the draw.
This field is optional, especially if the date (or date
and time) of the draw, or another field such as a
record number field, can be used to uniquely identify
the draw. In this exemplary embodiment, each draw
is assigned a numerical draw number, in sequential
order.
Draw Date The date on which the draw is scheduled to be
conducted. In another embodiment, this field may
also include the time of the draw, particularly if more
than one draw for the on-line lottery is conducted on a
particular day.
Lotto 7/47 The winning number set for this draw of the Lotto 7/47
Winning Number on-line lottery.
Set
Lotto 7/47 Prize Information about prizes for each winning
Information combination for this draw of the Lotto 7/47 on-line
lottery.
Tag Winning The winning number for the Tag associated on-line
Number lottery.
Tag Prize Information about prizes for each combination of
Information winning numbers for this draw of the Tag on-line
lottery.
Draw Ticket List This field contains a link or reference to each of the
tickets valid for the draw, allowing the tickets valid for
the draw to be identified.
The reference to the tickets may be any mechanism
for identifying the tickets valid for the draw. The
reference may be direct or indirect, as is described
above in relation to the Player Ticket List field of the
player account records 514.
In the present embodiment, this field is a pointer to an
index that contains a reference to the lottery ticket
records for all tickets that are valid for the draw. In
FIG. 6a, the link between the draw record 518 and
lottery ticket records 524 for tickets valid for each
draw is illustrated by lines connecting them. Lottery
database 160 includes an index for each draw. The
index includes a reference to each ticket that is valid
for the draw.
In another embodiment, this link may be omitted and
the lottery tickets valid for a draw may be identified by
searching the Valid Draw Dates field in lottery ticket
records in the appropriate ticket table.

The Lotto 7/47 Winning Number Set and Tag Winning Number fields in a draw record 518 will not contain information about winning numbers until after the draws of the on-line lottery or lotteries have been conducted on the draw date and the winning numbers have been determined. If any of the prizes for the on-line lottery are determined based on the number of winners, as in the case of a shared prize, then the prize values will only be known after the draw. If the prizes are pre-determined, as in the case of the Tag on-line lottery, the relevant prize information may be filled in when the draw record is created by the lottery operator. Where the prizes for an on-line lottery are the same for each draw (or for a series of draws), the corresponding prize information may be stored elsewhere in the lottery database 160 (for example in a lottery table (not shown), which may contain rules and other standard information about each on-line lottery, including any fixed or standard prizes). The corresponding prize information field may be omitted, or may contain a reference to the corresponding information stored elsewhere. In the present exemplary embodiment, the Tag Prize Information field is completed after a draw to record the number of winners of each prize offered in the Tag on-line lottery. The actual value of the prizes is recorded separately from the draw record 518. This information may, for example, be stored in a Tag on-line lottery information file or record (not shown) as another part of the lottery database 160 and is available to the lottery computer system 102.

Records in the draw table for each lottery are created by the lottery operator to store relevant information about each draw. An exemplary draw record 518 for the Nov. 18, 2005 draw of the Lotto 7/47 lottery could have the following contents prior to the draw:

Field Information recorded in field
Draw ID 1795
Draw Date Nov. 18, 2005
Lotto 7/47 Unknown when the record is created
Winning Number
Set
Lotto 7/47 Prize Unknown when the record is created, since most
Information Lotto 7/47 prizes are shared prizes. The fixed prize
of a free ticket for the winning combination of 3/7
regular numbers may be recorded here.
Tag Winning Unknown when the record is created
Number
Tag Prize Link or reference to pre-determined Tag on-line
Information lottery prize information stored elsewhere in the
lottery database 160.
Draw Ticket List Link or reference to an index of lottery ticket records
for tickets valid for this draw. The index includes
references to lottery ticket records for the following
ticket codes:
5933-2245-5896-5987
5933-3748-0985-3924

