When I first came to Lancaster in 2014, I had many discussions with local business owners and entrepreneurs that the technology scene in Lancaster was one of its many “best-kept secrets.” This concept was described by local technologist Mike McMonagle in an article from earlier this year based on his experience growing up in Lancaster and witnessing (and contributing to) its evolution into a technology hub.
If 2016 is any indication, Lancaster’s talented tech community won’t be a secret for long. Technology is top-of-mind for businesses of all types in Lancaster County and the tech community has accomplished a lot over this past year.
Just this morning I read an article about a Lancaster-based technology company expanding its reach: Greenfish Labs, a virtual reality company, announced it was opening a branch office in Las Vegas. This expansion is in addition to several other large projects that Greenfish Labs completed in 2016, including a project for the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia and another World Youth Day held in Krakow, Poland, which featured Pope Francis.
Here are a few more notable achievements and developments in Lancaster’s technology community occurring in 2016:
- Pubforge, a technology-focused coworking space, opened on East King Street in downtown Lancaster.
- NYC-based reputation management company com expanded its operations by opening a Lancaster office. The move will bring over 100 jobs to Lancaster, and described the reasons for choosing Lancaster to include proximity to major cities, a talented workforce, high quality of life and vibrant local culture.
- Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology announced a new program for Computer Software Engineering Technology which was the brainchild of local technology leaders Joel Walker of Industrial Resolution and Chip Cargas of Cargas Systems.
- On November 18, the Lancaster community raised $7.1 million in The Extraordinary Give for local nonprofits, utilizing an app and social media to connect nonprofits, businesses and individuals
- Preregistration opened for Lancaster City’s forthcoming high speed fiber optic network, LanCity Connect.
- Last but not least, I’ll add a shameless plug for something near and dear to my heart: Russell, Krafft & Gruber, LLP formally announced its Information Technology and Internet Law practice group to provide a local solution for legal issues involving technology and the Internet.
This has been a banner year for the technology community in Lancaster. Companies have expanded their influence world-wide, tech leaders and the community have come together to create new opportunities for students and the less fortunate, and countless startups and entrepreneurs took advantage of the resources available to them and began building what could become the next big thing. I’m excited to see what 2017 brings for technology in Lancaster, and what Lancaster can bring the rest of the world.