# Re: Toaster to Generate Random Numbers

From: Bill Unruh (unruh@string.physics.ubc.ca)
Date: 01/09/03

```From: unruh@string.physics.ubc.ca (Bill Unruh)
Date: 9 Jan 2003 01:44:58 GMT

```

"Omar Bohsali" <omarbohsali@omarbohsali.com> writes:

]Hello.

]Is it possible to use thermal noise to generate random numbers.

]My idea is the following:

]Get a toaster, and measure the noise generated by it. Amplify the noise, and
]then have it digitized by a program that will turn it into numbers.

??? a toaster? What aspect of the toaster do you plan on measuring to
get the noise?

Anyway, run a DC current through a resistor and measure the voltage.
This will give you a variety of noises. Some (1/f) have long time scale
correlations, some (higher frequency) is pretty white in spectrum.

]One question still lingers in my plan:

]Is thermal noise random?

No physical source is "random". They all have biases, correlations, etc.
You can work to get rid of them. Exactly how predictable they make the
noise is a different question. Ie, you might have a correlation which
affects say 1 bit out of 100 if you do not work very hard (ie 99 bits of
"randomness" per 100 bits).

]Some people say that it is, some say that it isn't.

## Relevant Pages

• Re: Random Numbers
... ]> The thermal noise of a resistor or a zenor diode with current ... ]Thermal noise is pretty good for randomness. ... It is very very easy to put correlations into that. ...
(comp.security.misc)
• Re: Toaster to Generate Random Numbers
... ]>]should agree that thermal noise can be considered random ... ]> correlations, especially at long times (1/f noise). ...
(comp.security.misc)
• Re: Toaster to Generate Random Numbers
... Most (sane) people ... >]should agree that thermal noise can be considered random ... > correlations, especially at long times (1/f noise). ...
(comp.security.misc)
• Re: Toaster to Generate Random Numbers
... Omar Bohsali wrote: ... > Is it possible to use thermal noise to generate random numbers. ... > Get a toaster, and measure the noise generated by it. ...
(comp.security.misc)
• Re: Toaster to Generate Random Numbers
... What aspect of the toaster do you plan on measuring to ... >get the noise? ... Spread sardines on the toast, and you'll have a nice poisson distribution :-) ... Fax/Voice +1258-9858 | read details of WFTPD Pro for XP/2000/NT. ...
(comp.security.misc)