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UberGeeks (Perl Monks, CVS admins, etc.) please read: project starting.

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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 12:11 PM
Original message
UberGeeks (Perl Monks, CVS admins, etc.) please read: project starting.
It's time to get things started on an OpenSource project for the cause.

Please PM me (use DU or email at bri at abrij dot org) if you are interested in helping and have any of the below. Especially needed right now is #1 on the list.


  1. Experience in setup and maintainance of projects on an opensource development server (SourceForge, Savannah, etc.)
  2. Perl at moderate to advanced skill levels.
  3. Knowlege or special interest in the internal workings of OpenSource OCR software like gocr.
  4. Knowlege or special interest in the internal workings of OpenSource format extraction tools like pdftotext, word2x, etc.
  5. Knowlege or special interest in the internal workings of web spidering packages like wget, curl, etc.
  6. Any other skills you think might help in a support role, e.g. distribution packaging, project promo and website, expert knowlege.


So far I've been working with USCountVotes and giving them some advice about their database design. To wit, I've helped them anticipate several of the ickier "gotchas" that a database must address to deal with the slipshod nature of election return data. I've started writing preliminary code for parsing -- those for ASCII versions of two diebold reporting formats are near completion. Also I've started organizing a list of the various formats we need to deal with here:

http://abrij.org/~bri/my2c/boefmts.html

This software project will be working very closely with USCountVotes and will primarily be focused on helping them automate data aquisition on a large scale. The project will be run/administered independently though, as it keeps it out of their hair and has a few parrallel secondary objectives, like making the software available to BOEs to encourage them to produce faster and more thorough returns, and for use by campaigns trying to judge the effectiveness of their GOTV drives.

USCountVotes does have an email list, and if you want to join up there you can/should too. This project will likely have a separate mailing list, as the USCountVotes one will be busy with posts for immediately needed data and overall database design, while this project will be focusing explicitly on data extraction/mining.

:kick me:
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Kelvin Mace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 12:15 PM
Response to Original message
1. I can tell you that the NC Committee
I serve on is considering an OS solution, possibly through the UNC system with state funding.

This might be a way to get funding if you get the OSF backing the effort.

David Allen
www.thoughtcrimes.org

The taste of Republican butt does not improve with age.

"The NeoCons can't be bargained with. They can't be reasoned with. They do not feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And they absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.
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danostuporstar Donating Member (147 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 12:30 PM
Response to Original message
2. Kick and raises hand
for having experience in categories 1 and 4, but my perl ain't much. so mostly just a kick.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 12:59 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Actually someone who won't get too involved...
...in the guts of a project makes the best administrator for the CVS resources, because they can concentrate on keeping things clean and ordered without getting wrapped up in the daily details.

I'll send a PM in a day or two after I get the initial list of people together.

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KingoftheJungle Donating Member (355 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
4. Damn you, I was going to spearhead this idea on Slashdot
well, I may not be any programmer, but if you need any help I will assist in any way I can.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:50 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. You still can.

I'm more looking to do the programming than the publicity/promotion, and we could use a promotions person.

We should hit freshmeat before /. though, and for that we need to have a start on some source code, which I have. I'd kind of like to get that into a respectable CVS repository/development site first, for which I'll need an administrator.


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area51 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 02:39 PM
Response to Original message
5. kick
Hmmm.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 06:58 PM
Response to Original message
7. kick for the evening crowd n/t
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 09:38 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. Kick for the night owls.

I'll probably kick this for one more day and then start getting back to people with a plan of action. Thanks for the responses so far.

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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 10:58 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. Kick for the brown-baggers. n/t
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dqueue Donating Member (226 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:17 PM
Response to Original message
8. hmm
i have some sys/net admin experience. limited coding. webserver, firewall, email admin. *bsd flavors, mostly. i'm happy to help out.
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ivorysteve Donating Member (37 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 10:26 PM
Response to Original message
10. Kick. I'll sign up, would love to help if I can n/t
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ivorysteve Donating Member (37 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:16 AM
Response to Original message
12. Info on the Australian open source system ...
... is here, if you want a working example. If it's at all helpful.

http://www.elections.act.gov.au/Elecvote.html

Want a java/swing front end? I could help with that.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:42 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Not quite what we're doing.
That's more along the lines of these people here:

http://www.openvotingconsortium.org /

(and BTW, this link is also interesting on that front: http://open-vote.org / )

What we are doing is going out to BOE websites, gathering data, chewing
it up, and regurgitating it in a form that can be inserted into USCountVotes's national database of election returns.

As far as Java frontends, we aren't going to have a frontend, and USCounVotes is already pretty far along with a PHP implementation for their interface for volunteer/staff data collectors. Got any other tricks?



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ivorysteve Donating Member (37 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:42 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. Thanks for the URLs

Yea, that's what I thought you were starting. Also, Electronic Frontier Foundation http://www.eff.org/Activism/E-voting / has an interesting page.

Sorry, I'm out of tricks :-)
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 05:55 PM
Response to Original message
15. last kick

I'll be mailing out to volunteers in a few hours.
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