Each on-line lottery ticket record 524 in the on-line lottery ticket tables 506 contains information relating to a ticket issued for one or more draws of the on-line lottery and any associated lottery. Several ticket records 524 are shown in each of the ticket tables 506. Each ticket table 506 also contains additional ticket records (not shown) corresponding to additional tickets for the on-line lottery. In this exemplary embodiment, each lottery ticket record 524 includes the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Ticket Code The ticket code for the ticket.
Issue Date/Time The date and time at which the ticket was issued by
the lottery operator.
Host On-line The played number sets selected by the player, or
Lottery Played automatically selected for the player, for the host
Number Sets lottery.
Associated On- An indication of whether the Tag on-line lottery has
line Lottery been played on this ticket, and if so, a list of the Tag
Information played number sets. This field may contain one or
more Tag played number sets selected for the ticket,
even if the player elected not to play the Tag on-line
lottery.
Valid Draw A reference to the draws for which the ticket is valid.
Dates In the present embodiment, the date or dates of the
draws for which the ticket is valid are set out in this
field.
In another embodiment, this field may contain a list of
draw identifiers corresponding the Draw ID field in the
draw records 518, the date of a draw or a list or range
of dates of draws for which the ticket is valid.
Vendor Terminal The vendor terminal code described above.
Code
Verification Code The verification code described above.
Associated Account identification code for the player account with
Player Account which the ticket is associated. If the ticket is not
associated with a player account, this field will be
blank or may be omitted.
Prize Data Data relating to prizes won by the ticket. This field is
described in greater detail below.
Ticket Status The current status of the on-line lottery ticket with
respect to the completion of the draws for which the
ticket is valid and with respect to the redemption of
prizes won by the ticket, if any. The status may be
one of the following:
i. Draws Not Complete, indicating that at least
one draw for which ticket is valid has not been
conducted;
ii. Not A Winner, indicating that the draws for
which the ticket is valid for have been
conducted and the ticket has not won a prize;
iii. Winner-Not Redeemed, indicating that the
draws for which the ticket is valid for have
been conducted, the ticket has won at least one
prize and that the prize has not been redeemed;
or
iv. Winner-Redeemed, indicating that the draws
for which the ticket is valid have been
conducted, the ticket has won at least one
prize and the prizes have been redeemed.

Information that is displayed on the ticket receipt 114 may be stored in the format that is used on the ticket or in another corresponding format. For example, the played numbers in a played number set for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery may be stored as six different values, or may be stored as a code representing the played numbers, or both. The lottery ticket record may contain additional information, such as the method by which the player paid for ticket, and other information.

Lottery ticket records 524 for seven tickets L1-L7 are illustrated in Lotto 7/47 ticket table 522. The draw record 518 for the Nov. 18, 2005 draw is linked to the lottery ticket records 524 for tickets L2 and L3 indicating that they are valid for that draw. Ticket L3 corresponds to ticket receipt 118 (FIG. 2) and is also valid for the November 25, December 2 and December 9 draws. The ticket record 525 for ticket L3 may contain the following information when it is first created:

Field Information recorded in field
Ticket Code 5933-3748-0985-3924
Issue Date/Time Nov. 17, 2005-12:43 pm
Host On-line Set 1: 8, 12, 23, 29, 32, 37, 45
Lottery Played Set 2: 2, 18, 24, 28, 33, 39, 42
Number Sets Set 3: 12, 17, 21, 29, 32, 37, 43 (Auto-Pick)
Associated On- Played
line Lottery Played Number 1: 398587
Information Played Number 2: 957238
Valid Draw Nov. 18, 2005
Dates Nov. 25, 2005
Dec. 2, 2005
Dec. 9, 2005
Vendor Terminal 59573
Code
Verification Code 3423
Associated KARINA1022
Player Account
Prize Data Unknown (draws not conducted yet)
Ticket Status Draws Not Complete

Keno draw table 526 and Keno ticket table 528 are similar to Lotto 7/47 draw table and Lotto 7/47 ticket table and contain information relating to draws and tickets for the Keno on-line lottery. Keno draw table 526 contains draw records 518 for daily draws of the Keno on-line lottery. Lottery ticket records 524 for six tickets K1-K6 for the Keno on-line lottery are illustrated in the Keno Ticket table 528 in FIG. 6 a. In this example embodiment, the Keno on-line lottery is not a host lottery for the Tag on-line lottery. The ticket records 524 for Keno tickets do not have an Associated On-line Lottery Information field. If the lottery operator operates other on-line lotteries, the lottery database 160 will have a draw table and a ticket table for each other on-line lottery.

