Experience Over Change

Finally, I’m back with a bunch of comments and posts to catch up on. The great news, in another post, is that we’ve added to our staff which will off load administriva and allow me to spend more time on development and keeping you informed here of our progress.

I kick off a series of posts over the next couple of days with a comment this evening about another great post I read recently, which I encourage you to look at as well. I don’t know much about the source known as DipDive — a group that does a fair job of not letting you know exactly who they are, but its not hard to guess. Their (or his) involvement in political commentary by mashing it with hip entertainment is compelling and their audience also obvious. And, regardless of your political stripes, that last link is as entertaining and perhaps enlightening as this one may be for some, inspiring.

But I digress. This post is NOT about Senator Barack Obama (or any of the candidates.) Although I note that I realized tonight that I’ve been under a rock, because his campaign really is becoming a movement… approaching "religious" in proportion. Actually, this post is about making people count in the process of democracy. And this is about the role we, the OSDV Foundation, have to play in that effort.

So let’s return to the madness that was the Precinct 4001 Caucus in San Antonio. DipDive’s posting is an important commentary and recount of the process of a voter caucus. In this case, it was a critical component of the (in)famous Texas Two-step electoral process. Anyway, sobering would be a fair adjective for my feeling after reading his recount of what happened. Have a look and I think you’ll agree.

Here’s the main thing: The good folks of Precinct 4001 are but a sample of the good citizens of this nation, all with good intentions, all who want and need to be counted… and all who need to trust the means by which they register their choices in an increasingly digital democracy.

The items I’ve referenced in this post paint a mosaic of Democracy powered by the new media, the Internet, and a digital society. We will see more of this as we approach the corner turning to the general election. This suggests to me that the impact of information technology will continue to be pervasive in the process of democracy. Unfortunately, it — information technology — abruptly derails at the point of polling, where Americans cast their vote.

Fixing that is inordinately difficult, but at the risk of invoking the words of one of the candidates, we need to believe that yes, we can.

Nothing we’re working on today has any chance of effecting how America votes this November. For that, perhaps we will all hold the remote that evening, white knuckled and watch the returns, hoping there is no other shoe to drop on the integrity of the outcome. But then again, we know there will be problems.

And while the videos play on, and the commercials war (yes, there will be mud), the OSDV Foundation will continue to labor for the public benefit, laying the ground work for the designs, specifications, and blue prints for new machinery that we all will be able to see, touch, and try… technology we can truly trust. Then, and only then will the prospect be there for the good citizens of this country to truly trust that they have been counted.

Won’t you please join us in this effort to reinvent how digital voting technology works?


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