Thursday, September 14, 2006

Electronic Voting

I don't worry about voting irregularities in Oklahoma. Our system works pretty good, and I'll feel confident using it.  You go to the booth, you fill our your card with a permanent marker, and then you run it through a computer scanner.  The machine immediately tells you if you've made a mistake and rejects it.  If there's no mistake, the computer gives you the green light and your done.  The computer records your answers, and there's a paper backup if something catastrophic happens.

Luckily, we don't have to worry about them here, but I'm 100% against electronic voting machines where you cast your vote via a touch screen.  It sounds cool, but having a background writing computer software, I don't trust them.  If I vote for candidate A and a computer bug says I voted for B, a recount would be useless because there's no paper trail.  I've heard some machines produce a voting receipt.  Still, the machine is producing the output, not me, so it could still be prone to error.

I read yesterday that the electronic voting machine makers were doing a really good job of promoting and selling them, but when it came to technical support and maintenance, they left a lot to be desired.  Now, a Princeton professor claims to have hacked an electronic voting machine.  You can read about it here:

So I'm more like 110% against them now.

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