4 Emerging Tech Hubs to Watch

tech hubs

Silicon Valley isn’t the only place where admirably innovative tech companies crop up. Keep reading to learn about four places around the United States that are emerging as technology hubs worth watching.

1. Denver, Colorado

Like other areas of the Midwest, Denver has experienced a slump due to falling oil prices that have hit some refineries particularly hard. However, the Mile High City may soon see an economic resurgence, especially if people are willing to work and invest in the solar energy sector.

Denver already has clusters of energy companies, causing some people to see the city as a hotbed of solar activity. One business that’s doing particularly well is called SunShare, which lets people purchase electricity from solar farms.

Many of the people who used to work in the oil industry and stayed in Colorado have transferred their talents to the solar sector, and some work at SunShare. The locally based company is doing so well that it has opened a second location in Minnesota.

The cannabis growth industry is also becoming extremely high tech as companies leverage big data to discover customer habits, the most potent strains, and other insights. Some companies are also experimenting with aeroponics, a growing method that involves suspending the plant’s roots in carefully controlled environments that dispense food and hydration. It uses less water than traditional methods but results in growth rates that are up to 300 percent higher.

2. Nashville, Tennessee

Once widely known as the place for up and coming country music superstars, Nashville is also branching out and becoming a notable tech hub. For example, HealthCare Appraisers deals with fair market value (FMV) assessments in health care cost appraisals. It has numerous offices, one of which is in Nashville.

The company’s FMV automation tools make it easier for facilities to access fair market values for physicians on call, new employment opportunities for doctors and more.

The city may also assert its dominance in emergency medicine. Nashville recently hosted a summit for over 400 emergency medicine and disaster preparedness experts to help them grow their skills and learn new best practices.

3. New Orleans, Louisiana

After Hurricane Katrina devastated this city, it had to reinvent itself in many ways. One of them was by forming a new charter school system. That evolution has made New Orleans a force to be reckoned with in the educational tech industry. A particular success story is a company called Kickboard, which was a finalist for the EdTech Digital Awards for the fourth year in a row.

The Kickboard platform uses a worthwhile combination of technology and personalized coaching to help teachers establish and maintain nurturing school cultures. According to Kickboard’s CEO, school culture has a major impact on how students learn.

New Orleans already has more than 271 tech startups and companies and 22 of them launched this year. It’ll be interesting to watch as other areas of expertise beyond education begin to become evident.

4. Orlando, Florida

Known as a city people flock to when they want to enjoy theme parks and other entertaining diversions, Orlando has been keeping people occupied in memorable ways for decades. However, a new area of focus is rising in the form of entertainment technology, which encompasses everything you see and do when you take part in all the fun things Orlando offers.

Visitors to a new Universal Orlando water park can use special wristbands that let them pay for things without cash, open lockers and avoid waiting in lines by receiving ride-related alerts. Representatives from Disney’s parks have used similar gadgets for their patrons.

Some of the tech improvements extend to the theme park rides themselves, especially as park executives have looked at ways to deal with declining attendance. Riders on a roller coaster at SeaWorld Orlando don virtual reality goggles, while Legoland’s Ninjago ride lets kids throw fireballs with hand motions.

Now you’re in the loop about four fascinating tech hubs that may not have been previously on your radar. Keeping tabs on all of them could help you learn what’s next.

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Andre Bourque (SocialMarketingFella) is Editor Emeritus of Technorati.

He covers emerging trends and news in social, mobile, cloud, and related technologies.

Based in San Francisco, he can be contacted via his social channels and at: andrefbourque@gmail.com

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