The US isn't the only country with e-voting problems. In Scotland, elections last week were seriously marred by spoiled paper ballots, which led to technical problems with electronic counting systems that delayed election results, Computerworld reports.
The supplier, DRS, told Computerworld UK that the problems were not about being able to read the votes - the scanners worked without problems - but with consolidating the votes and database fragmentation.
A spokesperson said, "The DRS e-counting systems encountered significant fragmentation (up to 99%) of a number of the database indexes, which caused the complex queries required to produce final results and some status summary reports to time out.
"Whilst investigations are still under way to understand the precise reason for the index fragmentation, at this early stage it remains likely that the number of rejected ballots was the major contributory factor."
The level of rejected ballot papers totalled nearly 142,000 rejected papers, according to the BBC, almost 7% of the votes cast. The company's explanations verged on technobabble.
The DRS spokesperson said, "The database had been tuned for the expected levels of workflow which had not included the unforeseeably high level of ballots that ultimately had to be rejected." She added, "DRS is a Microsoft Certified Partner and the e-Counting system was designed around the latest Microsoft SQL 2005 Server technology. Over the past 18 months, DRS has been thoroughly testing the system using a team of ISEB quality engineers. Numerous load tests were conducted to 135 percent of maximum predicted capacity and at no time during these tests was index fragmentation an issue."