A new way to vote: Accessible, affordable, available

Charles A. Gaston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Florida election fiasco of 2000 has spawned thousands of articles on what is wrong with our voting systems, hundreds of ideas on how to fix the problems, and one radically different voting system that is arguably more secure and less expensive than any other system in existence. The system described here is primarily software, and runs on ordinary PCs as old, small and slow as a 20 MHz 386 with 4 Mb of memory. Such computers are free. Security is obtained not by secrecy, but by openness; everything is public knowledge except how any individual votes. Fully functional software is downloadable from the web. Accessibility is trivial for anyone who can read a computer screen and use a standard computer keyboard (perhaps with mouth stick or head stick). For those with even less mobility, only two keys are absolutely essential (if not doing any write-in votes); simple mechanical or electronic keyboard interfaces could be designed to operate those keys. One totally blind person and two legally blind people have voted successfully with this system. They refer to a ballot in another form (Braille, voice tape, or large print) and request tones from the computer telling them current page number, line number, and whether or not that candidate is selected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInformation Technology and Disabilities
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Information Systems and Management


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