Random Number seeds, was RE: First computer with real-time clock?

From: Paul Koning <pkoning_at_equallogic.com>
Date: Mon Aug 2 08:06:26 2004

>>>>> "John" == John Lawson <jpl15_at_panix.com> writes:

 John> Computer-based ramndom number seed generation:

 John> I may at some point remember the machine/manufacturer, but I
 John> *do* recall tha one (perhaps Gummint-oriented?) device used a
 John> standard radio buried in it somewhere, tuned to a local
 John> station, the output of which was digitized and the seeds
 John> extracted from that... as I write this, IISTR that it was some
 John> kind of crypto-thingy...

That would be quite a bad idea. I'm sure the spooks are smarter than

Random number generators are built in to most crypto chips these days;
they work starting from the noise generated by some simple electronic
circuits. Then any biases are taken out by post-processing, for
example by running the bitstream through a cryptographic hash.

Received on Mon Aug 02 2004 - 08:06:26 BST

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