I'm voting tomorrow, and hope you will too.
I will line up and use a Diebold voting machine, like everyone else in Georgia, and hope that the vote count is accurate. But that's all it will be, a hope. As last week's HBO special revealed the machines and (more important) the system is both closed-source and easy to hack.
With the present Diebold system, you can't prove an election was stolen. You also can't prove one wasn't, which is very, very dangerous.
But would open source be any better?
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say the answer is no.
Whether the source of a program is open or closed does not make it transparent. Transparency is what we need here. A transparent computerized voting system would offer voters' receipts, would maintain copies, and would read them against vote totals. Its operation could be checked by both sides.
We have a system that works in this way, the credit card transaction system, and it's almost all closed source. But it is also well-documented. It's audited. And everyone involved has an incentive to protect its accuracy.
The irony is that mechanical systems work fine. Over 30 years ago, in high school, I used such a system to cast my first vote. Four huge, clunky behemoths were wheeled into a hallway. Pressing a lever in the front activated a counter in the back, a simple clicker. At the end of the vote the backs were opened, and the results tabulated.
No one complained. Even though I won.[poll id=10]