Re: Alternatives to a single bar code

From: Arthur Keller <arthur_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Wed May 05 2004 - 11:41:26 CDT

At 11:43 AM -0400 5/5/04, David Mertz wrote:
>I second Alan's opinion that the data requirements are an empirical
>question. If 99% of elections can get by with the simpler 1-D
>barcode, we should stick with simple (for most jurisdictions). If
>lots of elections need 2-D, we should start working towards that.
>
>So first thing would be for someone to locate ONE historical
>election that can't fit in Code128. I am unaware of one. For
>example, the California Special Gubernatorial contest fits fine.
>Chicago judicial retentions with 40 Judges and a handful of
>Congresscritters, Senators, initiatives, etc fit fine (assuming a
>moderate number of candidates for each contested race).
>
>I'm not particularly a FAN of 1-D codes like Code128. Less so than
>I think Alan is (because he's too fond of the el-cheapo CueCats he
>found). I'm not an enemy of 1-D either. But before we conclude that
>Code128 will inevitably hit a storage limit, lets find some concrete
>evidence for that.

1. Will someone please describe the length of the bar code in bits in
components:

a. header info (including election date, machine number, ballot id, etc.)
b. votes
c. 2 DSS blocks
d. end-to-end check-code
e. ECC block
f. padding for obscuring

2. Multiple hardware configurations makes it harder to certify the
equipment. If *any* jurisdiction requires a 2-D bar code, then
that's what we need to get certified. We won't have the bandwidth to
support multiple hardware and software configurations, multiple
scanning codes, multiple etc. We need to simplify our software
configuration management and minimize the need to go through
certifications. In the fullness of time, we can think about multiple
configurations. But between now and 2006 election cycle, we should
focus on one, or maybe two comparable, configuration(s).

Best regards,
Arthur

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Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA  94303-4507
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Received on Mon May 31 23:17:15 2004

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