California Proposition 8: Field Poll Survey Results

Google AdSense

The Field Poll just published their findings on California Proposition 8. This proposition is probably the most well known and popular on the ballot this year. Field Poll Release #2292 summaries their findings as:

In its final pre-election survey, The Field Poll shows the No-side continuing to prevail over the Yes-side but by a narrower margin  than previously.  The poll, completed one week before the election, shows 49% of likely voters voting No, 44% on the Yes side and 7 undecided.

— Field Poll #2292, October 31, 2008

Continue reading

San Diego Voter Registration By Party Changes

Google AdSense

San Diego County is one of the top republican counties in California. However, the county is seemingly shifting more democratic and more independent and away from the republican party. The San Diego Union Tribune reports that the allocation of voters changing:

The ranks of Democrats countywide have swelled by nearly 104,000 registered voters since December, all but eliminating the 24-year advantage held by Republicans.

— Craig Gustafson, San Diego Union Tribune [1]

Continue reading

Sorting items using ASP.NET AJAX Toolkit ReorderList control

A common issue that I find myself falling into is how to sort things such as categories. I could sort them alphabetically or by child record counts, but most often my system owners (who I’m developing my web applications for) want to be able to reorder the categories to match either the process flow or priorities.

This can easily be done by adding a new field to the database record to store the sort order precedence and a new textbox on the web form to edit/add new category records. However, editing one category at a time in a web form leads to a bit of confusion since it’s easy to forget whether the category should be #3 or #4. They want something more visual. And that’s where the AJAX Toolkit ReorderList control comes in.

Continue reading

The Failure of Electronic Voting Systems

Rob Conery (of SubSonic and Microsoft MVC projects) wrote a very interesting article a few weeks ago titled, “Hacking Your Vote“. He summarizes the various electronic voting systems, their bugs, and their designs.

As a software engineer, I find it utterly amazing that a $50 million dollar Diebold system was designed using a Microsoft Access database — an unsecured Microsoft database. Rob also shows some screenshots of Diebold’s database on his blog entry.

Continue reading

Income Distribution and Poverty in the United States

I found this report very interesting since I really wasn’t too aware of the organization or findings. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released a study titled “Growing Unequal? Income Distribution and Poverty in OECD Countries.”

Why is the gap between rich and poor growing?
In most countries the gap is growing because rich households have done significantly better than middle-class and poor households. Changes in the structure of the population and in the labour market over the past 20 years have contributed greatly to this rise in inequality.

— Key Findings of Growing Unequal

After reading through the country summary (available in PDF format, see links at bottom of article), I was really surprised at the findings. Nearly everyone considers the United States one of the wealthiest and least poor modern countries. However, only Mexico and Turkey has a greater gap in inequality and higher poverty rates (within the OECD countries).

Continue reading