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Strategies & Market Trends : Voting Machine Companies

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To: NotNeiderhoffer who wrote (30)11/17/2000 9:48:16 AM
From: levy  Read Replies (1) of 69
 
NotN since everyone has been jerking around I
I am trying to provide straight answers for people...I believe Gore has won it.
Message 14828865

Doyouknowfromwhatstatetheterm"dryhump"camefrom?

....here is the article about their voting machines from WSJ...I imagine this may be why their stock is going up right now.

ELECTION 2000

A Brazilian Firm Sees Dollar Signs
Amid America's Electoral Chaos

By JONATHAN KARP
Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- The world may see farce in America's
presidential impasse, but the company that brought computerized voting to
the inner recesses of Brazil's Amazon sees historic opportunity. And it is
rushing to cash in.

When Joao Abud Jr. awoke Wednesday in Sao Paulo to news of political
confusion in the U.S., dollar signs danced on his television screen. "We
have the solution," says the marketing and sales director for Procomp
Industria Eletronica, which developed cheap, simple and secure electronic
voting machines used by about 100 million Brazilians in October local
elections. "My thoughts were commercial: How can I sell this terminal to
the U.S. authorities?"

Two days later, Mr. Abud hurriedly was printing promotional material in
English about his product, called the UE2000. Diebold Inc., which
bought Procomp last year, had just called to say, "Take the first plane to
Miami with the voting terminal in your hands!" Monday, Mr. Abud will
show off the prized machine smack in the eye of America's political
hurricane.

For Diebold, based in North Canton, Ohio, the $225 million purchase of
Procomp gave the U.S.'s biggest automated-teller-machine provider
control of Brazil's ATM market leader. But elections soon offered a new
strategic outlet: Procomp's $106 million contract to supply 186,000 voting
machines in Brazil was the largest order in Diebold's history.

Then came Florida. "There's been a tremendous increase in interest and
contacts asking us to talk about this technology," says Michael Hillock,
Diebold's senior vice president for international sales. "We're looking at
where we think we could move this product."

Perhaps more remarkable is how Brazil, which restored democracy in
1985 after two decades of military rule, quickly has become a model for
electoral probity. President Fernando Henrique Cardoso took a dig at the
U.S. on Saturday, saying that "the example of the most powerful neighbor
shows that not even there were they able to count the votes as quickly as
here."

There have been bumps along the way. After Brazil's dictatorship ended,
the first popularly elected president won through dirty tricks and resigned
on the eve of impeachment for alleged corruption. Even in October's polls,
many ballots hosted candidates with dubious pasts. The weekly magazine
Veja reported that nearly 10% of those running for mayor and city
councilor in the nine largest state capitals were under investigation for
crimes ranging from tax evasion to murder.

But thanks largely to Procomp's electronic voting machines, no one is
questioning the integrity of the vote count. Brazil began introducing
electronic voting in 1996, but this year was the first fully automated
nationwide election. The dimensions are staggering: With an area bigger
than the continental U.S., many of the 326,000 polling stations in regions
lacking reliable electricity and one-fifth of the voters illiterate, Brazil poses
the greatest challenge to a fair election of any country outside of India.

Procomp used technology to simplify the process, just as it had adapted its
traditional products to the needs of Brazil's banking market. Procomp's
electronic ballot box, which is the size of a toaster-oven and weighs 17
pounds, has a numeric keypad and a small liquid-crystal display monitor.
Voters tap in the designated number of their preferred candidate,
producing the candidate's digitalized photograph on the screen. Then they
press a green button to confirm the vote or an orange button to correct
their vote. A white button lets them abstain. (Voting is required by
Brazilian law.)

People can't vote twice because their registration numbers are recorded
electronically, just as an ATM might prevent a customer from withdrawing
too much money in a single day. It is almost impossible to tamper with the
results, which are stored on an encrypted floppy disk. Even Procomp
doesn't have access to the encryption code.

The terminal operates on a Pentium-equivalent microprocessor, but
Procomp stripped down the peripherals to reduce cost and energy
consumption. It can run for at least 12 hours on a rechargeable battery --
a crucial consideration for polling outposts in the Amazon.

Procomp received a rousing reception on election night in Brasilia, where
the U.S. Embassy borrowed four terminals for a simulated presidential
election. Noting that foreign diplomats "had no difficulty using them," a
local newspaper published a photograph of Ambassador Anthony
Harrington in front of the voting machine, arms extended with two thumbs
up.

For the record, Gore won the instantly tabulated mock vote: 139-53.
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