Re: Ms. Tobi's overheated rhetoric

From: Arthur Keller <voting_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Mon Nov 12 2007 - 12:36:27 CST

For me, the most transparent method is to use a database not
connected to a network into which the totals from each precinct as
somehow entered. A CD is periodically burned with the incremental
totals (plus individual precinct totals), and this CD is entered into
a separate system for displaying the results to the web. That
separate system allows the download of a spreadsheet with whatever
individual precinct totals have come in so far. That spreadsheet
could be used to check against the posted precinct totals, which
could have been generated by hand-count or machine-count or a
combination of both.

I don't see how transparency can be provided without the use of
computers, and I've been thinking about this problem for several
years. Do you have a better answer?

Best regards,

At 12:32 PM -0500 11/12/07, Arlene Montemarano wrote:
>Clearly aggregation is exactly where cleverness is called for to
>maintain transparency in the chain of custody. But cleverness is
>aplenty for those who are motivated to use it.
>Lots of big brains out there.
>Arthur Keller wrote:
>>The problem is how you aggregate those precincts into an overall
>>total without transcription errors. While the DRE voting machines
>>have been attacked as potential sources of error or fraud, it is much
>>easier to hack the systems that add up the votes at County Central.
>>I understand that GEMS uses Microsoft Access with no logs and
>>essentially no security. Not enough attention has been focused on
>>the aggregation of the votes.
>>Aggregation of the votes in large urban areas is problematic even if
>>the precincts are hand-counted. And when the precincts are only
>>hand-counted, transcription errors are more likely than if the
>>precinct counts are transmitted in a form that is computer readable.
>>A compromise is to have the precinct totals printed on tally sheets
>>with bubbles (or lines to connect) from 0-9 for each digit of each
>>total to be reported.

Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA  94303-4507
tel +1(650)424-0202, fax +1(650)424-0424
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Received on Fri Nov 30 23:17:19 2007

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