Amazon's new spheres take shape in downtown Seattle, part of the state's big building boomWashington State has a problem most regions would envy: A burgeoning technology center that rivals Silicon Valley and which has gained its own share of fame and fortune in the Internet of Things.

The two tech centers have a lot in common and are growing closer every day, if not geographically then culturally, as Silicon Valley companies open engineering offices in Seattle and Seattle companies open offices in the Valley. Moreover, they share similar histories, and where Silicon Valley is famed for its startup ecosystem, Washington is fast becoming cloud city, with Amazon and Microsoft leading the way in cloud computing and big data.

Check out this great article in The Economist to learn how these two West Coast juggernauts are changing the face of the tech world while still retaining their unique urban lifestyles.