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From "Marc M. Adkins" <Marc.M.Adk...@Doorways.org>
Subject RE: random number generation
Date Sat, 29 Dec 2001 23:47:24 GMT
> > This is almost the entire problem with random numbers - what is
> > good enough?

I was once advised to use crypto functions to generate a "really" random
number.  I may be able to locate the algorithm -- I'm not sure without
looking -- but it depended on having heavy-duty crypto functions available.
Like one step was to generate an SHA (MD5?) hash of a block of pseudo-random
data (I think).

I noticed that APR has MD5 code in it, perhaps the algorithm would be doable
with the current codebase.  I remember it being really slow (due to the
crypto functions used).  Perhaps that could be offset by generating larger
blocks of numbers at a go and vending them out as needed.  Perhaps a thread
could be dedicated to the purpose.  Seems like too much work, but I thought
I'd mention it.

Does anyone want me to go looking for the algorithm for this discussion?
I'll understand if the crypto aspect has y'all making a sign against the
evil algorithm as cold chills travel up your spines.  That's what it
generally does to me...but I'm a programmer, not a mathematician.

Marc M. Adkins


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