Monday, August 29, 2005

Take a Chance: Science News Online, Dec. 4, 2004

Points out the problem of the seed and the difficulty in generating random numbers.
Science News Online

Week of Dec. 4, 2004; Vol. 166, No. 23
Take a Chance
Scientists put randomness to work

Erica Klarreich

Since the dawn of written history, people have exploited the randomness of a roll of a die to inject their games with the thrill of the unpredictable. Today, randomness is finding myriad other uses, such as encrypting credit card numbers in Internet transactions, deciding how to allocate treatments in drug trials, choosing precincts to call in national polls, running online gambling sites, and helping physicists simulate phenomena ranging from the weather to traffic patterns.........