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Subject: RE: [election-services] Fwd: EVT/WOTE '09: Call for Voting System Demonstration Proposals


Just to pick up on your last point, I have attended some WOTE conferences here in Europe and as you say they are not generally interested in simply "you should use EML".  Which is a shame because getting the fundamental message across of the need for standardization at the data and interface levels is in my opinion the one that we need to keep flogging if e-voting is to take-off successfully and be adopted universally. 

Good luck with the conference.


-----Original Message-----
From: joehall@gmail.com [mailto:joehall@gmail.com] On Behalf Of Joseph Lorenzo Hall
Sent: 17 June 2009 19:27
To: David RR Webber (XML)
Cc: John Borras; eml
Subject: Re: [election-services] Fwd: EVT/WOTE '09: Call for Voting System Demonstration Proposals

On Wed, Jun 17, 2009 at 2:11 PM, David RR Webber (XML)<david@drrw.info> wrote:
> I hate to dampen the enthusiasm here - but this is WOTE we're discussing -
> academia.

Well, as a member of the academy, I should note that it's EVT/WOTE...
which means it's especially academic since we've combined the two
leading e-voting research workshops into one.

> I believe what they are envisioning to look at is the type of systems that
> the PhD students entered in to the 2008 Portland, OR college competition for
> voting solutions.... that the folks from Maryland won.

You are mistaken.  Anything that people would like the leading
e-voting researchers to "kick the tires" on is a candidate for
demonstration.  You're obviously welcome *not* to submit.

> In discussions with these folks they have no idea why you need EML XML -
> they just look at that as an annoyance that detracts from their wonderful
> research, mathematics and clever encryption systems.  While I view all that
> as terrible design flaws that impede transparency and open elections.   How
> we cross that bridge is a whole another challenge?

I don't understand this criticism; it seems heavily off-the-cuff and
not representative of "these folks".  The academic criticisms of  EML
have been very narrow and application specific (for example, "I need a
data structure that is very lightweight, not something like EML.").

> The good news is that Montreal is a really nice place to visit then - no
> surprise that its a summer destination for academia - OK - maybe I should
> not be so cynical - hopefully someone else has a more positive spin here!?

The workshop is at the mercy, in terms of location, of it's co-located
venue, USENIX Security... which is held in North America once per year
and is one of the most important places for computer security
scholarship (Comp. Sec. doesn't do journals much anymore).

As one of the organizers of this event, I can speak to the audience
and to whether or not you want to have a demo in our demo session.  If
the goal is to simply have EML represented, that's probably not
useful.  If a member of our TC has a new tech. that they'd like
usability researchers, security researchers, lawyers, election
officials and such from the US and Europe (WOTE has traditionally been
heavily European) to see, play with and get feedback on, then by all
means.  This is essentially an opportunity to get your new ideas in
front of the best of the best.

best, Joe

Joseph Lorenzo Hall
ACCURATE Postdoctoral Research Associate
UC Berkeley School of Information
Princeton Center for Information Technology Policy

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