Photos: E-voting gets touchy
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A visitor tries out Automark’s electronic voting system at the NationalrnFederation of the Blind conference in July 2005. The Voter AssistrnTerminal is designed for use by people who aren’t able to personallyrnmark a ballot as a result of physical impairments or language barriers,rnthe company says. A paper printout of the finished ballot is provided tornvoters.
The Automark VAT, seen here in production, is a hybrid of severalrndevices: scanner, printer, touch screen display and input device. Therndata for a given poll, such as a candidate’s name, is stored on arncompact flash card, a storage technology used in digital cameras.rnOfficials can customize the data–for example, they can give phoneticrnpronunciation of names for use in a synthesized speech feature.
The almost-finished machine. In use, voters can carry out the voting processrnusing the touch screen, a “puff-sip” device, or by following audiornprompts along with a keypad. AutoMark says the system should be in usernby more than 30,000 precincts by November’s elections, and sales willrnexceed $100 million this year.
Another new maker of e-voting systems is Avante InternationalrnTechnology, which produces a range of systems under the Vote-Trakkerrnbrand. Shown here is the Vote-Trakker EVC308-SPR-FF, a full-face systemrnwith a 30-inch touch screen that will display candidate names in atrnleast 14-point font, as laid out by Federal Election Commissionrnrequirements. It also has a pop-up screen.
Avante’s system in use for early voting in the general election inrnSacramento County, Calif., over 11 days in 2002. The touch-screen devicernis intended to aid people with impairments that may prevent them fromrncasting a ballot otherwise.
The Vote-Trakker prints out a paper record of the ballot image once thernindividual has completed their choices. The record can act as arnverification that the vote has been tallied, Avante says.