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Internet

Get online on election night

If you want to know who's winning on election night, you can wade through TV commentary hoping that they'll get to the results you want. Then there's the Net.

If you want to know who's winning on election night, you can tune in to your favorite television network and wade through commentary hoping that they'll get to the results you want.

Then there's the Internet.

Election officials are increasingly turning to the online world to get results out quickly and efficiently to satisfy voters, journalists, and swamped registrar officials in one fell swoop.

California became the latest jurisdiction to boost its ability to post live election results today when Secretary of State Bill Jones unveiled its new Web site. The site will post live results for state races, as well as for the presidential election.

When the state posted elections results in 1994 through an experimental public and private partnership, it was the first to do so, said Alfie Charles, a spokesman for the secretary of state's office. But even though results were limited, it was very popular.

"Our site enables everybody to get election results on demand every five minutes," Charles said.

Not only do voters appreciate the immediate results, but so do reporters. "By pointing people to the Internet, it just saves a tremendous amount of staff time," Charles said.