Local city is a top tech town

Local city is a top tech town

CHAMPAIGN-URBANA -- A website named Champaign-Urbana one of the top tech cities in the country.
CHAMPAIGN-URBANA -- A website named Champaign-Urbana one of the top tech cities in the country. WCIA-3's Gary Brode tells us why.

Techie.com says businesses like Wolfram Research and Volition, not to mention the UI's Research Park, are some of the reasons it comes as no surprise Champaign-Urbana ranked so high. The proof is everywhere.

Pull out your smart phone and asked it a question. Chances are the answer came from Wolfram Research, located in Champaign.

John Koontz with Wolfram Research says, "Wolfram Research is the makers of Mathematica, the research software used worldwide and many global communities, and also the makers of Wolfram Alpha, the global knowledge engine that powers many, many things."

Bored on a Friday night? Maybe you want to play a video game. Many popular games are made in California, New York and Champaign.

"Everyday you come into work, you are working with some of the smartest people, some of the most creative people. It's kind of a dream come true. It's not your normal 9-5 job. I'm the finance guy and and I'm wearing shorts and a scraggly beard," says Matt Madigan, of Volition.

Madigan and Koontz each say the University of Illinois is one of the biggest reasons for the technology development.

Laura Bleill, of Research Park, says "It reflects the quality of the research that's being done on the campus of the University of Illinois which is a huge research engine."

Wolfram and Volition both recruit students right out of the UI and that deep pool of talent is one of the reasons they're staying.

"We're going to stay in the Champaign area. This is our world headquarters. We like it here. We have a great time recruiting here. We also have a number of offices worldwide, but this is the place we want to be and this is where our future lies," says Koontz.

Companies at Research Park are working on everything from cancer therapy to battery technology which would charge your smart phone in less than a minute. Technology is constantly changing and Champaign-Urbana plays an important role in that tech progression.
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