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May 10, 2013
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Eleksyon na sa Lunes!

Folks, the 2013 Philippine Senatorial Elections is just two days away (that's May 13), capping off what has been a very eventful last couple of months for the candidates. By now we're pretty sure you already feel bombarded by all the halalan-related news, word wars, and campaigning, all of which could ultimately influence your decision or, in the case of epalitikos, piss you off.

So for now, we'll be taking a break from all the negative election talk to focus on something that we deem is a big positive: tech's role in informing voters and our society's far-better-from-your-lolo's-time (but not perfect) voting process.

We list down all the major changes below...


Note: The images within this article are for illustrative purposes only. We're not endorsing any particular party or supporting any candidate.

 

Online video campaigns

Both the candidates and institutions calling for a fair and successful elections use online videos to get their messages across. We couldn't blame them. After all, YouTube can propel even the most mundane and obscure clips to online superstardomalthough this campaign period didn't have any super-viral material rivaling that of, say, Gangnam Style's reach and success

Old school counterpart: TV and radio ads, which are still heavily used today.

 

PCOS machine

2013 philippine senatorial elections pcos machine
Perhaps the highlight of our era's techie botohan is the PCOS (precint count optical scan) machine. Also used during the 2010 Presidential elections, it's a device that scans and counts our ballots and votes easily and electronically and can significantly ease the burden of teachers and volunteers. When used correctly, these xerox machine-sized wonders will reduce the total "waiting time" alloted for counting and verifying the votes, resulting in a much faster tally. And, it has a quirky side, too (click here for our Q&A with the "PCOS machine").

Old school counterpart: Pen and paper ballots, and hordes of volunteers manually counting votes into the wee hours of the morning.

 

Online precinct finder

The COMELEC has set-up an online precinct finder to make it much easier for voters to know where they are supposed to vote on Election Day and how to get there. Just go to this page, fill out the necessary fields, and, voila!, you know where to go! This one really gets a thumbs-up from us. As we all know, finding your precinct can be a tiring ordeal and, in this pang-Bora weather, a very sweaty one, too.

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2013 philippine senatorial elections online precinct finder
We highly suggest that, after knowing where to vote, play the early bird role to avoid the dreaded pila, something that this online tool can't save you from.

Old school counterpart: Venue postings on regional COMELEC offices, that friendly manong guard who gives directions to your voting precinct.

 

NEXT: Your smartphone, Facebook account, and Google are here to help


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