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IT and the White House

Posted by TestOut Staff on

We here at TestOut Continuing Education are in the midst of offering one of our biggest discounts of the year. Right now you can sign up for any training course we offer and get your first month of training for just $5, a discount of more than 90 percent off the normal monthly cost of $79. It's our annual Presidents Day sale, and the $5 price tag is in honor of Abraham Lincoln, one of America's greatest presidents.

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue after dark

Since we're on the subject of U.S. presidents, it's an interesting moment to reflect on the timing of various technological advances at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue (that's the White House, yo), courtesy of the White House Historical Association. "Technology" impacted "the residence" as early as Thomas Jefferson's decision to demolish the outdoor privy and install two modern "water closets."

Actual running water came to the White House in 1833 while Andrew Jackson was in office, with a furnace system following about 10 years later. In 1846, President James K. Polk and members of his cabinet posed in the State Dining Room for a daguerreotype, marking the first formal presidential use of photographic imaging. The first telephone and first typewriter were installed under Rutherford B. Hayes.

Electricity came to the White House while Teddy Roosevelt was in office, along with gas cooking appliances, and automobiles began to replace horse-drawn carriages on the watch of William H. Taft. Franklin D. Roosevelt had a cloakroom converted into a movie theater. By the time Jimmy Carter came along, the country had advanced to the point of installing, in 1978, the first actual White House computers.

President George H.W. Bush became the nation's first chief executive to use e-mail, in 1992, and Bill Clinton fired up the first White House website in 1994. Today the White House has, well, perhaps not the world's most secure computer network, but technology definitely keeps things humming. Who knows what coming years and decades will bring? Perhaps the first president who will hold an IT certification is already in school.


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