The eSlate is an electronic voting system, also known as a Direct Record Electronic (DRE) voting system. The eSlate is manufactured, marketed and supported by Hart InterCivic of Austin, Texas.
eSlate has won acclaim for its ease of use, accessibility to disabled voters and fast, efficient ballot tabulation. Its unique Rotary Optical Encode technology ensures voters can confidently and accurately register their votes.
The eSlate is about the size of a legal pad, about one inch thick, and weighs just 5.2 pounds. The voter uses a rotary wheel to move through the ballot and select his or her vote.
Using the wheel, you, the voter, select a language -- English, Spanish, or Vietnamese. Next, you are asked to enter the four-digit code you will receive upon check-in at the voting site. The code tells the system which contests to present for your precinct; the code does NOT identify you in any way and cannot be linked to your vote.
The ballot then appears on the color screen, and you use the SELECT wheel to move a blue highlight bar through the ballot. Once you move the highlight bar onto your desired choice, simply press the large button marked ENTER, and the selection is marked. The box beside that choice is marked in red and your selection becomes bold while all the other choices fade into the background, so you have a strong visual signal of your vote.
If you make a mistake or change your mind, all you have to do is to change the selection -- the system won't let you cast too many votes in a race. After you have voted in the last contest on the ballot, a BALLOT SUMMARY screen will appear listing all the choices you have made and lets you know if you missed voting in any race. From this screen, you can make corrections, as needed, to be sure your votes are as you want them to be. When you finish reviewing your ballot, press the CAST BALLOT button to put your ballot into the electronic ballot box.
That's all there is to it. Voters do not have to know anything about computers. The eSlate system is really more of an appliance -- a state-of-the-art voting appliance that is sure to serve Fort Bend County voters well for many years to come.
eSlate is a trademark of Hart InterCivic, Inc.
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