Saturday, September 12, 2009

Voting quickie

My response to a query about electronic voting to a family member:

Anonymity, trust, transitive trust and identity. The bane of my life
in IT. I agree in that if there is a boundary e.g. entry point that you
can control, then once authenticated and subsequently authorized to perform
an action/event, then the accounting should only count and not record
the authentication details (except the number of events), and the
authorisation should only record that a party of type A *was* authorised
to cast a vote, and hadn't done so before.

I would have more faith in a system run by humans with physical bags
of votes, than a system run by humans with bags of bits that represent
votes. The time, space and economics e.g. physics of digital voting
represent an order of magnitude more complexity and potential design
issues than the previous version.

We put our trust in representatives e.g. humans along the way and I
for one have more trust in humans when less things can go wrong and
there is literally more visibility in the units, tokens etc..

... Just when you think people are starting to "get it" shit like this
gets posted in professional journals.

I would however like you to think about micro-voting and technology
facilitating faster and more frequent decision making by the electorate
on a wide range of topics including electing where their tax dollars go :)

1 comment:

Drazen Drazic said...

With you D. Shoot them all over a copy of Geekonomics. I'd go with the one that's harder to manipulate than one with a few keystrokes no matter how much I am told the latter is secure. :) Saying that, it's only a matter of time and we've never let security get in the way of a "good" idea.