Re: securing electronic ballots

From: Alan Dechert <alan_at_openvotingconsortium_dot_org>
Date: Thu Nov 27 2003 - 14:39:04 CST


> Especially seeing as to how little these machines will be used
> (a few times a year max). This also removes the advantage of
> EVM2003 being able to use "inexpensive" hardware.
For what it's worth [speculating], I doubt counties will ever OWN the voting
machines we are proposing. The storage costs would likely exceed the value
of the trailing edge systems. For example, the PC (200mhz) that I run my
Barcode Vocalization Application (BVA) on has a market value very close to
zero. It's comparable to this Dell on eBay that just sold for $3.25.

The BVA application runs great on this machine and there is no conceivable
advantage of using a more powerful computer for this purpose. How much do
you suppose it would cost for a county to store this unit in a secure
climate controlled warehouse for 360 days a year? If it's more than a penny
a day, it exceeds the value of the unit. I think it's more than a penny a
day -- much more.

My hunch is that vendors will rent the equipment for an election to
jurisdictions. The contracts with counties will say something like

"XYZ Corp agrees to deliver and setup 800 PCs with laser printers to the 100
locations listed below (8 per location) on [date] and remove them on [date].
These PC setups are guaranteed to correctly run the OVC software and have
been tested, cleaned, and certified in accordance to OVC specification
x.yyy.zz" and so on ...

If XYZ Corp rents each set up for $200 for a couple of days they'd make some
nice money and the counties would be paying a small fraction of what it
would cost to purchase, store, and maintain a DRE.


> I'm unconvinced that a "GAP" would cause a problem, the real numbers that
> should be in question are the number of ballots cast and the number of
> ballots in the box. The number of ballots in the box should never be more
> than the number reported by the computer systems.
Yes. I agree with you here. Thanks, Rick.

Alan D.
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Received on Sun Nov 30 23:17:11 2003

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