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4 comments

  1. § Ping Email said on :
    How can you trust the randwatch to be truly random?

    Back when i had a PalmPilot, i wrote a little app called "ChangeMaker" for making "probabilistic change" when i didn't have exact change. Suppose a friend and i went for lunch and he put it on his card; and suppose i owed him an odd amount like $12.34 but only had a $20 bill. So i'd punch in 12.34 and click the $20 button, and the app would, with 61.7% probability, tell me to pay my friend $20.

    The way i got them to trust the random number generator was to show a spinning wheel on the screen, so you could see that 61.7% of the wheel was black and 38.3% was white. You would grab the circle and send it spinning with a flick of the stylus, and it would spin and eventually come to a stop according to a simple physical model. Sufficiently nerdy friends would usually be agreeable to this procedure, especially after having a chance to play with the wheel and see that it behaved reasonably.
  2. § joe® Email said on :
    Yeah, I'm not sure how to have it produce trustworthy randomness.

    It seems like the "quality" of the randomness is more important in the high-security harlequin case and in the collaborative trust model of ChangeMaker. That is, maybe if you're the one relying on the randomness for your own purposes... then it just needs to be random enough, right?

    Can we think of any sources of physical randomness that might do well in a small form factor? Maybe like little caged Yahtzee dice (where the dice can't fall out but rotate freely)? Or a little lava lamp or set of radioactive bits and a counter?

    Even if the randomness wasn't terribly good... but just proveably ok, it would be useful.
  3. § Jackie Paper Email said on :
    i was thinkng the same thing :D if it gets made i would buy one. a six sided die works for 2,3 and 6 possibilities an eight for 2,4 and 8 and a ten for 2,5 and 10
    so from three dice 2,3,4,5,6,8 and 10
    although you could use one die for everything below its highest number and simply continue to roll till a possible route number comes up
  4. § joe® Email said on :
    trick is, you can't roll dice in many situations... like if you're hanging upside down from a rope while infiltrating a secret Tabula facility.
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