Monday, September 25, 2006

Downtown Technology Incubator

I was went to my first press conference ever yesterday. It was a good time. I got to meet Ben Konop who is running for the Lucas County Commissioner. He is put forth a proposal to start a high tech incubator downtown. This proposal in it's essence is to help spur tech startups using state funds. The facilty would provide some technical support, utility discounts and other such incentives. The inspiration came from the Youngstown Business Incubator.

The Non-profit organization a (501 (c) 3 charitable , non-profit corporation) out in Youngstown was able, with their incubator, to create about 200 tech jobs, and 16 patents since the year 2000, when they started. Primarily they work with B2B software. Here are a list of the companies that are part of the incubator out there.

This proposal seems like a very good idea to me. It would provide opportunities to technical people who normally wouldn't have the funding to start developing the ideas they have.
I think that in order for Toledo's ecconomic survival it needs an industry other than manufacturing. I think that the talent is definately in the area between all the universities in the area that provide high tech education: University of Toledo's Engineering and business technology and technical degrees, Bowling Green State University's progams and Owens technical degrees.

Mr. Konop suggested that the people who end up being involved in the incubator can determine which high tech industry to pursue. Whether or not Ben wins the election I'd like this idea to continue. It is encouraging that someone is thinking about ways to encourage tech business in the area.

I want to thank Lisa Renee at the glass city jungle for posting the press conference notice.

One thing that I found interesting with being at the press conference was that only a couple of people showed up for the press conference. Don from the Nookular Option was there along with a reporter Erica Blake from The Toledo Blade, a camera man from WTOL was there too. It was fun. I feel like a real reporter.

I think that with this sort of creative ideas I think that Toledo could become a better place.

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