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History of Technology in KC

by Angela Orr | Jul 17, 2014

The innovative and pioneering spirit of Kansas City can be traced back to the days of the wagon trains heading west on the Oregon, California and Santa Fe trails. Modern innovation and technology truly began in KC in the mid- to late 70s.

Technology has become a key to economic success, and several Kansas City companies are leaders in the technology industry. 

Three friends - Neal Patterson, Cliff Illig and Paul Gorup - met at a picnic table in Kansas City’s Loose Park in 1979. From their discussions about the future of health care and entrepreneurial spirit, the idea for Cerner Corporation was born. Cerner has become the leading supplier of health information technology solutions. The technology developed by Cerner since 1979 has revolutionized healthcare by eliminating paperwork, reducing errors and maintaining comprehensive patient health records.       

Leading the way in global positioning system (GPS) technology is Kansas City-based Garmin. In the early 1990s, Garmin’s first handheld GPS units supported the Coalition Forces in the Gulf War. Garmin continues to lead the GPS technology industry in both sales and critical acclaim. Its nuvi personal navigation system was a holiday best-seller in 2006.

KCnext is the regional technology effort for the Kansas City area. KCnext promotes the region's tech sector, supporting its members and galvanizing the tech industry via following objectives:

  • Recruit and build employment
  • Amplify the Kansas City area's assets
  • Educate and network

Kansas City’s diverse technology industry spans many businesses, projects, companies and products, and continues to expand and develop.

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