Political Connections

Perhaps you’ve heard of electoral-vote.com. Over the past few months, the site’s author has been collecting data from various polls and trying to predict which candidate is likely to carry each state. Each state’s support is classified as strong, weak, or barely there, or a straight tie, making it a more useful gauge than a simple red/blue map.

Yesterday’s data showed a strong win for Kerry, 298 electoral votes to 231. This morning it shows a virtual tie: 262 for Kerry, 261 for Bush.

This morning the “votemaster” also writes about dealing with a simultaneous denial-of-service attack and Slashdotting (or “flash crowd” as he prefers to call it), and he talked about his previous Slashdotting experience… with a rebuttal to claims that Linux was stolen from Minix.

Yes, the “votemaster” is none other than Andrew Tanenbaum, author of the MINIX operating system, one-time teacher of Linus Torvalds, and an interviewee for Samizdat, the Microsoft-funded study that attempted to prove that Linux couldn’t possibly have been developed honestly. Tanenbaum was disturbed by the leading questions, and incensed when his responses were taken out of context and used to support a position he categorically refuted. He and others posted rebuttals before the book even saw print, and by the time it was actually published, it was essentially a nonissue.

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