TSA Pre-Check is faster, but it also includes random searches and that’s where the Randomizer app comes in. The app randomly chooses whether travelers go left or right in the Pre-Check lane. That way, nobody can predict which lane each person is assigned to and therefore can’t figure out how to avoid the random checks.

Here’s the app in action:

So how much did the TSA pay to have the Randomizer iPad app developed? At least $336,413.59.

That’s $336,413.59 for an app that does nothing more than randomly select left or right a few hundred times an hour.

We know this thanks to developer Kevin Burke, who submitted a Freedom of Information Act request asking for details about the app. And if you think paying over $336,000 for an app like this is ridiculous, well, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

The contract for the TSA Randomizer app was won by IBM. The total paid for the project is actually $1.4 million, but the cost is not broken down in the documents Burke received in response to his request. It could be IBM supplied all the iPads and training as well as the app itself. Even so, the cost of the project is crazy. It’s an app that is just randomly selects left or right.

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Michael Bailey
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