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# In a computer program designed to generate random numbers, are the numbers truly "random", or could the results be predicted by a knowledge of the algorithms involved?

Question #125694. Asked by BaronBatty. (Apr 12 12 2:01 AM)

MikeMaster99

In most cases, the answer is 'no', the numbers generated are pseudo random numbers as a starting number (seed) and algorithm are used. These algorithms can be extremely complex and produce apparent randomness.

However, true random number generators do exist and use some physical phenomenon (e.g. time of radioactive decay or atmospheric noise) as the starting point.

See http://www.random.org/randomness/ for an excellent description.

 Apr 12 12, 2:34 AM

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