(Quick note: As previously stated, the lottery was due to be run today. Due to an unfortunate Quicket situation (involving weather and power outages – rain just loves to mess with Kiwiburn…) we will unfortunately need to delay the lottery until tomorrow. The lottery will now be drawn Wednesday evening.)
How are you feeling right now? Excited? Nervous?
If you’re anything like us, you’re probably feeling both!
Well tomorrow is THE day!
We get to channel our inner Charlie and hope we get the golden ticket.
It’s more exciting than Christmas! So, while we wait to see who’s going to be heading to the ̶c̶h̶o̶c̶o̶l̶a̶t̶e̶ ̶f̶a̶c̶t̶o̶r̶y̶ Paddock, we thought we’d discuss how the winners are chosen.
Is it random? Is it fair?
Do we, the full year volunteers, get to choose 2 of our friends each?
̶Y̶e̶s̶. No, obviously not.
That wouldn’t be very fair now would it?
No, we put all the names in a hat and choose one at a time.
Ok fine, that’s also not true.
Can you imagine how long that would take?
Luckily for us, Quicket developed a fast and fair way of deciding who gets the tickets.
Here’s the lowdown:
There is no such thing (yet) as algorithmic randomness in computing, which is why Quicket came up with a creative solution of generating a seed to create randomness from none other than a braai (South African BBQ).
The seed is the unpredictable thing that is situated within the real world, which would be nearly impossible to predict.
The team set up a stop motion camera that photographed the braai at intervals. A temperature sensor within the braai then monitored its heat. When the braai reached 50 degrees Celsius, the image at that moment was used to create the seed. The seed itself is an MD5 hash (encryption) of the image at that moment. This seed was then used to generate the randomness in the lottery, being the unknown element in the algorithm. The following year, they used a pot of water to reach boiling point at any given time. What will they think of this year?
If you would like to learn a bit more about this approach, have a look at this video.
Kiwiburn was in no way involved in the randomisation, this process was supervised entirely by the Quicket team, and the randomisation itself was solely in the hands of Mother Nature’s very own Fire Gods.
Assuming your eyes didn’t glaze over reading that technical language, now you know how it’s decided and that it’s fair.
Now all you need to do is wait and see if you’re one of the lucky ones. Fingers crossed!