Re: Reflections on the election and implications for the OVC

From: Scott Brown <r_dot_scott_dot_brown_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Fri Nov 05 2004 - 13:16:50 CST

If I can jump in here, I'd like to cast my vote against the idea of
using gaming technology for the EVM system. From a purely technical
perspective, I think it's a fine idea. However, even besides the
licensing issues Laird raises, I'm not so sure teaming up with MS,
Sony and Nintendo would be great PR.

On the contrary, I'm afraid it would color other people's view of the
OVC as not being serious about solving the problem at hand. As a
grassroots movement, OVC will encounter (and I'm sure already has
encountered) many political obstacles. At some point - hopefully in
the not-too-distant future - OVC will have to sell (not literally) our
ideas to the mainstream public. I fear that being based on gaming
technology would increase the risk of being marginalized by our target

Let me be clear that I don't think there's anything wrong with the
technology, but from a purely political perspective, I don't think
it's a good idea.

Furthermore, I would suggest that keeping costs to an absolute
minimum, while a laudable goal, should be far from the top of the
list. In convincing others of the importance of creating secure,
auditable voting machines, it's possible that having a shockingly
inexpensive solution could be a hindrance. Some people just won't
believe that a solution that costs $250 per installation cannot
possibly be as secure and effective as another system that costs 10
times as much - regardless of the truth. I am NOT suggesting that the
OVC deliberately engineer a more expensive system, simply that final
production costs shouldn't necessarily be a driving factor.

-- Scott

On Thu, 4 Nov 2004 17:15:08 -0500, laird popkin <> wrote:
> - Of the console vendors, only MS is losing money on their consoles.
> So for the Xbox you're right -- MS probably wouldn't want you to use
> Xboxes for voting stations. However (1) Sony and Nintendo make a
> profit selling their consoles so they might be perfectly happy, (2)
> even if they don't like it, we don't need their permission to buy and
> use their consoles, and (3) a console used to run an election every
> two years can be used to play games the rest of the time, presumably
> selling more games. :-)
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Received on Tue Nov 30 23:17:11 2004

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