- 7.30pm BST
An automatic timed (aka cron) job
zeroes the live entry log, flashes up a
"ticket sales closed" message on the
home and individual lottery pages and
sets the refresh period to
minutes for the home and individual lottery page
(the latter will stay at
minutes until the draw).
I join the Lottery Chat Room.
- 7.35pm BST (approx.)
I disable any automatic page updates on the live server, to allow me to
produce ultra-fast edits (ADSL + ssh + vi) on the lottery home page
(in the newsflash section mainly) in preparation for the live TV show
commentary, though the home page only gets a summary now - the full live
commentary is in the Lottery Chat Room.
I open a Live Updates window and
register myself (remember I get 3 votes for
the numbers compared to everyone else's one vote !).
- 7.50pm BST
Live TV show starts and I adjust META refresh tag on
the home lottery page to refresh the page every 60 seconds.
Full live and exclusive Internet commentary takes place in the
Lottery Chat Room now - only summaries are edited on
the lottery home page.
Chat room messages are posted within 10-15
seconds of any event on the live show.
- 7.55pm BST (approx.)
I submit the estimated jackpot prize pool, the machine used and ball set
used via the Live Updates system.
This actually zaps any
BST live commentary summaries on the home page, but that's not vital.
- 8.07pm BST (approx.)
I reduce the home page refresh frequency to 15 seconds and switch to the
Live Update system (which will remove any
BST live commentary from the
home page) to submit the 7 balls. Note if the bonus number is not
submitted and the main results data file includes it (see
entry below), then the Live Update is ignored.
As soon as the first ball is submitted, the Live Update system reduces
the page refresh time to 8 seconds.
The live updates system now generates the appropriate temporary lines to
paste into my main results data file, to save me having to prepare something
beforehand (now includes the machine and ball set). There is
also a live ball-by-ball frequency and last
appearance analysis on the individual lottery page, plus a complete
(wins and losses) history of the jackpot ticket available
within 5 seconds of the 6th ball being drawn.
- 8.09pm BST (approx.)
The META refresh tags are now automatically removed from main lottery page and
individual lottery page once the bonus ball has been submitted via the
Live Updates system (any further page generation after the bonus ball
is included doesn't have META tags in them of course). Disable live updates
system to stop it interfering with page generation.
Start page re-generation (without the number of winners or prize amounts for
the draw that just took place), which should take about 3 minutes.
I also start to generate the Best Performing Tickets
page separately, which takes about
45 minutes to complete.
- 8.10pm BST (approx.)
Enable live server page updates and allow the freshly-generated pages to be
- 8.20pm BST (approx.)
I use the 30 minutes lull here to build up the manual comments on the
individual lottery page and also talk about the post-draw analysis in the
Lottery Chat Room.
- 9.15pm BST (approx.)
I will usually have the full results up by now thanks to Camelot's phone
line, but if not, I keep an eye on BBC 1 teletext pages 555-559 and ITV
teletext page 123, noting down the results and phoning Camelot to confirm
If there's any formulaic discrepancy, I have to phone Camelot again to
re-check their figures.
- 9.20pm BST (approx.)
Remove the live updates status file and then
re-generate all pages with the full results and collapse exhausted, having
been online for over 2 hours !