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Wednesday, October 27, 2004

e-voting is e-broken


And then the computer scientists showed up: Peter Neumann, principal computer scientist at R&D firm SRI; Barbara Simons, past president of the Association for Computing Machinery; and Stanford computer science professor David Dill. They had been fidgeting in the front of the room through three hours of what Dill would later call "garbage." Finally, they stood up and, one by one, made their case.

Voting, they explained, is too important to leave up to computers - at least, these types of computers. They're vulnerable to malfunction and mischief that could go undetected. Where they'd already been adopted, the devices - known in the industry as DREs, short for direct recording electronic - had experienced glitches that could have called into question entire elections. And they keep no paper record, no backup. "We said, 'Slow down. You've got a problem,'" recalls Neumann.

Wired - January 2004
Broken Machine Politics
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