True random number generator goes online

Submitted by admin on Thu, 07/19/2007 - 09:00

A 'true' random number generator that relies on the unpredictable quantum process of photon emission has gone online providing academic and scientific community access to true random numbers free of charge.

A group of computer scientists from Ruder Boškovic Institute (RBI) in Zagreb, Croatia, developed and launched the Quantum Random Bit Generator Service (QRBGS) whose range of applications spans fields as diverse as advanced scientific simulations, cryptographic data protection and security applications, as well as virtual entertainment – including online gambling and computer games.

Ordinary random number generators found in most computers in use today are 'pseudo-random' numbers that use various algorithms to pick the numbers from large pre-compiled databases of numbers obtained by methods such as rolling the dice.

Anyone who has access to such a database from which the pseudo-random number is picked, can accurately predict the next number that comes out of such generators.

But, the 'Quantum Random Bit Generator' (QRBG121), which is the engine for QRBGS, is a fast non-deterministic random bit (number) generator whose randomness relies on intrinsic randomness of the quantum physical process of photonic emission in semiconductors and subsequent detection by photoelectric effect.

RBI’s service enables real-time internet access to QRGB device through several network access modes, such as C/C++ libraries, web services and Mathematica/Matlab client add-ons.

The QRBG device itself is located and operated at the RBI and is connected to the internet through advanced computer technologies such as computer clusters and GRID networks.