Updated: 01/24/2018 by Computer Hope

randomAny data or information that has no order. For example, 5,8,2,9, and 0 are single-digit numbers that are in random order. Data that is random can be sorted by date, name, time, age, etc.

Data can be randomly selected or random numbers can be generated using a random seed. Computer games, web pages, programs, and encryption are just a few examples of what needs random values to operate. For example, Computer Hope has a random dictionary definition script that randomly selects and opens a random dictionary page for Computer Hope users.

Random number in programming

In programming languages, there is often a command, function, or random number generator (rng) that allows the developer to generate a pseudo-random number. For example, in Perl, the rand function will return a random number between 0 and a given number:

my $random = int(rand(10) + 1);
print "Random number between 1 and 10: $random\n";

Here, the variable random is assigned a random integer value between zero and ten, rounded down, plus one. The result is a whole number between 1 and 10.

Random number in Excel

You can create a random number in excel by using the rand or randbetween function. See our Excel formula page for help with these functions and examples.

Ascending order, Programming terms, Random seed, Shuffle