Compuphobia’ is my word for the ongoing irrational fear of using the Internet for voting. It amazes me that it is people who have little understanding of computers and computer safeguards who are blocking the simple step to using the Internet for voting. It is finally a by-election in Preston, Nova Scotia that is claimed to being used to test a secure system. It is only when you listen to the details of the system, that you realize that they are using computer tablets to print the ballots for the voters.
This is not computerized voting.
The test in Preston is using a tablet to mark the ballot. It is only coincidental that the system counts the ballots, before printing them. It is the paper copies that are supposed to be used if there is a judicial recount.
But they have solved the problem of spoiled ballots. The computer does not spoil them. If they are marked for a specific candidate, then that candidate gets the vote. When you stop and think about it, why would you need a judicial recount? The judge only rules on questionable ballots. The computer does not print questionable ballots.
We all have a lot to learn on this subject. My kid brother has a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and is a retired professor, whose hobby is designing secure computer systems.
But any locked door requires a key. That is the weakness to any secure system. You have to trust the person or persons with the key.
It is why I have always been skeptical of the conservative party leadership contests, with the with the ranked balloting and the weighting to 100 votes per electoral district. Everyone waits breathlessly for the next counting as they drill down the count. Yet we all know that the count is measured in minutes on the computers. The people running the computer program are just catering to the anticipation.
I think we should all forget the ‘James Bond’ style spy. The secret operatives for countries of the future will be computer programmers.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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