One of the proposals on the Michigan ballot proposes to do away with gerrymandering and base districts on "science".
Mrs ERJ and I debated this at length and decided to vote against the proposal.
Our reasoning is that the current evolution of districting serves two useful purposes.
By creating "safe" districts, the process creates firewalls against voter fraud. This is also a powerful reason for the electoral college. Were the presidential election to be based on the popular vote, the 13 million dead voters in Chicago would nullify the 64 million votes cast for the other candidate. With the electoral college, Chicago could cast 23 million or 113 million fraudulent votes and it only impacts the electoral votes cast by the state of Illinois.
The other thing that "safe" districts does is to armor against the tyranny of the majority. Safe districts makes the legislature look more like the population than if the districts were homogenized. Imagine a state that was 49.9% one party and 50.1% the other. If districts were "balanced" then the legislature would be 100% of the majority party and 0% the minority party, even though the minority party was 49.9% of the population. This is much like the engineering concept of scalability and "similitude".