Technology Was Only Part of the Florida Problem

By Bruce Schneier, Computer World |  Development

The ideal voting system would minimize the number of translation steps and make those steps remaining as simple as possible. My suggestion is an ATM-style computer voting machine that also prints out a paper ballot. The voter checks the paper ballot for accuracy, then drops it into a sealed ballot box. The paper ballots are the "official" votes and can be used for recounts, while the computer provides a quick initial tally.

With a clearly designed computer interface, this would be easy to use. With good error-handling, it would help reduce overvoting and undervoting. It would rely on computer software, with all those associated risks, but the paper ballots would provide the abiliity to recount by hand if necessary.

Voting is inherently a noisy system. We can spend money to improve its accuracy, but we can never get perfection.

So from a statistician's point of view, the presidential election in Florida was a tie.

Join us:
Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Tumblr

LinkedIn

Google+

Answers - Powered by ITworld

ITworld Answers helps you solve problems and share expertise. Ask a question or take a crack at answering the new questions below.

Join us:
Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Tumblr

LinkedIn

Google+

Ask a Question
randomness