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April 2003

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Subject:
From:
Richard Leigh <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Wed, 30 Apr 2003 10:54:05 -0400
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WHAT'S NEW   Robert L. Park   Friday, 25 Apr 03   Washington, DC

1. ELECTRONIC VOTING: YOU THOUGHT "HANGING
CHADS" WERE A PROBLEM!
The Florida fiasco in the 2000 election sent officials across the
country scurrying to modernize voting in their jurisdictions.
Touch-screen electronic voting machines suddenly became a hot
technology. They are fast and convenient, but are they reliable,
tamper-proof and free of programing errors? There is absolutely
no way of knowing! The machine code is a proprietary secret of
the company that supplies them. This puts vote counting under
the full control of a private company, with no independent checks
or audits. Such machines are a serious threat to democracy, yet
few people are even aware that there is a controversy. Touch-
screen machines that print paper ballots would do, so long as the
voter can check the ballot, which would go in a secure box to be
available for manual counting. Opposition to paperless electronic
voting machines is being organized by David Dill, a computer
science prof at Stanford http://verify.stanford.edu/evote.html.
He is seeking signatures of technologists, on a statement to warn
the public of this threat to the integrity of the voting process.

************************************

Yes, Park is often reactionary, but the Bush administration seems to
be too much for him, and he's been putting out more and more
stuff like the above at http://www.aps.org/WN, especially on ABM
and weapons issues.


All the best,
Dick

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