RE: [Full-Disclosure] University Researchers Challenge Bush Win In Florida
From: Todd Towles (toddtowles_at_brookshires.com)
To: "Paul Schmehl" <firstname.lastname@example.org>, "Jason Coombs" <email@example.com>, "Gregory Gilliss" <firstname.lastname@example.org>, <email@example.com> Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 13:41:20 -0600
Did the charter say something about political messages?..please take it
off the list guys if possible...
> -----Original Message-----
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of
> Paul Schmehl
> Sent: Wednesday, November 24, 2004 11:22 AM
> To: Jason Coombs; Gregory Gilliss; firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: Re: [Full-Disclosure] University Researchers
> Challenge Bush Win In Florida
> --On Wednesday, November 24, 2004 05:39:31 AM +0000 Jason
> Coombs <email@example.com> wrote:
> > In the case in point, even with the variables you mention,
> the entire
> > technical problem can be reduced to observing how the election
> > officials in various places have historically constructed
> ballots and
> > influence just those that can be influenced in just those
> states where
> > it will matter. The Republican party (my party) apparently has
> > advantages over others when it comes to influencing the technical
> > details of the design of voting machines. Diebold, for example.
> The horse has already been packed up and shipped from the
> rendering plant, but I'll give this *one* more try. (One
> side note - the management of Diebold are mostly Democrats,
> not Republicans, not that *that* makes one iota of difference
> in the competence (or lack thereof) in designing electronic
> balloting equipment. Pointing to someone's party affiliation
> as proof of something is merely a distraction from the real issues.)
> You are talking about an extremely complex and unlikely set
> of possibilities, *all* of which have to fall into place
> perfectly for this to happen. It might be fun as
> speculation, but the implementation would be nigh until
> impossible and would take some real genius to pull off.
> > It makes just about as much sense for every regional
> election office
> > to do their ballot construction differently as it does for
> everyone to
> > create their own home grown crypto.
> And yet it's done all over America. Imagine that.
> > Your point about differences in ballot construction is also a red
> > herring to begin with. If you think that there is the same
> degree of
> > variability with ballots in electronic voting machines as there is
> > with legacy ballots, then perhaps you are the one who does not know
> > how the process really works with the machines in question.
> Why would you assume the ballots all have to be the same just
> because the same machines are being used to count them?
> Given three candidates for President (and there are usually
> more than that) there are at least six different ways the
> ballot could be arranged *even* if the basic design was the same.
> Furthermore, the methodology used by an electronic voting
> machine is independent of the ballot design, for all intents
> and purposes. For example, an optical reader merely senses
> the dark spots where a vote has been cast. *Which* candidate
> that represents is determined by the configuration, which is
> determined by the construction of the ballot.
> Having to fit within certain machine-driven parameters does
> not force the ballot design into one pattern. The votes
> could be on the left, in the center, on the right, staggered
> from left to right, staggered from right to left. The
> possibilities are great.
> Yet you want to control *all* of that to "take advantage of
> statistical anomalies" in the equipment?
> Do we have a mathematician on this list who can calculate the
> probabilities of this?
> I would contend that it is infinitely more likely that the
> machines would be either deliberately tampered with or
> incompetently misconfigured, ending up in statistical
> anomalies then I would ever consider your scenario possible.
> > You really need to stop making things seem so complicated that the
> > difficulty of influencing their behavior or outcome
> couldn't possibly
> > be surmounted.
> Jason, I'm not making anything complicated. I'm observing
> the complication that already exists - the complication that
> you apparently refuse to acknowledge.
> Paul Schmehl (firstname.lastname@example.org)
> Adjunct Information Security Officer
> The University of Texas at Dallas
> AVIEN Founding Member
> Full-Disclosure - We believe in it.
> Charter: http://lists.netsys.com/full-disclosure-charter.html
Full-Disclosure - We believe in it.