Re: Glossary from NIST/EAC

From: Alan Dechert <dechert_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Mon Apr 04 2005 - 14:24:14 CDT

Thanks, David. I think we should try for "open voting." We can refer
to Irwin Mann's paper.

     We refer to such a system as an "open voting system".
     Such a system is defined as one where:

     - every element of every component, both hardware
       and software, is in the public domain,

     - there are built-in capabilities for independent
       monitoring of software, and

     - there are institutionalized protocols for public
       monitoring of all components and the electoral
       process, sufficient to find any hypothetical
       discrepancy from the intended design, if it should
       happen to exist.

I would interpret hardware "in the public domain" to mean COTS -- not
necessarily that processor microcode needs to be public.

Summary paper ballot may be thought of as a subset of VVPB, but we
really want a separate entry for that. This is probably the most
important thing we're after here. The summary paper ballot is
analgous to the party ticket of 100+ yrs ago whereby the voter turned
in a piece of paper that included his or her selections and not other
choices that were available.

I will also suggest the term "auditable" or "auditability" -- often
used by Roy Saltman in reference to features of a voting system that
enable meaningful [and practical] audit procedures to be carried out
on election results.

"User Centered Design" may be beyond the scope here but I like to try
to get that in there as well.

Here's some language that may be useful for that definition:

     It calls for a multidisciplinary team to design
     everything the user sees and touches and to
     gather user input and feedback during each
     stage of the development process.

Alan D.

On Apr 4, 2005 11:12 AM, David Mertz <> wrote:
> > I just received this email from the EAC. We need to add at least two
> > terms to the glossary:
> > 1) Summary paper ballot
> > 2) Open Voting
> I will make a comment to NIST. We need them to include VVPB (Voter
> Verified Paper Ballot) as a contrast with all those lesser VV*
> acronyms. Summary paper ballot is a subset of VVPB, and I'll include
> the relevant "see also" type stuff.
> I dunno about "Open Voting" though. It's good as the name of our
> group, but I can't really think of a technical definition of it for
> NIST. "The good guys" doesn't seem to be the level they're looking for
> :-).
> I'm tempted to suggest Public Software as a term. But the attempts at
> a license seem sketchy and crude at this point, nothing I could really
> suggest as an academic citation. Free Software is better referencable,
> so maybe I'll just mention that.
> If anyone else--especially anyone with some nice initials or
> affiliations--would like to join a comment with me, it might be helpful
> to have multiple signers. And, of course, I presume you would have you
> your own comments. Joe? Charlie? Kathy? Others?
> Not to say that everyone else should not be encouraged to make
> independent comments if they prefer that route.
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Received on Sat Apr 30 23:17:01 2005

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