Can anything be totally random?

  bumpkin 19:20 07 Apr 2013
Locked

Can anything be totally random? an odd title maybe ,can anyone give me an example of something that is 100% random.

  Quickbeam 08:28 08 Apr 2013

"The lottery machines can be predicted as to which balls will come out if you could work out all the maths involving air flow, speed of rotation, weight of each ball, diameter of tube etc."

Anyone know where I can gather all this information from, and the hard sum required...?

  BT 08:31 08 Apr 2013

we have about £100 in Premium Bond Ernies

..as have many other people. Its a fact that the bigger your holding the more chance you have of winning. Current Odds are 24000 to 1. Having said that there are often people with only small holdings who have won bigger prizes. Check the Winners Lists

We have between us about £35000 worth and on average win about £100 a month, a much better return than most savings accounts these days.

Read more: http://www.techadvisor.co.uk/forums/16/speakers-corner/4222395/can-anything-be-totally--random/?ob=datea&pn=2#ixzz2Pr1ZOivI

  fourm member 08:55 08 Apr 2013

Now, you are changing the question.

There's a big difference between random events and random numbers.

I agree that there is no such thing as a perfectly symmetrical die but it is possible to get close enough to perfection that the difference from genuine randomness is vanishingly small.

But, as I said, there are plenty of natural events that entirely random.

With events, like throwing a die, you start by saying this ought to be random why isn't it? With generating numbers, you start by saying this isn't random how can we make it seem to be?

That means, for something like ERNIE, the difference between the numbers generated and true randomness is also vanishingly small.

Fruit Bat /\0/\ may be right about determining the lottery balls from maths but the maths is mind-numbingly difficult. And, you'd have to know the start position for every ball to determine its movements. I've never seen a lottery draw but I'm assuming the balls don't start in numerical sequence.

People who claim that the lottery is predictable (without doing the complex maths) are usually finding patterns when none exist.

  carver 10:02 08 Apr 2013

"Ball cocks"

And the next 1000 responses will all be totally random, in fact with the amount of different permutations of words/letters and numbers I believe that I could give a random response for a lifetime.

  bumpkin 14:24 08 Apr 2013

Carver, even if you could it would only be for a lifetime. I would also think any machine would have some bias. So we don't really know seems to be the answer.

  martd7 14:29 08 Apr 2013

Free radicals?

  fourm member 14:30 08 Apr 2013

'So we don't really know seems to be the answer'

Eh?

We do know. Lots of events are truly random. Computer-generated random numbers aren't but, for something like ERNIE, they are so close to being truly random that you can't tell the difference.

  Forum Editor 16:46 08 Apr 2013

The fact of two people meeting and falling in love is a totally random event, as is a road accident, or someone seeing a shooting star, or tripping over a paving stone.

Those things 'just happen', but of course other factors lead to them happening, and they may be random events, too.

As fourm member has pointed out, there's a big difference between random events and random numbers.

  bremner 17:18 08 Apr 2013

Any posting by Aitchbee

  bumpkin 17:31 08 Apr 2013

You were quick on the ball there FE

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