Apparently today is Ada Lovelace Day. I didn’t know about this day until a few hours ago when Tris Hussey told me about it. For those of you similarly unaware, Ada Lovelace Day is a day in which we honour women in tech that we respect by writing a blog post about them.
The day is named after Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace. Ada is mainly known for having written a description of Charles Babbage‘s early mechanical general-purpose computer, the analytical engine. She is today appreciated as the “first programmer” since she was writing programs—that is, manipulating symbols according to rules—for a machine that Babbage had not yet built. She also foresaw the capability of computers to go beyond mere calculating or number-crunching while others, including Babbage himself, focused only on these capabilities – from Wikipedia
Pretty amazing to think of anyone, female or male, being so advanced and forward thinking. She did this in the early-mid 1800s, whilst I myself am only just learning to code.
When I think of the women in technology that I have interacted with in the past year and a half, it is pretty difficult to limit this post to one woman. There are so many women in tech that I respect and are amazed by. I know last year I was impressed with all the women that were involved in putting Bridging Media together with Meg and I. I want to make this celebration special, however, so I am going to highlight three women whom I was fortunate enough to recently share a panel with at the Women in Film Festival New Media Day – Monica Hamburg, Carol Sill and Gillian Shaw.
Monica Hamburg, because she never seizes to surprise me with how many ways she can use social media to bring a smile to my face and a chuckle to my belly.
Carol Sill, because she was one of the first people to introduce me to blogging and social media. Even though she came from a world of traditional media, she immediately recognized the value of emerging and social media, embraced it whole heartedly, and shared it with those around her.
Gillian Shaw, because she is a testament to the fact that we can bridge traditional and emerging media, and by altering the manner in which we tell our stories, we will see media evolve rather than die.
Ladies – I do hope we get to do the second half of our panel, sometime in the not so distant future. I feel most fortunate for knowing and sharing with each of you.