Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Happy Ada Lovelace Day!

Today is Ada Lovelace Day! That means it is a day to celebrate achievements made by women in the fields of science and technology.

Today I chose to honor not Ada Lovelace herself, but another great women in sci-tech, Rear Admiral Grace Hopper.

Grace Hopper was one of the very first computer programmers, having worked on the Harvard Mark I, a.k.a your home computer's great-grandad. Her great contributions to the field of technology and her years of service in the U.S. Navy earned her one of the very few ships in history to be named after a woman, the U.S.S. Hopper.

And perhaps not quite as importantly, she's also credited with coining the term 'debugging' after having helped to literally remove a moth from a computer.

Here's a nice bit of her in the 80's explaining nanoseconds.

Choosing just one woman to honor today was tricky. There were so many great stories I came upon during my research. I reckon my choice was inspired by the of various elements of Hopper's story that reminded me of my own grandparents' stories.... serving in the Navy in WWII, working as a woman in the tech field way back when most women didn't work, working on big important technology changing projects, etc. etc.

And though Grace Hopper might be very famous in the sci-tech world, I figured she might not be all that well known in the world of art and craft blogs, so an introduction would be keen.

Plus, I like her feistiness.

As far as the art part of this blog post goes, the portrait of the young Hopper is digital and very different from my norm (I called upon skills from my A Scanner Darkly days to help some, methinks), and includes a moth in need of debugging, waves to refer to her Navy service, and blue because, apparently (at least according to one interview), she likes blue.
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1 comment:

Sam said...

They both seem to be very strong women worthy of admiration who have made great strides.