E-Republic or B-Republic?
The electronic voting machines are running un-patched versions of either Windows NT 4.0 or Windows 98 on 400 to 500 Mhz PCs with 128 MBs of RAM. The machines are not networked at the polls, but instead have a floppy disk drive. They have a built in uninterruptible power supply, use a touch-screen LCD panel, and sport neither a mouse nor keyboard. There are locks on the floppy drive and power switch.
My source also confirmed that Diebold is still using a Microsoft Access database on the polling computers and presumed that the file copied to floppy is most likely a CSV (comma separated values) file.
Just the reliance on floppy disks seems like a disaster waiting to happen. They aren't the most reliable of storage media, nor are the drives tolerant of harsh environments. Then, there's the fact that Access is used on the polling systems and the central tabulating computer. The votes and audit log can both be manipulated without a trace.
Unless you support the United States of America as a Banana Republic, be sure to sign this petition, get involved, spread the word, and explain just how flimsy current electronic voting systems are to your less technically inclined friends and family.
Michael Brewer is a developer based near Charlotte, North Carolina. His interests include web development of various flavors, databases, and Java. One of the off-shoots of these activities is his website Brewed Thoughts.
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2004-05-27 14:10:26 colerobison [View]
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