The Changes in the Voting Process

November 6, 2012

If you go out and vote today, you will see that the voting process and devices have changed a lot over the past couple of elections. In the aftermath of the Florida debacle in 2000, there has been an emphasis on replacing the “old” voting equipment (i.e. punch card ballots) with more technologically advanced voting methods – such as touch screen devices. As products and services are becoming more and more digital, the voting process has changed with this advancement in design and technology.

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The excerpt below is from Fast Company’s article “If 2012 Comes To A Recount, Will We Have Another Florida?”

It was the 2000 Florida recount, the worst nightmare for Democrats and Republicans alike. Since that ever-controversial election, Caltech and MIT have teamed up in a joint research initiative called the Voting Technology Project (VTP). The goal is to bring cross-discipline researchers to analyze and scrutinize the voting process.

“Our research indicates that the human factor is probably the biggest source of problems in elections,” VTP co-director Michael Alvarez explains. “

Between 2000 and 2008, voting in the U.S. became far more reliable, thanks largely to new voting machines as well as statewide computerized voting registration. Such measures produced a 50% drop in lost votes from 2000 to 2008.

The Voting Technology Project shows how extensive design research and strategy can lead to a better overall system design. It will be interesting to see how future elections continue to change with the advancements in the design industry. You can read more on this story here.

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