Mr. Miller You say “How exactly we get there is the practical challenge.”
Wayne Lambright
11

Hi Wayne-
When I wrote “How exactly we get there is the practical challenge” what I was (and am) referring to has nothing to do with technical capabilities or feasibility. There are plenty of Blockchain-related projects out there today trying to achieve the technical solution, and it is to a good extent do-able (at least a ballot ledger). For instance, look up “FollowMyVote” …this is precisely the kind of project you could get behind. For intellectual honesty, however, you would also want to consider an article about this technology and its practical application available on FreeAndFair.us (a new OSS election tech start-up by a cadre of some of the best computer scientists around)… never mind the blog post from 2014 on our site I mentioned earlier. But here is the point on practicality (discussed in our blog post): notwithstanding the ability to produce the technology, gaining its adoption is the primary (and practical) obstacle. Regardless of your views about whether the U.S. electoral system has issues (it does), or whether its as some are alleging “rigged” …the folks (nearly everyone I’ve met in 9-years of touring the nation’s polling places) in the trenches on the frontlines of democracy including the fox holes of polling places, all want to do the right thing to ensure their fiduciary duty to deliver elections that meet the VAST mandate (Verifiable, Accurate, Secure, and Transparent (in process)). A key element of that is custodianship of ballots. And one thing they absolutely are unwilling to do is surrender that custodianship to a distributed network of black boxes under stewardship of individuals they might not have any “em personam” connection with in the administration of that election. So, practically speaking there is a track full of hurdles to cross to actually implement this kind of voting technology (no matter how badly some of us want it and believe it would reinvent how America votes for the better). In the meantime, we believe a pathway to bring America forward into the digital age is simply to start by drastically improving the digital means of casting and counting and related user experience in place today, without requiring any legislative act to do so. The first step is a code base of public ownership. From that foothold, further advances can and will come… many that may require legislative innovation. And those initiatives are more likely to move forward as trust has been established in the deployment of new publicly owned technology that meets or exceeds the VAST mandate. But in order for “code to cause change,” we have to start somewhere. Starting with the blockchain will do nothing but demonstrate clever and complicated technical means with mathematics and black boxes to attempt to instill notions of ease, convenience, and transparency. Must we pursue that research, those experiments, and such technology? Absolutely! And for that you should look into FollowMyVote. And while you’re following innovations, I’d encourage you to at least follow the TrustTheVote Project too, because we’re determined to inject innovation at an acceptable level that will make way for more change in the future. For your endeavors, sincerely, best of luck!

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.