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More recognition for Ada Lovelace, The First Coder

April 26, 2011

This is great.  More recognition for Ada Lovelace, the woman who invented programming.  Its’ from an interesting interview between John Naughton (who writes an ace column on technology) and James Gleick (who wrote the ace book ‘Chaos‘):

JN: I found your account of the life and achievements of Ada Lovelace very moving. She has a pretty good claim to be recognised as the first computer programmer, and yet her story is a classic case-study in how brilliant women can be airbrushed from history, much as Rosalind Franklin was in the double helix story. It was good to see her being given her due.

JG: I think of all the people who come and go in my book, she is my favourite. Worse than being airbrushed from history, she was never written in. She had a brief flash of celebrity as Byron’s daughter, but no one, with the lone exception of Charles Babbage, had a chance to glimpse her formidable mathematical powers. We can see it now in retrospect. She could never publish under her name; never belong to a professional society; never even attend university. Yet, working with Babbage as an anonymous younger sidekick, she surpassed his vision of what his proposed computing machines could do and could be. “First programmer” is apt. She was a genius.

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