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Philippines' E-Balloting Machines Having Problems

National Vote Next Week Won't Be Postponed, However

1 min read
Philippines' E-Balloting Machines Having Problems

There are news reports this morning that some of the electronic balloting machines scheduled to be used in the Philippines' elections on May 10th are having "technical issues."

According to this story in the Philippine Star, "... some of the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines to be used by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) failed test runs in some parts of the country, prompting a stop to the testing and a recall of the machines."

The story goes on to say, "During the testing, the machines were able to count the votes cast for the candidates in the first row but it did not read the votes in the second row presumably because of the space between the two rows."

Smartmatic and its Filipino partner Total Information Management Corp. (TIM) which provided the machines said that they would be replacing the four-gigabyte compact flash memory cards installed in all the PCOS machines assigned to each of the 76,000 polling precincts.

There have been worries for the past year about whether there had been enough prior testing of the machines, while others worried over the possibility of voter fraud. Comelec has downplayed those issues, and has assured that fair elections can be held.

A Reuters story says that the government had initially planned to postpone the election for two weeks, but that the election would now go on as scheduled. Opposition parties had strongly opposed any delay.

Some 50 million Filipinos are eligible to vote for president, vice president and other officials to fill nearly 18,000 national and local posts.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
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A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar
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You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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