Friday, February 22, 2008

Women in Computing

I noticed this when I was collecting material for a worthy tome on computer science, reading the biographies of computer scientists. It seems that in computing, like at Creative writing societies, the men are usually dull and introverted whilst the women are anything but. I submit to you, dear reader, three women who were pioneers in the field.

Firstly, Ada King, Countess of Lovelace

Widely regarded as 'the first programmer' Ada Lovelace worked with Charles Babbage in his Creation of the Analytical Engine. She developed a program that, had it been built, would have calculated er, something mathematical*

Secondly, Rear Admiral Grace Hopper

She was one of those people who, in military research offices, grappled with punchcards and valves, trying to harness the power of computers the size of houses with the processing capability of digital watch. she was also rather senior in the US navy. odd that.

and lastly, Hedy Lamarr

the co-inventor of the Spread Spectrum - a way of protecting radio signals from being intercepted or corrupted - used in anything wireless these days.


*I'm interested in this sort of thing, but that doesn't mean I understand it in the slightest. I'm a humanities graduate with rather limited interests, sorry.