New talks explore Boca’s tech comeback

Will Boca make a comeback as a high-tech hub? Not for lack of trying.

The personal computer was born in Boca at IBM’s former complex here that peaked at 10,000 employees in the ‘80s? Reborn as Boca Raton Innovation Campus,  BRiC has teamed up with the historical society and experts for three virtual Tech Talks on the city’s past and future as a technology center.

The Evolution of Tech & Innovation in Boca Raton series on Feb. 23 and March 2 and 9 will feature panel discussions exploring how a resort community became a tech incubator. And what that could mean for the city’s future.

Each program is 45 minutes and can be viewed on BRiC’s channels on YouTube and/or Facebook. The programs are free but here’s an RSVP link:

  • Noon, Tuesday, Feb. 23, “The Early Years: Technology of Radar, IBM, Boca Raton and the First PC (1940s-1981).” Panelists: historian/author Sally Ling, Dr. Dave Bradley, one of 12 engineers who worked on the original IBM PC. Moderated by Susan Gillis, curator, Boca Raton Historical Society & Museum
  • Noon, Tuesday March 2, “Boca Raton as Silicon Beach, 1980s-2000s.” Panelists      Harold Braun, Siemans; Pedro del Sol, Sensormatic, Scott Adams, STRAX Intelligence Group. Moderated by Pete Martinez, former IBMer and medical tech consultant
  • Noon, Tuesday, March 9, “Today’s Technology Scene & Expectations for the Future.” Panelists Daniel Cane, CEO and co-founder, Modernizing Medicine; Andrew Duffell, president, Research Park at Florida Atlantic University; Angelo Bianco, managing partner Crocker Partners, owner of BRiC. Moderated by Jessica del Vecchio, Economic Development manager, city of Boca Raton

Here’s a link to the historical society’s look at IBM in Boca Raton as the center of the tech universe:

Designed by Marcel Breuer, BRiC was built by IBM in 1969 and acquired by Crocker Partners in 2018 with the vision of restoring the campus as a science and technology hub. BRiC is currently home to 18 national headquarters and 19 regional offices including Canon, Kroger, Modernizing Medicine, and Bluegreen Vacations.


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