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Web Traffic, Glitches Slow Obamacare Launch

Public health office staff members in Champaign, Illinois, work with people trying to sign up for health care coverage through the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, October 1, 2013.
Blank boxes where security questions are supposed to appear. Pleas to ‘be patient.’ Error messages galore. Notices that ‘the system is busy right now.’ Web pages timing out before they load. Garbled lines of text riddled with stray question marks.

Technology experts and government officials were stumped about the reasons for the computer glitches plaguing the Obama administration's launch of new health insurance exchanges under the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

They variously blamed an unexpected deluge of customers and outright errors that information technology (IT) teams labored throughout the day to fix.