by Max Brantley
Readers here expressed unhappiness yesterday with the Arkansas Lottery's decision to use computer-generated numbers for lottery games rather than draw them from a machine with bouncing balls.
They are not alone. A lottery website has begun a national petition campaign to urge all states to resist the move to randomly generated numbers (supposedly on account of lower cost). A lengthy list of reasons are offered to oppose the computer numbers, but the chief one is that people just don't trust them. Also: Are the estimates on cost savings believable? By definition how can a computer generate "random" numbers? Ever heard of hackers?