THESE WOMEN CHANGED TECHNOLOGIES…
It is their biographies and achievements which are often forgotten not included in history books. But if it was not for them, today’s world of technology would not be the same. Who are the women that changed technologies?
“Amazing Grace” – the woman who taught computers to talk
“The most damaging phrase in the language is: It’s always been done that way” – Grace Hopper
Grace Hopper was the first woman with a doctorate in mathematics at Yale, rear admiral in the United States Navy and the creator of the first compiler.
During World War II, she participated in the development of translators and the first programming languages. Before that, computers had been programmed only at the level of binary code. Hopper claimed that if you teach them the “language” which everybody will be able to read, more people will become programmers. In her time the idea was considered to be pure madness. However, persistence and skill allowed Hopper to create the first compiler and COBOL language.
One day a moth fell into Harvard Mark I – the machine which she worked on with her team. Employees who had repaired it named their operation debugging. Hopper liked the name. After this event, she popularized the term “bug” and “debugging”, until this day used to describe errors in the code.
Can poetry and science overlap?
“I never am really satisfied that I understand anything; because, understand it well as I may, my comprehension can only be an infinitesimal fraction of all I want to understand.” Ada Lovelace
Ada Lovelace is the most popular figure in this ranking. By many called the first programmer in history. She is considered to be the author of the first published program. It was written with the intention to use it on Babbage’s analytical machine. Lovelace claimed that it could be used to create graphics, music or for scientific purposes.
She thought that intuition and imagination were the key to proper use of mathematical theories. She called her approach “poetic science”. It was her mother who inspired her and gave her passion for mathematics.
Many years after her death Ada Lovelace accomplishments are remembered. In 1980, the name of the new programming language – Ada – was approved, and her image is imprinted on Microsoft products certificates of authenticity.
The actress to whom we owe WiFi
“All creative people want to do the unexpected.” Hedy Lamarr
If the British ship with 90 children on board was not torpedoed in the 1940s, perhaps today there would be no WiFi. That event inspired Hedy Lamarr to solve the problem of how to precisely attack U-boats. She invented the way to safely control torpedoes using radio waves. The controller had to send signals at variable frequencies. As a result, the risk of overtaking the weapon by the enemy was eliminated.
Her invention was patented in 1941, and started the technologies which are in use today, such as mobile phones, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. After 1980, Lamarr’s idea found a commercial application. Safe Communication System is used also in GSM telephone technology. Thanks to the system there is no interference between signals sent by many users.
Lamarr was not only capable inventor, but also a famous actress. In addition, her image appeared on CorelDRAW product packaging in 1998.
- On 10/03/2017