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Gov. Perry announces a $2 Million Emerging Tech Fund Award

The money will be used for the continued development of software modules to assist first responders in continuous real time protection of the border and emergency preparedness and responses in disaster situations

From the Office of Gov. Rick Perry

August 1, 2007

Government - Gov. Perry picture AUSTIN–Gov. Rick Perry announced a $2 million award to SecureOrigins Inc. of El Paso to help bring its emerging technology to market. The grant is awarded through the Texas Emerging Technology Fund (TETF), a $200 million initiative created by the Texas Legislature in 2005 at the governor’s request and re-authorized this year.

“Technological innovation is the lifeblood of today’s economy. Through these grants, we are investing in potentially life-saving technologies and elevating our state’s emerging technology sector to make Texas a strong competitor in the global marketplace,” Perry said. “Continued investment in emerging technology creates more jobs and generates substantial capital investments, diversifying and enriching our economy.”

SecureOrigins Inc. of El Paso is receiving $2 million for further development of its Intelligent Software Agents (ISA). ISA are software modules that automate specific tasks, provide round-the-clock decision support and collaborate with each other without human intervention to determine best response action.

ISA will be used for such functions as:

  • Assisting first responders in continuous real time protection of the border, and emergency preparedness and response involving high volumes of information and fast changing variables. For example, in a disaster situation, the ISA will synthesize complex information from a myriad of sensors and sources to provide simplified options for decision making by first responders.
  • Assisting cross-border industry in real time visibility of their end-to-end supply chain logistics. For example, sensor devices compatible with ISA would be placed on a delivery truck, moving goods from one country to another to ensure compliance with authorized routes and timing benchmarks. The ISA could detect any interruption of travel or tampering with the vehicle, which would then alert the appropriate authorities of the unexpected activity.
  • A 17-member advisory committee of high-tech leaders, entrepreneurs and research experts reviews potential TETF projects and recommends funding for projects to the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the House.

The 2008-2009 state budget recently passed by the legislature and signed by the governor includes $75 million in new general revenue for the TETF. In addition to previous TETF balances and interest, more than $165 million will be available for the 2008-09 biennium.

To date, the TETF has allocated $89.1 million in grant funds to Texas companies and universities.

The TETF program has three main areas of investment:

  • Increasing research collaboration between public and private sector entities through new Regional Centers of Innovation and Commercialization where the seeds of an idea can take root in a university lab and eventually grow into a new product marketed by a new or expanding firm;
  • Matching research grants provided by both federal and private sponsors to help innovators acquire the capital they need to bring their idea to life; and
  • Attracting more top-notch research teams from other universities around the nation that will help put Texas universities on the cutting edge of technology research and development.

For more information on the TETF, visit .

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