Tech Bucks

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Tech Bucks qualtrics.com

Don’t laugh too hard at me. The last time I played a video game I chased a small ghosty thing that ate tiny dots along a grid as I moved a stick up, down and sideways directing it along the screen. I visited my nephew recently and he’s playing an online game on his laptop where he puts together cars. Mind you, he’s 13 and knows nothing about driving a car, but he can tell you just virtually everything you want to know about from cam shafts to pistons. The good news is he wants to be a mechanic when he gets out of school, and I guess this is a great way to get him on the right career path-even if he does spend hours upon hours wasting away in the interwebs and has never held a screwdriver in his hand. I applaud all you geeks and tech folks. Computers were introduced at my college when they had green screens (no colors). You took this flexible dinner-plate thingy called a disc and slipped it inside the giant console to record your work. I remember punching a lot of F7 and F2 buttons and screaming at the machine endlessly. Nowadays storage is well, stored in a cloud. Where is said cloud? I have no clue, but I do know my email server has one, and my Apple account and my IPhone has them. I hope a kind person will show me how to find all my clouds one day so I may float happily along in my digital memories.

The big brains at Qualtrics are pretty damned happy and sending GIF’s of Kermit the Frog or Katy Perry pumping their arms and dancing to their friends and competitors. This family-owned Provo, Utah company founded back in 2002 just sold for $8 billion dollars to a German cloud. Qualtrics founders Scott, Ryan, and Jared Smith and Stuart Orgill saw a need for subscription software to collect and analyze data for market research that could show results of customer satisfaction and loyalty. The purchasing company from across the pond was pretty smart as they bought the firm before Qualtrics was about to release the stock IPO. And, this is one of the biggest sales ever in little ol’ Utah!

Huzzah for Utah tech brains and family-run companies. Seriously, it’s estimated we now have between 6000-7000 tech-related firms working within our state borders. Commuters certainly feel that when they try and get to, from or around Lehi-the heart of all big things techie along our Silicon Slopes. According to the Utah Department of Economic Development our top valued tech businesses (besides Qualtrics) are: Workfront, Instructure, Vivint, Ancestry.com and Overstock.com as well as Domo, Pluralsight and Inside Sales.