Linked by snydeq on Mon 27th Oct 2008 17:24 UTC
Legal The mounting irregularities of closed-source proprietary e-voting systems clearly show the need for a new approach to securing elections in the U.S. -- one centered on the use of open source technologies, writes Paul Venezia. 'It's time for us to make good on the promise of open elections and open our e-voting systems as well,' Venezia writes, outlining the technical blueprint for a cheap, secure, open source e-voting system. The call for open voting systems has grown louder as of late, with several projects, such as Pvote and the Open Voting Consortium, demonstrating how the voting booth could benefit from open source code. Such systems are already securing elections in Australia and Brazil.
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Member since:

Believe it or not, there was a man who came up with a system like this several years ago, very similar to what you describe. It was called TruVote and was developed by a man called Athan Gibbs. Gibbs died in a highly-suspicious head-on collision in 2004.

Here's some of what the system offered:

"TruVote allows voters to touch their candidates' names on a computer screen and receive receipts of their vote at the end of the process. They can then go to a Web site, punch in their voter validation number and make sure their vote was recorded."


"After voters touch the screen, a paper ballot prints out under plexiglass and once the voter compares it to his actual vote and approves it, the ballot drops into a lockbox and is issued a numbered receipt. The voter's receipt allows the track his particular vote to make sure that it was transferred from the polling place to the election tabulation center."

As I stated, Athan Gibbs died before his dream was ever realized.

Edited 2008-10-28 14:13 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

CaptainN- Member since:

Even a system like that is simply not enough. It would be trivial to display the correct vote on the screen, both at the booth and over the net, and print the correct info on a paper receipt (which far too many people will simply not bother to check) but still tally up the vote to skew the results by greater than 5% or 10% in the end (scan-trons can do that too).

Recounts are usually only allowed if the vote tally is close enough (less than 3% or so, depending on the jurisdiction). Which leads to an easy solution for cheaters with e-voting machines - just steal it by greater than 3%.

Contrast that complicated, and expensive system with a hand filled out (verified by default) ballot, that is hand counted by many individual in a checked/balanced system. It's far cheaper, and far more difficult to bribe that many people.

As for getting more immediate voting results - you need only consult the polls. When not using these silly voting machines, they are quite accurate - which should raise alarm bells for anyone following the madness over these expensive, ineffective electronic voting machines.

Reply Parent Score: 1