Referring to FIG. 6 c, lottery database 160 also includes on-line game event tables 508 and on-line game ticket tables 510. Player account table 502 is also illustrated in FIG. 6 c. Lottery database 160 includes a Sports Line event table 532, a Sports Line ticket table 536, an Over/Under event table 540 and an Over/Under ticket table 542. In the present embodiment, the lottery database includes a separate event table 508 and on-line game ticket table 510 for each event list for each on-line game. The event tables and on-line game ticket tables in FIG. 6 b are for the Sports Line and Over/Under on-line games based on event list 8845.

Each event table 508 contains one or more event records 534. Each event record 534 contains information about an event for an on-line game, such as the date and time of the event, the teams participating in the event, the various predicted outcomes that a player may choose, the odds set by the lottery operator for those outcomes and other information.

In this exemplary embodiment, each event record 534 in the Sports Line event table 532 includes the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Event number The event number as indicated on the event list.
Date/Time The date and time of the event. This may be the time
after which a player cannot select the event for a
ticket. Typically, the lottery operator will not allow a
player to select an event less than a selected time (for
example, 15 minutes or 30 minutes) before the
beginning of an event.
Event Type The name of sport, league or other classification of
the event.
Visitor Name The name of the visiting team
Home Name The name of the home team
Visitor Odds The odds set by the lottery operator for the visiting
team winning the event according to the rules of the
Sports Line on-line game.
Home Odds The odds set by the lottery operator for the home
team winning the event according to the rules of the
Sports Line on-line game.
Tie Odds The odds set by the lottery operator for a tie in the
event according to the rules of the Sports Line on-line
game.
Actual Outcome The actual outcome of the event, according to the
rules of the Sports Line on-line game.

In this exemplary embodiment, each event record 534 in the Over/Under event table 540 includes the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Event number The event number as indicated on the event list.
Date/Time The date and time of the event. As with the event
records for the Sports Line on-line game, this may be
time after which a player cannot select the event for a
ticket.
Event Type The name of sport, league or other classification of
the event.
Event Name A description of the event. This field identifies the
teams participating in the event.
Threshold The threshold number of points.
Over Odds The odds set by the lottery operator for the teams
scoring over the threshold number of points according
to the rules of the Over/Under on-line game.
Under Odds The odds set by the lottery operator for the teams
scoring under the threshold number of points
according to the rules of the Over/Under on-line
game.
Actual Outcome The actual outcome of the event, according to the
rules of the Over/Under on-line game.

The Actual Outcome field in an event record 534 will be blank until the event has been completed and the outcome is known. In the Sports Line event table 532, the event record 534 for event 87 on list 8845 has the following contents when it is first created:

Field Information recorded in field
Event number 87
Date/Time Nov. 13, 2005 - 8:00 pm
Event Type NHL Hockey
Visitor Name Anaheim
Home Name Dallas
Visitor Odds 1.7
Home Odds 5.5
Tie Odds 1.7
Actual Outcome Unknown

In the Over/Under event table 532, the event record 534 for event 56 on list 8845 has the following contents when it is first created:

Field Information recorded in field
Event number 56
Date/Time Nov. 13, 2005 - 1:00 pm
Event Type NFL Football
Event Name Kansas City v. Buffalo
Threshold 43.5
Over Odds 1.7
Under Odds 1.7
Actual Outcome Unknown

Each on-line game ticket table 510 contains on-line game ticket records 538. Each on-line game ticket record 538 contains information relating to a ticket sold for an on-line game. In this exemplary embodiment, the ticket records 538 in the Sports Line ticket table 536 include the following fields:

