Re: tabulation

From: Paul Kinzelman <paul_at_kinzelman_dot_com>
Date: Tue Feb 22 2005 - 11:44:51 CST

Very interesting proposal, could be a great template for other states.
But I didn't see any actual *numbers* in there and bills at least here
apparently have to have actual numbers for costs. And I agree about
the future savings (in fact, it could be argued we would have saved over
$200B if bush had properly lost in 2000), but the state bills here at
least apparently need to have an actual cost when proposed.
I'll pass this along to the NM group for them to use.

At 10:11 AM 2/22/2005, you wrote:

>Paul Kinzelman wrote:
>>That's all good background/technical info, but what I was really looking
>>for was
>>practical information.
>>In other words, I talked with a state senator, he sounded sympathetic,
>>but the first words out of his mouth were "How much will it cost".
>This isn't really an answer to your question Paul, but if you read this it
>shows how the OVC system will save states money in the long run:
>Hopefully someone else will answer your question more fully.
>>The OVC web has some info about the voting machines themselves
>>(can be obsolete PCs), but I was wondering more about the cost of the
>>tabulating stuff. Can existing paper ballot tabulating machines be
>>reprogrammed and used?
>>Do you have any sources for machines for purchase? How much?
>>At 06:11 PM 2/21/2005, you wrote:
>>>Hello Paul,
>>>for starters. There is a lot of stuff in the wiki. IMHO I like Doug
>>>Jones work althougth Keith Copenhagen's work can give you interesting
>>>insights. There are various issues that occur to me:
>>>1. Wholesale versus retail fraud.
>>>2. What to focus on first.
>>>Here's some additional information:
>>>The current and generally most effective process is that those paper
>>>ballots that are marked or printed out are ran throug an optical ballot
>>>scanner. The optical scanner is a specialized optical scanner that has a
>>>row of LED's and photo detectors. The machines automatically pull the
>>>document through the reader and deliver the ballots into a sealed box
>>>for recount as needed. The scanner readouts are translated into votes
>>>and written to a data chip. OVC proposes using a 2-d bar code system but
>>>that's a whole another story. The data chip is removable and is held in
>>>place mechanically and with a tamper evident seal. Unless something
>>>unusual goes on, the chip is what gets read into the tabulation
>>>system. Also, a paper tape is generated at the beginning and end of the day.
>>>Also, a reconciliation process similar to the daily sweep done between
>>>the cash in a cash register and the paper tape totals from that
>>>register, has to be done. In this case, the reconciliation has to occur
>>>between the number of votes recorded on the chip and physical ballots
>>>sitting in the ballot box. Also, don't forget reconciling provisional
>>>ballots, spoiled ballots and absentee ballots turned in at the polling place.
>>>Oh yes, all 50 states have a different approach, and within each state,
>>>each county may vary from the state standard. Perhaps the scarest
>>>variations occur at the 100's of polling places in each county. As poll
>>>workers usually get zip training and are generally exhasted by the time
>>>canvassing starts (a poll worker' s day start at 0600 and can easily go
>>>to 2100 and beyond) they may blow off most of what they are suppose to
>>>do in canvassing the vote so they can go home. Some states that use
>>>paper ballots have the ballot taken to the County Registrar's office and
>>>machine counted there. Some other states or counties actually count the
>>>ballots by hand.
>>>As always, here's our most common comment:
>>>" We've been working on this project for several years and we've
>>>discussed a lot of stuff. If you can't find it here, you might try our
>>>searchable correspondence site
>>> "
>>>HTH, Ed Kennedy
>>>Paul Kinzelman wrote:
>>>>Forgive what might be a stupid question, I didn't see it addressed
>>>>in the FAQs, but have you folks addressed issues about how
>>>>to tabulate all the paper ballots printed out by the open source
>>>>And has anybody contacted the
>>>>folks? What you're doing I think dovetails quite well with the
>>>>issues they bring up.
>>>>-Paul Kinzelman, Peralta, NM
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Received on Sun Feb 27 17:17:07 2005

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