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San Francisco: Where Rich History Meets Innovation (Video)

Photonics.com
Jan 2017
Photonics West Sneak Preview

Each year, the city of San Francisco welcomes the photonics community to the biggest conference and exhibition in the world — Photonics West. For many, the industry’s new year begins here, coming alive with the latest research and the newest products.

From Market Street to Union Square…..Chinatown to the Golden Gate Bridge…..this city by the bay is as well known for its progressive culture as it is for being home to technology hubs including Twitter, Craigslist and Pinterest.

With a bright future in view, the city celebrates a rich history, too. Its American roots were set in the mid-19th century, just before the famed Gold Rush turned it into what was described as a cosmopolitan metropolis with a frontier edge. By 1849, San Francisco had become known as the largest and most important population — jumping from about 1,000 to 25,000 residents in a year’s time — and commercial, naval and financial center in the West. Construction of the Central Pacific Railroad toward the end of that century rapidly expanded San Francisco even further.

But as it flourished, the city’s growth was set back by the great earthquake and fire of 1906. The San Andreas Fault slipped more than 10 feet, prompting broken water mains and triggering fires that raged for days. Several thousand people perished, and an estimated 250,000 people were left homeless, as at least 25,000 buildings were destroyed.

The devastation only served to fuel the city’s resilience, however. Rebuilt quickly, it became better than ever. In fact, less than a decade after the infamous earthquake and fires, San Francisco hosted the Panama–Pacific International Exposition world’s fair.

The city’s growth continued, and with fervor, well into the 1930s, with construction of the Golden Gate and San Francisco Bay bridges, and development of areas such as Chinatown, Pacific Heights, and Hayes Valley.

Today, San Francisco is a captivating mix of natural beauty, rich history, and innovation, where the revolutionary essence of the photonics industry can feel right at home.

Join me next week as I explore the excitement that makes this city by the bay so grand.

SPIE Photonics West 2017San FranciscoPhotonics WestChinatownMarket StreetUnion SquareGolden Gate BridgeTwitterCraigslistPinterestprogressiveGold Rushearthquake1906San Andreas FaultPanama–Pacific International ExpositionSan Francisco Bay BridgePacific HeightsHayes Valley

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