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Re: [school-discuss] License for an open-source voting system?

On Tue, 2008-08-12 at 23:55 -0700, Bill Ries-Knight wrote:

> I have been around the block on voting systems for years and have come
> to the conclusion that neither Traditional OpenSource nor Traditional
> proprietary code will do the task.
> For routine things, opensource is great.  For SECURE systems, not so
> much.
I must strongly disagree that that open source programming is relegated
to the routine tasks. The issue with electronic voting is transparency.
The only security requirements are that the code does what it is
supposed to do and ONLY what it is supposed to do. That, too, is handled
by the principles of transparency that only open source programming

With closed but "verified" source this only expands the number of people
required to effect fraud by a few. It also makes real programming
mistakes (the accidental ones that are going to exist in nearly any
project) visible to fewer eyes for resolution.

I have come to the conclusion that every aspect of the voting process
must be fully open for analysis by everyone. From the design and
components of the machines hardware to the process used to count,
verify, tally and present the scores, every aspect must be fully
available for review by everyone who wants to review it.

I personally like the big touchscreen displays. It makes the choosing
process quite simple. What I would like to see produced by these
touchscreens is only a single, card stock ballot that is printed, in
easy to read text, with an <office>=<choice> pattern. This can be
verified by humans and quickly counted by machine. We have the
technology to do this. Further, I would like to see the counting
machines produced by a separate company from those that make the
balloting machines. I also want to be able to feed my newly-printed
ballot into a counting machine and be able to verify that that machine
has correctly read my ballot accurately. 

In other words, I want full accountability for every aspect of what the
Constitution describes as my right to vote. Closed-source does not, and
can not, fulfill that requirement.

> my FWIW.
> Bill
> On Mon, Aug 4, 2008 at 3:20 AM, Joel Kahn <jj2kk4@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>         Here's an angle on FLOSS principles
>         applied to electronic voting systems:
>         http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/?p=1305
>         Be sure to look at the responses; this
>         posting really brought lots of analytical
>         nerds out of the woodwork.
>         I'm thinking the topic might have educational
>         value at the college level--maybe even high
>         school? Any ideas for ways to fit this into
>         a curriculum somehow?
>         Joel
> -- 
> -- 
> -- 
> Bill Ries-Knight
> Stockton, CA
> SaveStockton.org Just make it better!
> Read The Mayors Blog at http://savestockton.org/blog/mayor
> Why you have the wrong view. http://savestockton.org/chicken.html
> Respect the process, Vote.
> -- 
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James P. Kinney III          
CEO & Director of Engineering 
Local Net Solutions,LLC                           

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