Well, I just cast my vote in the 2004 Presidential Election, using one of the brand-new electronic voting machines. Living in a small suburban town means that my polling place was less than a half-mile up the road, and I only had to wait behind two other people.
As for the voting machines, themselves, these ones were burgundy and black, with a red curtain. I was expecting a touch screen, or something similar, and when I stepped through the curtain, was surprised to find a big paper ballot in front of me with the candidates names on them just like the mechanical lever machines.
Green LED “Xs” shine through the translucent paper. You can feel a membrane button through the drawing of the button on the paper, and when you depress it, a green “X” moves over from the office title column to the block with the chosen candidate’s name.
Below the paper ballot, on the right, is a glowing red “CAST VOTE” button; when you press that, an electronic trill signifies that your vote was recorded (hopefully).
No “I voted today” sticker for me, though. You’d think that all of the polling locations would have them to give out. Oh well…
BTW, to make things easier on yourself, do not forget to bring some form of identification. First-time voters who registered by mail after December 9, 2003, must show identification according to the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). Proof of identification varies from state to state. Check your state rules to see what qualifies as identification or to see if they have any additional requirements regarding identification to vote.
[Update:] The Ocean County Clerk’s Office posted a photo gallery of the new voting machines.
[Update 2:] Chuck invites others to blog first person narratives about their voting experiences. Stop by his page and add to the list of accounts. (via LiL)