Field Information recorded in field
Ticket Code The ticket code for the ticket.
Issue Date/Time The date and time at which the ticket was issued by
the lottery operator.
Predicted A list of the events for which the player has made a
Outcomes prediction and the player's prediction for each event.
Vendor Terminal The vendor terminal code described above.
Code
Verification Code The verification code described above.
Associated Account ID code for the player account with which the
Player Account ticket is associated. If the ticket is not associated with
a player account, this field will be blank or may be
omitted.
Wager The amount that the player wagered on this ticket.
Maturation Event The event following which the on-line game ticket
“matures”. An on-line game ticket matures when the
results for the wager made on the ticket can be
determined.
In the present embodiment, this is possible when all
of the events on which the wager is based are
complete. The maturation event for each ticket is the
chronologically latest event that the wager is based
on.
In other embodiments, this information may be set out
as a fixed date or fixed date and time, after the
expected completion of the maturation event for
which the player has made a predicted.
In another embodiment, this field may be omitted.
The lottery operator may periodically (i.e. daily) or
occasionally search the Predicted Outcomes field of
each on-line game ticket record and determine the
Ticket Status for tickets that are based on events that
have been completed.
In another embodiment, the lottery operator may
configure the ticket server to wait until a player
attempts to check or redeem an on-line game ticket
before determining whether the ticket is a winning on-
line game ticket. If the events on which the on-line
game ticket is based have been completed, the ticket
server can calculate and report the Prize Data.
Otherwise, the ticket server reports that the Prize
Data cannot be calculated yet.
Payout Value The amount the player will be paid if his predictions
meet the requirement for the particular game. In
some games, several payout values might be
recorded and one or more of them might be paid to
the player if different criteria are met.
This field is optional. The payout value may be
calculated when it is required using the odds for the
outcomes predicted by the player and the wager
chosen by the player.
Ticket Status The current status of the on-line game ticket with
respect to the completion of the draws for which the
ticket is valid and with respect to the redemption of
prizes won by the ticket, if any. The status may be
one of the following:
i. Events Not Complete, indicating that the ticket
has not matured because the actual outcome of
at least one event on which the ticket is based
is not known;
ii. Not A Winner, indicating that the ticket has
matured and that the player has lost the wager
on the ticket;
iii. Winner-Not Redeemed, indicating that the
player has won the wager on the ticket, but has
not yet redeemed the ticket to receive the
payout value; or
iv. Winner-Redeemed, indicating that the player
has won the wager on the ticket and has
redeemed the ticket to receive the payout
value.

Each on-line game ticket table 510 has a Maturation Event Index (not shown) that provides an index of the ticket records 538 in the ticket table ordered by the event identified in the Maturation Event field in each of the ticket records. The Maturation Event Index may be used to identify ticket records 538 that correspond to tickets which mature after a particular event. The Sports Line ticket table 536 has a Sports Line Maturation Event Index (not shown). The Over/Under ticket table 542 has an Over/Under Maturation Event Index (not shown). In another embodiment, ticket records that have a specific maturation event may be identified by searching through each ticket record in a ticket table.

Sports Line ticket table 536 contains seven on-line game ticket records 538 corresponding to seven Sports Line on-line game tickets SL1-SL7. Ticket SL3 corresponds to ticket receipt 318 (FIG. 4). The ticket record 539 for ticket SL3, when it is first created has the following contents:

Field Information recorded in field
Ticket Code 1659-8761-6573-4657
Issue Date/Time Nov. 12, 2005 - 10:15 am
Predicted Event 17 - Visitor Win
Outcomes Event 18 - Home Win
Event 45 - Visitor Win
Event 60 - Home Win
Vendor Terminal 45678
Code
Verification Code 2344
Associated KARINA1022
Player Account
Wager $10.00
Maturation Event Event 60
Payout Value $124.80
Ticket Status Events Not Complete

Over/Under ticket table 542 contains six on-line game ticket records 538 corresponding to six Over/Under on-line game ticket OU1-OU6. Ticket OU2 corresponds to ticket receipt 418 (FIG. 5).

FIG. 7 illustrates a method 3000 that allows a player to create and print a ticket purchase voucher 113. Method 3000 will be explained in part with reference to an example using the player record for Karina Jones and the Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page 116, the associated ticket purchase voucher 117 and the associated ticket receipt 118.

Method 3000 begins in step 3002 in which the player uses a player terminal 106 access the player account server 162. The player terminal 106 communicates with a player interface 166 to allow the player to interact with the lottery computer system.

