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Topic: Simple random number generator?
Replies: 8   Last Post: Dec 12, 2012 12:01 AM

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Ben Bacarisse

Posts: 1,972
Registered: 7/4/07
Re: Simple random number generator?
Posted: Nov 28, 2012 10:29 AM
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"Existential Angst" <> writes:

> "Ben Bacarisse" <> wrote in message

>> "Existential Angst" <> writes:
>>> Well, ackshooly I am talking about true random. Bailey and Crandall are
>>> hypothesizing that e, pi et al are true random (I like "intrinsically
>>> random"), but you and others are apparently arguing that because pi can
>>> be
>>> calc'd or generated, it cannot be random. Bailey/Crandall would clearly
>>> disagree with this.

>> No, they don't. I am sure they accept the information theoretic
>> meaning of the word, just as I accept the statistical sense of the term
>> (especially when in "scare quotes").

[I corrected some of my spelling in the above]
> What is the diffeence between "random" in the information-theoretic context
> vs. the statistical context?
> Wouldn't the two be correlatable or translatable in some way?

They are related but they are not the same. I think all
non-compressible sequences will be statistically random, but not
vice versa (as pi shows).

>>> Hasn't pi been calc'd to billions of places already? Seems to me that's
>>> enough random numbers to last people for a while.... lol

>> Does the lol mean you are joking?

> Well actually, the wiki article I linked says pi has been calc'd to a
> *trillion* digits.
> The point being, if you need a random sequence, for whatever purpose, you
> can just sort of pull them "off the shelf", from anywhere in the sequence.
> A trillion numbers oughtta do ya....

The problem is the size of the shelf. It's much simpler to link to
small PRNG algorithm than to provide access to a pre-computed large

>> Good quality, hardware-generated random number sequences (if our current
>> understanding of quantum effects is correct) are random in a different
>> way to the digits of pi. It helps if the terminology is be able to
>> distinguish between them.

> Which harks back to the above.
> Couldn't you take a single photon slit experiment, sample the results
> "byte-wise", ie, record every diffraction result in groups of 5, and let
> those five zero's/one's represent a base 10 digit? Then, you'd have the
> photon slit experiment generate irrational-number-like randomness.

Why 5?

> In that sense, information-theoretic randomness (if you would charactize the
> photon exp as "informational") and statistical randomness could be
> translatable?

I don't know what you mean by "translatable".


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