Re: Prerendering of GUI for voting machines

From: Arthur Keller <voting_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Mon Dec 03 2007 - 06:06:20 CST

At 12:31 AM -0800 12/3/07, Alan Dechert wrote:
>Arthur,
>
>>>It was not clear at the time that the decision to use a pre-rendered
>>>image that was made other than for expediency reasons.
>>
>> If we had at the time a system for creating the pre-rendered images
>> based on electronic ballot definition files, we'd have more of a case
>> for being cited.....
>>
>I disagree. It doesn't matter if expediency was a reason, or even the main
>reason. We all know that "Necessity is the mother of invention."
>
>If an idea is being promoted as a good idea in scholarly circles, it's
>always nice to say something about where the idea came from. I don't know
>if anyone else used a prerendered electronic picture to represent choices on
>a ballot before we did.

Yes, it is worthwhile saying where an idea came from. However, I do
not believe that there was any malice in not citing the OVC demo, as
our published papers did not indicate that the ballot image was
pre-rendered. And someone might have seen our demo without knowing
that the ballot image was pre-rendered. If we had a system for
creating pre-rendered images, then that fact would have been more
likely to have been documented in our papers and hence cited.

That real systems have features that are not documented in research
papers or manuals and the like is a key reason why patents are
granted on ideas that are reinventions. When the earlier invention
is not adequately disclosed, it cannot serve as prior art in
invalidating the patent. In our case, the feature of pre-rendering
was not adequately disclosed.

Someone may wish to look at the software on SourceForce and see if
that discloses the pre-rendering of ballot images. I'm not sure
whether the final version of the working, installable system with
installation instructions was ever loaded onto SourceForge.

Best regards,
Arthur

-- 
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Received on Mon Dec 31 23:17:03 2007

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