ELECTION: Dan Bricklin thinks the ballots sucked, too.
November 20, 2000 10:07 AM   Subscribe

ELECTION: Dan Bricklin thinks the ballots sucked, too. Remember him? He helped write VisiCalc, and now runs Trellix? I'm still wondering why no one's agitating to invalidate that election in PBC.
posted by baylink (6 comments total)
Actually, Jay, that's exactly what was ruled on this morning. It was considered a long shot (I don't even agree with the suggestion of a new election).

Since punch-cards lost the approval of the Federal Election Commission some years ago, I thinkt hey'll simply accelerate their departure. If the Democrats are smart, they'll push hard for that: some back-of-the-envelope calculations show that if as suggested punch-cards still cover 1/3 of the country, and 2/3 of their coverage is urban districts, and they conservatively have error rates of 35 per 1000, that could easily mean some 750,000 uncounted Democratic ballots versus 350,000 Republican.

I think this is more important than reforming the electoral college (and most of the suggestions, IMHO, would further dilute Dem power).
posted by dhartung at 10:24 AM on November 20, 2000

Oh yes. Having a balloting system that accurately counts votes is a far, far better goal, and a more attainable one through grass-roots efforts at the state level.
posted by kindall at 11:10 AM on November 20, 2000

No argument. I'm pleased to hear that the County judge turned it down; that means that when he's reversed on appeal it will count as precedent.

I'm having a *ball* listening to the judges spank the lawyers. Lawyers, in general, *are not* used to being asked questions, at least not trial lawyers; it's a bit different for appellate lawyers, I guess.

Bush's lawyer is taking a *beating*. I hope the transcripts come up somewhere quickly...
posted by baylink at 12:47 PM on November 20, 2000

As a followup, Dan, given the obvious statistical anomalies in only *that* county, how would you justify *not* fixing what was broken down there, given the stakes?
posted by baylink at 12:49 PM on November 20, 2000

More important, *why* would I justify not fixing what was broken? eh?

Getting back OT, I think that a nationwide Ballot Usability Project would be something that all the UI geeks could get into. Looking at existing designs and critiquing them. Lending knowledge to the process. The Palm Beach ballot may not have an easy legal remedy, but it should never happen again.

Or we could re-implement intelligence tests before voting, just so the "wrong" people don't vote. They might vote for the "wrong" person!
posted by dhartung at 8:18 PM on November 20, 2000

Oh, Jay, I get the context now (sometimes hard without threading, y'know).

It's simply that the only obvious equitable solution, a re-vote, is fraught with so many other ramifications that it's ludicrously impossible. Better we take the lesson, absorb it, and fix things for next time.
posted by dhartung at 9:22 PM on November 20, 2000

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