Referring to FIG. 8, the player website 167 a (FIG. 1) includes a welcome web page 602. A player may access player account server 162 by accessing the player website 167 a and accessing the welcome web page 602. Welcome web page 602 includes player account identification code field 612, an account password field 614 and an “Enter” button 616. To request access to the account checking service, the player enters his account identification code in the account identification code field 612, his account password in the account password field 614 and then clicks on the Enter button 616. The account identification code and account password entered by the player are transmitted to the player account server 162. Optionally, the account password may be encrypted before it is transmitted to the player account server 162. The account identification code may also optionally be encrypted before it is transmitted to the player account server 162.

In the present example, a player may access player website 167 a using a player terminal 106 that operates a web browser. Player terminal 106 c is a computer that is coupled to the Internet and operates a web browser. The welcome web page 602 is displayed on the player terminal 106 c. Karina Jones uses this player terminal 106 c to access the player website 167 a. The player interface 166 can display parts of the player website 167 a on the player terminal.

In the present example, Karina Jones enters her account identification code KARINA1022 in the account identification code field 612. She also enters her account password in the account password field 612 and clicks on the Enter button 616.

Method 3000 then proceeds to decision step 3004. In step 3004, the player account server 162 attempts to authenticate the account identification code and account password entered by the player in step 3002. If a player account record 514 matching the entered account identification code and account password exists in the player account table 512 (FIG. 6), then the account identification code and password are authentic and method 3000 proceeds to step 3008. Otherwise, method 3000 proceeds to step 3006.

Since Karina Jones correctly entered her account ID code and password, in the example, method 3000 proceeds to step 3008.

In step 3006, an error message is displayed on the player terminal 106 indicating that the player has entered an invalid account identification code or an invalid password (or both). Method 3000 then ends.

In step 3008, the player is provided access to the ticket purchase voucher creation service.

In another embodiment, the player may optionally be presented with an opportunity to use various services, such as a ticket checking service or the ticket purchase voucher creation service. For example, a webpage is displayed on the player's terminal identifying the various services and allowing the player to click a button to select the ticket purchase voucher creation service. In such embodiments, the player chooses to access the ticket purchase voucher creation service.

Referring to FIG. 9, player website 167 a then presents the player with a ticket purchase voucher selection page 620 on which the various on-line lotteries and on-line games for which a ticket purchase voucher can be made are identified and can be selected. For example, buttons 622 a, 622 b, 622 c and 622 d can be used to select Lotto 7/47, Keno, SportsLine and Over/Under. The player selects one of these on-line lotteries or on-line games by clicking on the name of the on-line lottery or on-line games.

In the example, Karina Jones chooses Lotto 7/47.

Method 3000 then proceeds to step 3010, in which the player is presented with a ticket purchase voucher creation page 112 (FIGS. 2-5) for the selected on-line lottery or on-line game. The player then selects the played numbers, outcomes, and/or other choices available, depending on the on-line lottery or on-line game selected. When the player has completed the voucher, the player clicks to the Create Voucher button 119.

For example, ticket purchase voucher creation page 116 for Lotto 7/47 is displayed for Karina Jones on her player terminal 106. She completes the Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page as shown in FIG. 2 to select two manually selected played number sets, one automatically selected Lotto 7/47 played number set, two Tag numbers and to purchase a ticket for four draws. Karina Jones then clicks the Create Voucher button 119.

Method 3000 then proceeds to step 3012. In this step, the player terminal transmits a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request 560 to the player account server containing proposed ticket information corresponding to the selections made by the player. The ticket purchase voucher generation pages 112, which are part of the player website 167 a, are configured such that when a player clicks the Create Voucher 119 button, a Ticket Purchase Voucher Request 560 is sent to the player interface 166. The Ticket Purchase Voucher Request is in the form of a message that includes proposed ticket information.

In the present example, when Karina Jones clicks the Create Voucher button 119 on the Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher creation page, the web browser on her player computer 106 c transmits a message to the player interface 166 containing the following proposed ticket information:

Ticket Type: Lotto 7/47
Manually selected number sets: 08 12 23 29 32 37 45
02 18 24 28 33 39 42
Automatically selected number sets: 1
Tag Numbers: 2
Draws: 4

In another embodiment, the ticket type may be implicit in the message type or in the source of the message. For example, the message by of a type that indicates the on-line lottery or on-line game for which a ticket purchase voucher is being requested, or the message may indicate that the ticket purchase voucher request originated from a Lotto 7/47 ticket purchase voucher generation page.

