Re: I need some help

From: Ron Crane <voting_at_lastland_dot_net>
Date: Tue Apr 26 2005 - 10:13:10 CDT

On Apr 25, 2005, at 9:20 PM, Teresa Hommel wrote:

> Re financial transactions, there is a tracking number. In the case of
> checks it is the bank number, account number, and check number. The
> person gets a statement, which shows the check and the tracking
> information (date, check number, amount). In case of an inquiry, the
> bank's bookkeeping department can show the FBI each step of the
> processing of the check.
>
> Flight-control is not similar to transaction-capturing and
> -processing, but voting is a transaction-capturing and -processing
> application. Why did Shamos compare voting to flight-control? My
> assumption was that he was using what he knew, and he had once worked
> with a flight-control application.  You don't need documentation to
> prove that flight control systems are subject to rigorous pre-use
> procedures, because no one will argue this point --

I do need this documentation because it is yet another way in which
existing voting systems differ from flight systems.

> but they will argue that "so are voting systems."  You need to show
> that Shamos is comparing apples and oranges, because
> transaction-capture is error prone and always audited 100% by a human
> being -- every customer sooner or later personally views their
> transaction data and finds out if their transaction data was wrongly
> recorded or processed when they (1) get their statement (2) get their
> bill (3) get the correct item they ordered or a wrong item that they
> have to return (4) get the correct or wrong service visit from the
> cable technician, telephone installer, plumber, repair person, etc
> etc.

I have already made the point that financial systems involve feedback
that is audited by humans; see item 16 in my note posted 4/14. I want
also to make the additional point that financial software is subject to
stringent controls, which has not been the case for voting software
thus far.

>
> Teresa Hommel
>
> Ron Crane wrote:
>
> At Alan's request, I am writing a paper rebutting Prof. Shamos's
> recent paper that promotes DREs. I've got most of it in hand, but I
> need some help on three issues. Two of them should be easy for someone
> who knows, and one will require some work. I need all these by
> Thursday if possible. Here they are:
>
> 1. A few reliable cites for the proposition that flight-control
> software is subject to rigorous specification, implementation, review,
> and testing procedures.
>
> 2. A few reliable cites for the proposition that software used for
> major financial transactions (e.g. a bank's check-clearing system) is
> subject to tight standards (though probably not as tight as (1)).
>
> 3. I need someone who is well versed in OVC's system to read section
> 2.4 of Shamos's paper
> (http://euro.ecom.cmu.edu/people/faculty/mshamos/paper.htm#_edn1 ) and
> to write a technically solid rebuttal. Reward: naming as a co-author.
>
> Thanks!
>
> -Ron
>
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Received on Sat Apr 30 23:17:14 2005

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