Re: Brand new concept in audit trails

From: Edmund R. Kennedy <ekennedyx_at_yahoo_dot_com>
Date: Thu May 05 2005 - 09:43:28 CDT

Hello David and Jim:

OK, I stand corrected on the availability of
perforated paper. However, I still don't see that
paper splitter that everyone is talking about. Did
you really expect that poll workers are going to tear
each and every ballot by hand? Honestly, I do like
the basic simplicity of the idea (shall we call it
'audit ballots'?) but y'all seem to be proposing some
awful complicated ways to go about it. Whatever
happened to KISS?

Jim, there already will be two audit trails; the
actual ballots and the electronic ballot images. I
view 'Aunt Millie's audit ballots' as a third audit
trail that can fail without completely catastrohpic
results. Besides, have you forgotten that printer
failure is one of the DRE manufacturers red herrings
they are always using as an excuse to support their
wonderful paperless systems? If we're going to say
that printers are reliable for one ballot why won't
they be reliable for a second ballot?

I've recently realized that we creative and
engineering types tend to start complicatd and end up
simple (ideally). When I'm writing a complex report,
the original draft is usually quite long and complex.
If all goes well, by the time I'm finished with the
first windy draft of something, I find I can write out
a few sentences or paragraphs at the end of that draft
actually does a better job of the report than all that
has gone before. Usually what I do is cut that last
stuff out and paste it into the beginning of the
report. Then I label the rest of the stuff as
supporting documentation. Similarly, you've got a
good idea that we can develope but now we've got to do
the hard work of simplifying it. While I'd like to
think I've got THE ANSWERS, expereince tells me that I
might want to be a little bit modest.

Thanks, Ed Kennedy

--- David Mertz <> wrote:
> On May 4, 2005, at 11:27 PM, Ed Kennedy wrote:
> > I'm not sure I've ever seen a device that slits
> paper along the lines
> > discussed below in my local office supply or
> computer technology
> > store.
> Quick web search shows:
> We could get either horizontal or vertical
> perforation into two
> sections:
> If we wanted to follow the idea of Joseph Hall and
> others for
> separating each contest to prevent the ability for
> later correlation of
> votes[*], we could select one of the styles that is
> perforated into
> more than two parts.
> I'm not endorsing that particular store, nor have I
> done price
> comparisons. But it doesn't look like this is an
> unusual or difficult
> to obtain paper product.
> [*] I think my example about the local sheriff
> knowing who has Green
> Party signs (or Libertarian, etc) in their yard is a
> good illustration.
> It's not hard to notice the Green prez votes voted
> against the
> sheriff, and provide less police service on that
> basis.
> Moreover, I think that maintaining each of the
> vote slips separately
> probably fulfills open records laws. All the votes
> are still retained,
> just not their correlation on the same ballot.
> Ballot formatting would
> need to match the perforation lines under this
> arrangement, but that's
> hardly prohibitive (at least assuming "normal"
> ballots; not those 80
> judicial confirmation monsters that we've discussed
> before).
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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:20 2005

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