Method 3000 then proceeds to step 3014. In this step, the new ticket purchase voucher is added to the lottery database 160. The player account server 162 adds a new voucher record 572 to the ticket purchase voucher table 570 in response to the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request 560. The player account server associates the ticket purchase voucher record with the player's account. The player's account is identified in the Player Account ID Code field in the voucher record 572. The player account server 162 also identifies the new voucher in the Player Ticket Voucher List in the player record for the player's account.

In the present example, the player account server 162 adds the voucher record for voucher 217 (described above) to the voucher table in response to the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request.

Method 3000 then proceeds to step 3016, in which the player account server 162 generates a ticket purchase voucher 113 corresponding to the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request 560. The ticket purchase voucher is generated in a format that is suitable for printing at a player terminal and on which the machine readable voucher code can be scanned using a ticket vending terminal 104. In the present embodiment, ticket purchase vouchers 113 are generated in a portable document format (PDF) that is used widely in computing.

Method 3000 then proceeds to step 3018 in which the ticket purchase voucher is transmitted to the player terminal 106 from which the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request was received and in which a paper copy of the ticket purchase voucher is printed at the player's terminal (or another device) by the player. The ticket purchase voucher includes the ticket purchase voucher code in a form or version suitable for scanning at a ticket vending terminal.

In addition to generating the ticket purchase voucher, the player account server may also generate a version of the ticket purchase voucher that is suitable for display at the player terminal from which the Ticket Purchase Voucher Request 560 was received. This version may be generated by the player interface 166 that is communicating with the player terminal 106. For example, “dumb” player terminals (for example a device connected via a telnet connection) may simply receive and display text from a player interface and may just detect and transmit keystrokes and other input from the player to the player interface. A player interface for such a dumb terminal may transmit text corresponding to the ticket purchase voucher to the player terminal. The text may include instructions for the player to download the ticket purchase voucher, which the player can then print at his player terminal or at another device. When the player follows the instructions, the ticket purchase voucher is transmitted to the player.

In the Karina Jones example, the player is communicating with player interface 166 a, which controls the display of webpages from player website 167 a on her player terminal 106 c. Player interface 166 a generates a webpage that includes information corresponding to the ticket purchase voucher (which will generally include text setting out some or all of the contents of the ticket purchase voucher). The webpage is transmitted to the player interface where it is displayed. The webpage includes a “Print Voucher” button. When the player clicks the Print Voucher button, the voucher is transmitted to the player interface and player can print the voucher at the player terminal or at another device.

In another embodiment, the ticket purchase voucher may be transmitted to the player without any additional version of it. The player terminal may be able to display the voucher in addition to printing it. In some embodiments, the player may only be able to print the voucher without seeing a display of it.

In the Karina Jones example, the player interface generates a webpage that includes information on the ticket purchase voucher, as well as additional information, which may include instructions on how to use the voucher, other information about the lottery operator or the lottery operator's on-line lotteries, on-line games and other products, and other information. Karina Jones clicks on the “Print Voucher” button and the voucher is printed on a printer at her player terminal.

Method 3000 then ends.

After completing method 3000, the player has a printed ticket purchase voucher 113 that corresponds to the player's selections on the ticket purchase voucher creation page in step 3010. The player can use the ticket purchase voucher to purchase a ticket for an on-line lottery or on-line game in accordance with a ticket purchase method 3100.

FIG. 10 illustrates method 3100. Method 3100 allows the lottery operator to sell a ticket to a player and correspondingly allows a player to purchase a ticket using a ticket purchase voucher 113. The steps in method 3100 are explained with reference to Karina Jones' ticket purchase voucher 117 for the Lotto 7/47 on-line lottery.

Method 3100 starts in step 3102 in which the player presents a ticket purchase voucher 113 to a ticket vendor.

Method 3100 then proceeds to step 3104, in which the ticket vendor scans the machine readable voucher code 136 (FIGS. 2, 3, 4) using the scanner or scanning device of the ticket vending terminal 104. In the present example, the machine readable ticket purchase voucher code 136 is a barcode and the scanner is a barcode scanner.

