Why would someone display this way?

Well, it maybe that sometimes we need five digit numbers or two digit or

one digit depending on the problem the application and

having them grouped this way makes it easier for us to see them, to read them,

use some sets of numbers for two digits and some for three.

These are random number tables appear in text books.

And my mentor a man named Leslie Kish had a table of this in his textbook.

And he made a trip to the People's Republic of China a long time ago

to talk with them about doing chance selections and demographics studies,

studies of population.

And while he was there to honor him, as a sociologist and

a statistician, one of the students went out and took the random numbers

in his table in his textbook and they printed them on a T-shirt.

And he brought these back.

He was so thrilled with this.

So he brought them back and hand them out to the students and colleagues.

And my wife has one.

It's quite a fashion statement, just digits.

Grouped in sets of five.

Actually, some people think they look like zip codes,

but that's neither here nor there.

It's not necessarily good fashion, but it does represent a way of looking at these.

Here's another representation of these.

This is from one of my favorites, a book published by the Rand Corporation.

The Rand Corporation, a think tank during the warriors and

even today they do a lot of work on defense contracts.

And following World War II they published a book called A Million Random Digits so

now we're talking about a sequence of a million digits from zero to nine,

repeated going on and on and they group them into blocks of five.

They group them into blocks of 500 pages with 2,500 digits on a page.

With 50 rows and 50 columns on a page.

And then, they printed them.

Now, why would anybody do something like this?

It had a serious purpose.

It also generated some fun things, but

the serious purpose was they were demonstrating that they had a random

number generator that would generate numbers that looked random.

Now, they were actually convinced that the the generator was truly random,

so they call it pseudo random number generator.

The English pronunciation of the Greek meaning false, and the random number

generator they want demonstrate that is coming really close to a random process.

So they did it a million times and the counted how many zeros, how many ones,

and so on.

In effect the only text in the book is the first page.

A short table showing how many ones, how many twos, and so on with it.

And the rest of it are the digits.

Now, some people have had some fun with this.

There actually is a book review of this Million Random Digits out there on Amazon.