Why is there so much controversy over something as simple as a voting machine? The people at Diebold must be absolute idiots. Any dumbass who’s dabbled in REALbasic can tell you how to make a good and secure touch-screen voting machine.
And because I am fortunate enough to own this weblog, I can impose my opinions on whoever I want and thus, PROVIDE A SOLUTION!
A voter walks into a voting center and signs in. The clerk who signs the person in tells the computer he’s signed in, and that syncs up with a database on the internet, which in turn gets synced up with every other voting center computer (this would also eliminate the problem of people voting in the wrong precinct, a problem which the conservatives of the world seem to be highly against solving). Our voting machine requires some kind of sign in measure to ensure against voting multiple times. To this end, I suggest the same kind of tickets they use in parking garages (at least the one I work at). They could be date-and-time stamped to ensure that a voter votes within, say, 15 minutes of signing in (this could ensure someone doesn’t make fake tickets). They could also still be anonymous – having the ticket is enough to ensure that they are registered, and doesn’t need to carry any physical information to the voting machine.
The voter walks into a booth. He would insert the ticket into the machine, and would be prompted for his vote. VERY IMPORTANT – the user MUST still be able to abstain from voting in a category. If he is required to vote for everyone, he’ll say “I don’t know anything about which district judge I want…I’ll just pick this one.”
The system should be designed on a system that is much more secure than Windows (read: OPEN SOURCE).
When the votes are all cast, a paper receipt is printed behind a transparent piece of plastic (can’t get to it). It goes down so far so that the person can see it. Then an approve-disapprove button gets pressed on the screen. If it’s disapproved, it gets shredded. If it’s approved, it’s carted away.