In other embodiments the scanner is selected such that it can scan the machine readable ticket purchase voucher code used in such embodiments. The ticket vending terminal 104 transmits the ticket purchase voucher code of the ticket purchase voucher to the ticket server 164.

Method 3100 then proceeds to step 3106, in which the lottery computer system 102 issues a ticket to the player. The ticket server 164 receives the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket vending terminal 104 and obtains the corresponding ticket purchase voucher record 572 from the ticket purchase voucher table 570. The ticket purchase voucher record 572 contains proposed ticket information corresponding to the player's selections for the ticket purchase voucher. The ticket server 164 adds a ticket record to the appropriate ticket table corresponding to the Ticket Type in the proposed ticket information. The ticket server 164 associates the ticket with the player's account by identifying the player's account in the Associated Player Account field of the ticket record and by identifying the new ticket purchase voucher in the Player Ticket Purchase Voucher List field of the corresponding player account record 514.

The ticket server 164 transmits Ticket Receipt Data 554 to the ticket vending terminal 104 from which the voucher code was received in step 3104.

The Ticket Receipt Data 554 includes ticket information printed by the ticket vending terminal 104 on the ticket receipt 114 for the ticket.

In the Karina Jones example, the Ticket Receipt Data 554 includes the information printed on the ticket receipt 118 (FIG. 2). The Ticket Receipt Data 554 may also include additional information, such as formatting information to indicate how the information printed on the ticket receipt 114 should be laid out. The ticket vending terminal 104 prints a ticket receipt 114 setting out the ticket information.

The ticket vendor gives the ticket receipt 114 to the player and method 3100 ends.

In system 100, tickets are issued to players who have created a player account with the lottery operator at the lottery computer system. Tickets issued to a player in method 3100 are associated with the player's account. PCT patent application No. PCT/CA2006/000270 describes various systems for providing a ticket checking service that allow players to check the status of tickets associated with their accounts. System 100 may optionally be used with such systems.

The PCT application also describes methods by which a lottery operator may update the Prize Data and Ticket Status fields in an on-line lottery ticket record 524 and the Ticket Status in an on-line game ticket record 538. These fields may not be used in some embodiments. For example, in some embodiments winning tickets are recorded in winning tickets list, which may be stored in the lottery in any form such as a table, file or list. Additional data such as the amount of a prize won by a winning ticket may also be recorded in the winning tickets list. In such an embodiment, the Prize Data and Ticket Status fields may not be included in the ticket records.

In another embodiment, tickets may be issued to players in step 3106 without associating the tickets with a player account. In such an embodiment, an lottery operator may still require players to have a player account and may still require players to log in to the player account to create a ticket purchase voucher. The player's account identification code may be printed on the player's ticket purchase vouchers or on the player's ticket receipts, or both. By doing so, the player's ticket purchase vouchers and/or the player's ticket receipts are personalized for the player.

In another embodiment, a lottery operator may not require players to establish player accounts with the lottery computer system. Players may be able to access the ticket purchase voucher creation service without logging into a player account and may be able to make selections on a ticket purchase voucher creation page and print a voucher without identifying themselves. Ticket purchase vouchers created in these embodiments will not include an account ID code or other identifying information about the player. In addition, ticket records in such embodiments will not include an Associated Player Account field. The player may use the anonymous ticket purchase voucher to purchase a ticket.

Reference is next made to FIG. 11. In other embodiments, a single ticket purchase voucher may be used to purchase more than one ticket. The player is permitted to make selections for more than one ticket and proposed ticket information for each ticket is recorded in the player account server or elsewhere in the lottery computer system. When the player is done making selections for tickets, the player requests a ticket purchase voucher for all of the tickets. The proposed ticket information for each of the tickets is recorded in the lottery database and associated with a single ticket purchase voucher record. For example, the proposed ticket information may be stored in the ticket purchase voucher record or the ticket purchase voucher record may include a reference to the proposed ticket information, which may be stored separately.

In such an embodiment, in step 3106 of method 3100, when the ticket server receives a ticket issue request based on the multi-ticket ticket purchase voucher, it issues tickets corresponding to all of the proposed ticket information associated with the ticket purchase voucher's code. Each of the tickets is associated with the corresponding player account.

