Ohio goes Optical scan

From: charlie strauss <cems_at_earthlink_dot_net>
Date: Thu Jan 13 2005 - 13:24:26 CST

With Ohio going optical scan and the possibility New Mexico may be about to consider this too, I would like to put together a requirements reccomendation document for optical scan simmilar to the one I circulated here on electronic voting systems. This might be off-topic for ovc--though I would expect high interest--feel free to e-mail me directly with comments about suggested requirements for dealing with optical scan. Also what are its pit falls?

I've looked a little into it and there are some issues to consider. First current systems are not open source but I wonder if they could be made open source. The model 100 from ES&S for example, is based on QNX (a real-time high-relaibily unix--a choice suggesting some thought might have been put into the design phase!). QNX comes in closed source and open source versions I believe. I believe they use aproprietary version. I wonder how hard it would be to switch (probably gets ugly with device drivers).
some systems only have 3 or 4 sensors. this limits things. for example it puts some constraints on Instant Runoff Voting. But that is going to be slightly problematic to do compactly on paper anyhow. SF had to use four pages of ballots in their IRV election I am told. So maybe this is not an issue?

An issue that materialized in this election (and this affects OVC too) was that when A recount is done, you dont get to recount the whole ballot just the contested race. In Ohio this manifest itself with them having to re-program the old machines to selectively recount just the race in question. This of course led to all those rigging accusations when Triad went around and monkied with voting machines without proper supervision.

Are there other issues like that for optical scan?

if one is going to do a Targeted Recount how should this be done: would you count whole precints or count individual machines?

let me know

-----Original Message-----
From: "Edmund R. Kennedy" <ekennedyx@yahoo.com>
Sent: Jan 13, 2005 10:51 AM
To: ovc-discuss@listman.sonic.net
Subject: [OVC-discuss] A funny thing happened on the way to the future.


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