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RE: Another GEMS question

> In response to the question below, we suggested to Gail that she:
> Gail needs to backup her General Election Database, rename it,
> then load it back into GEMS.

It is worth noting to support people in general that dumping and reloading
will only fix very specific problems having to do with beta-release GEMS or
upgrade bugs.  In general, dumping and loading will not affect your

I don't want people getting into the standard operating procedure of dumping
and loading databases in an attempt to fix unknown problems;  this will not
in general fix anything.

> I have set up the database and successfully generated a ballot.
> I didn't like the way the headers were working, so I made some
> changes and checked "force layout" and then generated ballots
> again.  It looks like it is going through the generate ballot
> process but then I get an error message that says "couldn't lay
> out all ballots."

Right.  Some header options can make it impossible for GEMS to lay out the
ballots.  The trick is to choose header options which will lay out the
ballot as expected.  The support group should be able to help her with that
given her database.

> Is it true with a jurisdiction wide question that only one ballot
> card will be created?  So all 40 districts receive say "Card 1"?

Yes, this is true.

> Is there a way to make it create 40 different cards?

This is a bit of a loaded question.  GEMS generates the fewest number of
postscript files needed to correctly count an election.  Gail could opt to
print precinct ids on her ballots, but that would generate artwork for every
precinct (ie, many more than 40 files).

If I read between the lines correctly, she wants to have a header on each of
the 40 "cards" that has the district name just for identification purposes.
She can do this by creating 40 races with no candidates and assigning them
to the appropriate district.

All things being equal, I would suggest for simplicity of administration
using the one card as generated.  That way you don't have to figure out what
cards go where or how many of each to print, etc etc.  In other words, the
race contortions to get more cards are because GEMS is trying to "do the
right thing" for this election -- which is one card.