FIG. 11 illustrates a ticket purchase voucher 717 that may be used in such an embodiment to purchase more than one ticket. Ticket purchase voucher 717 has ticket information section 732 and a machine readable ticket purchase code 736 in a ticket purchase voucher code section 734. Ticket information section 732 sets out a player's selections for three on-line lottery tickets. In the lottery database, proposed ticket information for all three tickets is recorded within or accessible from the ticket purchase voucher record for the ticket purchase voucher 717. When ticket purchase voucher 717 is scanned at a ticket vending terminal 104, the ticket vending terminal transmits the ticket purchase voucher code to the ticket server. The ticket server issues all three tickets and the player receives three corresponding ticket receipts 114.

In the embodiments described above, a player presents a ticket purchase voucher 113 to a ticket vendor in step 3102 of method 3100 to purchase a ticket. A ticket purchase voucher may also be used to purchase a ticket from a player operated ticket vending terminal. The player may scan the barcode of the ticket purchase voucher at the player operated ticket vending terminal, which then communicates with the lottery computer system and prints a ticket receipt or receipts corresponding to the ticket vending terminal, as described above.

In the embodiments described above, a player will typically pay a ticket vendor for tickets purchased by the player in step 3106 of method 3100. In other embodiments, the player may be able to link a payment service to the player's account. For example, the player may be able to record a credit card number, debit card number, bank account or other payment service in association with the player's account. In some embodiments, information required to complete a payment using the payment service may be recorded in the player account record for the player account. When the player uses a ticket purchase voucher to purchase a ticket or tickets, the ticket server may obtain payment from the payment service prior to issuing a ticket or tickets in step 3106. Optionally, the player may be able to may be required to enter a password or authentication code at the ticket vending terminal before the payment is authorized by the payment service.

In each of the embodiments described above, a player obtains a printed ticket purchase voucher at a player terminal. The ticket purchase voucher code is provided to a ticket vending terminal by scanning the ticket purchase voucher code from the ticket purchase voucher. In other embodiments, the player may be able to provide a ticket purchase voucher code to a ticket vending terminal in another form.

In some embodiments, in step 3018 of method 3000, the player account server provides a version of the ticket purchase voucher in which the ticket purchase voucher code may be displayed on the screen of a portable player terminal such as a PDA or cell phone. For example, a version of the ticket purchase voucher may be provided which displays the ticket purchase voucher code as a bar code on the screen. The player may be able to store the ticket purchase voucher in the portable player terminal. The player may then purchase tickets by displaying the ticket purchase voucher on the screen of the portable player terminal and scanning the displayed bar code at a ticket vending terminal or allowing a ticket vendor to do so during step 3104 of method 3100.

In other embodiments, a ticket vending terminal may be configured to receive a ticket purchase voucher code through a radio frequency or optical signal. For example, in step 3018, the player account server may provide a ticket purchase voucher code in a numeric form or a coded form that can be transmitted by a portable player terminal. The ticket purchase voucher code may be stored on the portable player terminal. During step 3104, the player may cause the portable player terminal to transmit a radio frequency or optical signal (such as an infra-red signal) including the ticket purchase voucher code to a ticket vending terminal with a corresponding receiver. In other embodiments, the player may physically couple the portable player terminal to the ticket vending terminal with a cable and may transmit an electronic signal including the ticket purchase voucher code.

Any other method may be used to input a ticket purchase voucher code into a ticket vending terminal. For example, in some embodiments, a player or ticket vendor may be able to manually enter a ticket purchase voucher code into a ticket vending terminal using a keypad.

Several embodiments of the invention have been described. In addition, numerous alternatives embodiments and additional features of the invention have been described. A particular lottery operator may combine the various embodiments and features to develop other embodiments that utilize the inventions and fall within the scope of the following claims.

Referenced by
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US20090158254 *May 13, 2008Jun 18, 2009Chun-Fang ChengAutomatic creative proposal generating and filtering system and manufacturing method thereof and multiple components combining method
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Classifications
U.S. Classification463/25
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationG07F17/329, G06Q20/045, G06Q50/34, G07F17/42, G06Q30/06, G07F17/32
European ClassificationG07F17/32, G06Q50/34, G06Q30/06, G07F17/32P4, G06Q20/045, G07F17/42