There are many reasons that Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election, and one is because he was seen as being a trend-setter in finding ways to incorporate new technologies in his campaign.
Now, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, Obama is turning to technology's epicenter in a bid to ensure he stays on the cutting edge. The Chronicle reported today that the president's re-election campaign has opened a technology field office in San Francisco, a move that may be unprecedented in politics.
"We learned from 2008 that using the talents and skills of our supporters was a key to building the most effective organization," Obama campaign deputy press secretary Katie Hogan told the Chronicle. "We're taking the next step by providing tools and space for supporters in the technology community to help the campaign extend our current tools...and mobile applications."
It's not entirely clear what kind of work will be done in the new field office, or how many people will eventually be stationed there. For now, the Chronicle reported, there is just one staffer based there, although the campaign is looking for volunteers to help round out its tech team.
Obama's 2008 campaign was seen as ground-breaking for its use of social media and online tools, an edge that was largely credited to Chris Hughes, one of Facebook's earliest employees, who was then chosen to run the then-senator's online efforts.
The Obama administration also turned to technology as a solution to many of the issues it tried to confront by hiring both a chief technology officer, and a chief information officer, and by launching an open-government initiative that leaned heavily on tech to address longstanding problems.