# In Our Time With Melvyn Bragg: Random and Pseudorandom

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss random and pseudorandom numbers. Randomness will be familiar to anybody who’s bought a lottery ticket or shuffled a pack of cards. But there’s also a phenomenon known as pseudo-randomness –numbers which look random but aren’t. So why are these numbers useful and how can they be generated? Melvyn is joined by Marcus du Sautoy, Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford; Colva Roney-Dougal, Senior Lecturer in Pure Mathematics at the University of St Andrews; and Timothy Gowers, Royal Society Research Professor in Mathematics at the University of Cambridge.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/iots

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1. ### Random and Pseudorandom

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss random and pseudorandom numbers. Randomness will be familiar to anybody who’s bought a lottery ticket or shuffled a pack of cards. But there’s also a phenomenon known as pseudo-randomness –numbers which look random but aren’t. So why are these numbers useful and how can they be generated? Melvyn is joined by Marcus du Sautoy, Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford; Colva Roney-Dougal, Senior Lecturer in Pure Mathematics at the University of St Andrews; and Timothy Gowers, Royal Society Research Professor in Mathematics at the University of Cambridge.

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2. ### Leonard Mlodinow on randomness and his book The Drunkard’s Walk

Leonard Mlodinow, of the California Institute of Technology is the author of The Drunkard’s Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives. His lecture on the subject of randomness was presented by the Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Ontario on May 6th, 2009.

3. ### Big Picture Science

That’s so Random! — ENCORE Random is as random does… makes sense doesn’t even that anyway in tune hear to randomness how lives rules. Brain chaos the drives, restoration role of help insight ecology may into randomness the, numbers sense of make statistics can’t why we or, ants not seem of erratic behavior why the may but is.