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SampleSpace is a cross-platform library for describing and sampling from random distributions.

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SampleSpace: Cross-Platform Tools for Generating Random Numbers

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SampleSpace is a cross-platform library for describing and sampling from random distributions.

While SampleSpace is primarily intended for creating procedurally-generated content, it is also useful for Monte-Carlo simulations, unit testing, and anywhere that flexible, repeatable random numbers are required.


SampleSpace supports the following platforms:

  • Python — pysamplespace
  • C++ — In development
  • C# — In development

SampleSpace guarantees that the value of random sequences is consistent and serialized states are compatible across each platform implementation.


Installation is simple using pip:

$ pip install pysamplespace

SampleSpace's only dependency is xxHash, though it optionally offers additional functionality if PyYAML is installed.


All documentation is available at on Read the Docs.

SampleSpace provides the following submodules:

Repeatable Random Sequences

samplespace.repeatablerandom allows for generating repeatable, deterministic random sequences. It is compatible with the built-in random module as a drop-in replacement.

A key feature of RepeatableRandomSequence is its ability to get, serialize, and restore internal state. This is especially useful when generating procedural content from a fixed seed.

A RepeatableRandomSequence can also be used for unit testing by replacing the built-in random module. Because each random sequence is deterministic and repeatable for a given seed, expected values can be recorded and compared against within unit tests.

RepeatableRandomSequence produces high-quality pseudo-random values. See Randomness Test Results for results from randomness tests.

import samplespace

rrs = samplespace.RepeatableRandomSequence(seed=1234)

samples = [rrs.randrange(30) for _ in range(10)]
# Will always print:
# [21, 13, 28, 19, 16, 29, 28, 24, 29, 25]

# Generate some random values to advance the state
[rrs.random() for _ in range(90)]

# Save the state for later recall
# State can be serialzied to a dict and serialized as JSON
state = rrs.getstate()
state_as_dict = state.as_dict()
state_as_json = json.dumps(state_as_dict)
# Prints {"seed": 12345, "hash_input": "gxzNfDj4Ypc=", "index": 100}

# Will print 0.5940559149714152

# Generate some more values
[rrs.random() for _ in range(100)]

# Return the sequence to the saved state. The next value will match
# the value following when the state was saved.
new_state_as_dict = json.loads(state_as_json)
new_state = samplespace.repeatablerandom.RepeatableRandomSequenceState.from_dict(new_state_as_dict)
# Will also print 0.5940559149714152


samplespace.distributions implements a number of useful probability distributions.

Each distribution can be sampled using any random number generator providing at least the same functionality as the random module; this includes samplespace.repeatablerandom.

The classes in this module are primarily intended for storing information on random distributions in configuration files using Distribution.as_dict()/distribution_from_dict() or Distribution.as_list()/distribution_from_list().

Distributions can be serialized to strings:

from samplespace.distributions import Pareto, DiscreteUniform, UniformCategorical

pareto = Pareto(2.5)
print('Pareto as dict:', pareto.as_dict())  # {'distribution': 'pareto', 'alpha': 2.5}
print('Pareto as list:', pareto.as_list())  # ['pareto', 2.5]

discrete = DiscreteUniform(3, 8)
print('Discrete uniform as dict:', discrete.as_dict())  # {'distribution': 'discreteuniform', 'min_val': 3, 'max_val': 8}
print('Discrete uniform as list:', discrete.as_list())  # ['discreteuniform', 3, 8]

cat = UniformCategorical(['string', 4, {'a':'dict'}])
print('Uniform categorical as dict:', cat.as_dict())  # {'distribution': 'uniformcategorical', 'population': ['string', 4, {'a': 'dict'}]}
print('Uniform categorical as list:', cat.as_list())  # ['uniformcategorical', ['string', 4, {'a': 'dict'}]]

Distributions can be specified in configuration files:

from samplespace import distributions, RepeatableRandomSequence

city_config = {
    "building_distribution": {
        "distribution": "weightedcategorical",
        "items": [
            ["house", 0.2],
            ["store", 0.4],
            ["tree", 0.8],
            ["ground", 5.0]

rrs = RepeatableRandomSequence()
building_dist = distributions.distribution_from_dict(city_config['building_distribution'])

buildings = [[building_dist.sample(rrs) for col in range(20)] for row in range(5)]

for row in buildings:
    for building_type in row:
        if building_type == 'house':
            print('H', end='')
        elif building_type == 'store':
            print('S', end='')
        elif building_type == 'tree':
            print('T', end='')
            print('.', end='')


samplespace.algorithms implements several general-purpose sampling algorithms such as binary roulette wheel sampling and alias tables.

PyYAML Support

SampleSpace provides optional support for PyYAML, which can be enabled via the samplespace.pyyaml_support submodule.

Repeatable Random Sequences:

import yaml
from samplespace import RepeatableRandomSequence
import samplespace.pyyaml_support

rrs = RepeatableRandomSequence(seed=678)
[rrs.randrange(10) for _ in range(5)]

# Serialize the sequence as YAML
as_yaml = yaml.dump(rrs) # '!samplespace.rrs\nhash_input: s1enBV+SSXk=\nindex: 5\nseed: 678\n'

rrs_from_yaml = yaml.load(as_yaml, Loader=yaml.FullLoader)


import yaml
from samplespace import distributions
import samplespace.pyyaml_support

gamma = distributions.Gamma(5.0, 3.0)
gamma_as_yaml = yaml.dump(gamma) # '!samplespace.distribution\nalpha: 5.0\nbeta: 3.0\ndistribution: gamma\n'

dist_from_yaml = yaml.load(gamma_as_yaml, Loader=yaml.FullLoader)

Copyright and License

SampleSpace was created by Coriander V. Pines and is available under the BSD 3-Clause License.

The source is available on GitLab.

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