• Comelec: US-based firm to review source code

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    The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has again tapped SLI Global Solutions, a company based in the United States, to conduct a review and certification of the source code of the automated election system (AES) that will be used in the May 2016 national and local elections.

    “The commission en banc approved the recommendation of the Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC). They have recommended the choice of Systems Lab Inc. (SLI), which will be conducting the source code review abroad. That will be the international certification entity,” Comelec Commissioner Christian Robert Lim said recently.

    SLI Global was chosen from among four companies recommended by the TEC and the Comelec Advisory Council (CAC).

    It also reviewed and certified the source code of the AES during the 2010 and 2013 elections.

    Lim said the source code review will start once they have chosen their preferred voting machines for the May 2016 polls, and is expected to last for five months.

    Smartmatic last July 30 was awarded P1.7 billion for lease of 23,000 units of Optical Mark Readers (OMRs).

    Smartmatic, however, was slapped with electoral-sabotage charges on the same day for allegedly changing the source code of the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines hours after the May 2013 polls closed.

    The Comelec still has pending refurbishment bids for the existing 81,896 PCOS machines, and for lease of the remaining 70,977 new OMR units.

    “In computing, [the]source code is any collection of computer instructions [possibly with comments]written using some human-readable computer language, usually as text.

    “The source code of a program is specially designed to facilitate the work of computer programmers, who specify the actions to be performed by a computer mostly by writing source code.

    “[It] is often transformed by a compiler program into low-level machine code understood by the computer. The machine code might then be stored for execution at a later time. Alternatively, an interpreter can be used to analyze and perform the outcomes of the source code program directly on the fly.”

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