Electric power networks represent complex and dynamic envirotechnical systems. By turning other energy resources into electricity, power systems have transformed the American landscape. In the early 1900s utilities gathered and calculated information by hand to improve efficiency, lower costs, and manage primary energy resources. By 1920 the quantity of data available outstripped the ability to process and use it in a timely fashion. Utilities adopted information technologies to better and more quickly under stand the systems they managed. The modern turn to the digital for environmental goals has deep roots in the history of the electric power industry.