Take the 2-minute tour ×
Mathematics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people studying math at any level and professionals in related fields. It's 100% free, no registration required.

In the mid 1940's I believe, the RAND corporation published a book with a million random numbers (from a normal distribution). This was before Marsaglia, so considering the primitive state of their knowledge in testing for randomness, how did they generate these numbers and how did they test them? I ask this b/c I always get the sense that people in the field seem to regard this source as the "gold standard", although it is not obvious at all to me that this should be the case.

Thanks, Jack

share|improve this question
rand.org/pubs/monograph_reports/MR1418.html The introduction explains how the digits were generated and tested. –  Byron Schmuland Sep 30 '12 at 18:17
@Byron: That looks like an answer, swims like an answer and quacks like an answer. –  joriki Sep 30 '12 at 19:20
@joriki You are quite right! –  Byron Schmuland Sep 30 '12 at 19:36

1 Answer 1

up vote 0 down vote accepted

The book is A Million Random Digits with 100,000 Normal Deviates. The introduction, freely available here, explains in detail how the numbers were generated and tested.

share|improve this answer
Thanks. I had heard someone say how little documentation the book contained, so I didn't look at the intro. It still doesn't really explain how the process works (esp if you don't know what an electronic roulette wheel is), so I can't say I still understand it, but at least I know where to start to investigate. The tests used are a little better explained. –  user41455 Oct 1 '12 at 0:54

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.