Re: Barcode Redux

From: Arthur Keller <arthur_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Fri Jun 04 2004 - 18:03:02 CDT

At 9:33 AM -0500 6/4/04, Jeff Almeida wrote:
>After wading through the sea of messages regarding barcodes in the last
>week, I've found myself inclined to agree with the people who think
>they're a bad idea, but for a slightly different reason: it's not that it
>may or may not admit confidence in what IS encoded (which I think you can
>reasonably dispell with disclaimers like the one proposed), it's about
>deniability of what IS NOT encoded....
>Put more bluntly, it is impossible for a warm, fuzzy biped to satisfy
>himself that a ballot containing a printed barcode DOES NOT contain any
>personally identifiable information on it; this could be a HUGE deal in,
>say, jurisdictions where voter registration is being accomplished by smart
>card. While some of us wear our politics on our sleeve (and shirt, and
>pockets, and websites, and so on), and don't particularly concern
>ourselves therefore with the privacy of our votes, there are a lot of
>people who vote in the face of political and/or social pressures otherwise
>for whom the thought of identifiability on a ballot could be a terrifying
>(think, for example, of domestic violence as a form of voter coercion)
>So, unless we can formulate some unresolvable use case that compels us to
>use the barcodes, I'd say we should dump them altogether in a bow to voter
>confidence -- which is, after all, the ultimate driving force for the

We don't have OCR working for reading ballots. So unless and until
we have OCR reliably working we need bar codes.

Best regards,

Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA  94303-4507
tel +1(650)424-0202, fax +1(650)424-0424
= The content of this message, with the exception of any external 
= quotations under fair use, are released to the Public Domain    
Received on Wed Jun 30 23:17:06 2004

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Wed Jun 30 2004 - 23:17:29 CDT