Additional Questions for eVoting Panel

The Digital Democracy Teach-In is Monday and I think its going to be great. There's over 170 people registered and that's not counting speakers. Here are a few additional questions for my eVoting panel.

  • Jim Flowers, who has been involved in Georgia state government in a number of posts says "For Georgia going back [to paper ballots or voting machines] is simply not an option. The panel needs to understand that the paper ballot systems Georgia used, and the old mechanical machines (from the 1930's),which did not have a paper trail, yielded a higher undercount than Florida in 2000. Plus, there is the matter of some $52 million spent replacing the old machines."
  • Is eVoting here to stay? Is there a significant difference between existing eVoting machines and their mechanical cousins? If we've lived with mechanical voting machines for 100 years, why are we so worried about electronic voting machines?
  • David Sklar asks the following question: "If I want to make and sell a slot machine, the Nevada Gaming Commission audits my code. If I write software that controls an airplane, the FAA reviews my code and development practices. Shouldn't our standards for machines that protect democracy be at least as strict as our standards for machines that protect our ability to gamble fairly and fly around safely?"
  • Scott Ritchie, a California college student has proposed bringing open source eVoting software from Australia and modifying it to meet the demands of the California Secretary of State. Is this really a viable option?
  • ATMs seem to be able to give us a reliable paper trail of our finances, what makes this so hard in voting?