“An Ottawa physicist is using laser light to create truly random numbers much faster than other methods do, with obvious potential benefits to cryptography: ‘Sussman’s Ottawa lab uses a pulse of laser light that lasts a few trillionths of a second. His team shines it at a diamond. The light goes in and comes out again, but along the way, it changes. … It is changed because it has interacted with quantum vacuum fluctuations, the microscopic flickering of the amount of energy in a point in space. … What happens to the light is unknown — and unknowable. Sussman’s lab can measure the pulses of laser light that emerge from this mysterious transformation, and the measurements are random in a way that nothing in our ordinary surroundings is. Those measurements are his random numbers.'”
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