Everyone knows a lava lamp. Everyone has seen those blobs of color go up and down and entice us with hippie feelings. The only perceived form of entertainment for tree huggers is much more than what you though it to be. The shapeless blobs not only look cool, they also help protect the internet. The reason you get to watch porn anonymously or send money to your loved ones without revealing your account info is because a huge all of Lava lamps helps protect the internet. 10% of it to be precise.
Prominent YouTuber Tom Scott gave us necessary insight into the wall of internet protecting lava lamps in Cloudflare Inc. Many of you may not know of the company but Cloudflare is a pretty big deal in internet security. Partially owned by Google, Cloudflare helps provide internet security to the sites you have been using for so long now like Uber and Fitbit. The sites without it’s protection would fall prey to Denial of Service or Ddos attacks that would make the sites go boom without a trace. And the secret weapon to prevent those attacks – Lava Lamps.
But how does it work, aren’t you confused? Let us enlighten you. The “Entropy Wall” of Lava Lamps is crucial in generating something that has eluded even the most powerful of computer systems for years – genuine randomness. Encryption keys help encrypt and decrypt data in servers and if somehow a hacker gets hold of the pattern then they can easily write a piece of code to replicate the keys and all is lost.
This is where the lava lamps come in. No one can predict how the lava lamps create those colorful blots. One is genuinely different from the next. Cloudflare uses a camera to take pictures of the Entropy Wall at regular intervals and then turn it into an encryption key.
“Every time that you take a picture with the camera… there’s going to be some noise,” says one of the Cloudflare employees in the video, “so it’s not only just where the bubbles are flowing through the lava lamp… every tiny change impacts the stream of data.” Which sounds super profound right? Or is that just the lava lamps talking?
Amazing isn’t it? The hippies are truly taking over the world. How would you feel like when you realize that the next time you use the internet, your virtual privacy depends on a bunch of lava lamps on a wall.