How To Track Official Election Results On Ethereum And EOS

How To Track Official Election Results On Ethereum And EOS

For the first time ever, the official U.S. Presidential election results will be posted on the ethereum and EOS blockchains by the Associated Press.
Beyond just posting the results, though, the AP is using the blockchains behind the scenes in its own application programming interface (API), meaning anyone tapping into the official AP results can verify the accuracy using the blockchain data.
As Facebook, Twitter and others have taken advanced steps to fight off false claims about results earlier in the day that might influence later voters, using the unalterable blockchain to time-stamp the results could pave the way for how future elections are handled.
“AP is the gold standard in counting the vote and declaring election winners,” said Dwayne Desaulniers, AP director of data licensing, in a statement. The AP has been calling U.S. elections since 1848.
On the surface, the API is just like any other software interface, where a company gives access to its data to either a paying customer, or the general public.
First, software developers at various news and research sites build their own mobile app for viewing results, or identify their existing app as a repository for the data. Then, during the election, the app polls the API at regular intervals, looking for information such as race results on a state and national level, including vote counts, delegate counts and whether or not a race has been called.
Additionally, the Associated Press voting data will be posted to Everipedia, a blockchain-based competitor to Wikipedia that uses software called an “oracle” to ensure the data that comes from outside the blockchain is accurate. Everipedia built its oracle using Chainlink, open-source software that uses the $4 billion link cryptocurrency as part of its consensus-building process.
Once the data is verified as authentic, it will be posted to the public ethereum and EOS blockchains, which in addition to tracking their native cryptocurrencies (ether and EOS, respectively), can be used to track any other data in exchange for a tiny fee, called “gas.” Unlike bitcoin, which is largely limited to tracking the cryptocurrency, ethereum and EOS have entire computer languages that can be used to write applications that run like a website, but without centralized servers.
“Making this powerful technology more accessible is key to realizing its full potential,” said Daniel Kochis, head of business development at Chainlink, in a statement. “And publishing the AP’s electoral race calls onto the blockchain for the first time is a big milestone in that journey.”
While blockchain technology has been used to track actual votes of smaller elections, and has proved somewhat promising, the AP’s use to track the results is the largest scale use of the technology in elections to date.
Of course, while using blockchain to prove the AP election race calls are official is a potential solution to fraudulent claims designed to influence uncast votes, the data is only as strong as the voting process itself.
Other more elaborate blockchain solutions in the works, including Voatz, Votem and Agora Vote, purport to solve the problems of proving one’s identity remotely (a possible boon to voting during a pandemic) and providing proof that one’s vote was accurately counted. Both of which could still end up being problems that remain to be solved in this year’s election.
Michael del Castillo
I report on how blockchain and cryptocurrencies are being adopted by enterprises and the broader business community. My coverage includes the use of cryptocurrencies and
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I report on how blockchain and cryptocurrencies are being adopted by enterprises and the broader business community. My coverage includes the use of cryptocurrencies and extends to non-cryptocurrency applications of blockchain in finance, supply chain management, digital identity and a number of other use cases. Previously, I was a staff reporter at blockchain news site, CoinDesk, where I covered the increasing willingness of enterprises to explore how blockchain could make their work more efficient and in some cases, unnecessary. I have been covering blockchain since 2011, been published in the New Yorker, and been nationally syndicated by American City Business Journals. My work has been published in Blockchain in Financial Markets and Beyond by Risk Books and I am regularly cited in industry research reports. Since 2009 I’ve run Literary Manhattan, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization dedicated to showing Manhattan’s rich literary heritage.

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