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Pennsylvania Technology Milestones, Timeline

Governor Tom Ridge has been instrumental in several IT projects during his tenure. Here are a few of the tasks undertaken.

1995, State Of Pennsylvania Home Page Created
Pennsylvania is the 48th state to gain a presence on the Web. Ridge makes it happen during his first year in office.
Pennsylvania homepage
The Justice Network March 1996, The Justice Network
The Justice Network provides seamless data sharing between criminal-justice agencies. It's now being expanded to include local governments in Pennsylvania.
June 1996, Link-To-Learn
Ridge signs budget legislation authorizing Link-to-Learn, a $166 million effort to put more technology into schools and bolster tech training for teachers.
Link To Learn
Y2K Project August 1996, Y2K Project Kickoff
Ridge directs agencies to take aggressive steps to address Y2K issues, years before most other states begin to ramp up.
December 1996, Public Safety Radio Project
Ridge allocates state funding to build a unified, statewide 800-MHz radio network, moving agencies from a number of aging, incompatible radio systems to a single system offering better emergency-response capabilities.
Public Safety Radio Project
Data Powerhouse Project Begins Early 1997, Data PowerHouse Project Begins
The Data PowerHouse effort consolidates and outsources 17 state agency data centers. In October 2000, partnering with Unisys, Pennsylvania would become the first state to successfully complete such an effort, saving millions and dramatically improving agencies' disaster readiness.
January 1998, Technology 21 Report
Drawing on ideas from industry leaders, the Tech 21 report requested by Ridge outlines Pennsylvania's technology policy to drive statewide economic development and global competitiveness.
Technology 21 Report
Tech Atlas Spring 1998, Tech Atlas
Pennsylvania is the only state to develop an online mapping service, identifying the location of the state's high-tech resources--from fiber lines to satellite links--used for economic development and a statewide infrastructure-planning tool. The atlas' data is constantly updated by the University of Pittsburgh.
June 1999, Digital Greenhouse
Ridge launches a partnership among industry, universities, and government to make the Pittsburgh region a national leader in next-generation, system-on-a-chip technology.
Digital Greenhouse
Online Procurements September 1999, Online Procurements
Working with Pennsylvania-based FreeMarkets OnLine, Ridge leads an effort to use online competitive auctions to buy needed items, from coal to aluminum, saving state taxpayers millions.
July 2000, Friction-Free Government
Ridge earmarks $20 million to move more state government services online, from driver?s license renewals to Web-based business registration. Another $10 million follows in July 2001.
Friction-Free Government
Powerport October 2000, PA PowerPort
After Pennsylvania wins a national "Best of the Web" award in 1998, Ridge charges state agencies to keep the state's home page ahead of the pack. The result is the PAPowerPort, one of the first state government portals in the nation.
February 2001, Digital School Districts
Challenging the state?s schools to use technology in innovative ways to improve the delivery of education, Ridge announces three ?digital schools districts? to receive $2 million each and serve as models for the commonwealth.
Digital School Districts
Imagine PA March 2001, Imagine PA (ERP)
Rather than upgrade state agencies? computerized business systems in a piecemeal fashion, Ridge launches an effort using SAP software to better integrate business processes and position Pennsylvania for leadership in delivering online services.