Re: Alternatives to a single bar code

From: David Mertz <voting-project_at_gnosis_dot_cx>
Date: Wed May 05 2004 - 12:56:57 CDT

On May 5, 2004, at 1:33 PM, Karl Auerbach wrote:
> San Francisco is doing its first STV based election. If it catches on
> we
> will see a significant increase in the number of bits required to
> represent a ballot.

But the demo hypothetical already include a 8-choose-8 ranked
preference, so the sample numbers I've been showing kinda account for
that.

Then again, if we get to multiple ranked preferences on the same
ballot, we probably have more entropy than 1-D allows.

> There have been times when ballots here in California have had on the
> order of 40 to 50 races and questions.

The Cook County judicial retention example used 40 contests. But
again: 40 Judges+40 initiatives => 2-D barcode. Or 40 initiatives+1
ranked preference => 2-D.

> And a message digest, needed for digital signatures, is going to
> consume
> at least another 16 to 32 bits.

Sure. We have 1-D room for that though. See my bit numbers in
response to Arthur.

> To me the 2D stuff is a no brainer - it gets nearly two orders of
> magnitude more bits at no real increase in software cost and only a
> tiny
> increment (an increment that may fade away over time) in hardware cost.

Yeah... unlike Alan, I REALLY don't care about an extra $50-100 for a
better scanner.

The only concern I have is in the widespread availability of
well-tested Free Software tools for handling the various barcode types.
  My impression is that Code128 is on better footing here than PDF417.
But I might be wrong about this.
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Received on Mon May 31 23:17:16 2004

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