ada_lovelace_portrait 11/10/2016

Could this be the very first girl computer geek?

Ada Lovelace is quite a remarkable lady; definitely an inspiration for some of our ladies in tech.  She is one of the very first computer programmers.

A bit of history for you

Lord Byron, the famous poet, was Ada’s father. She was raised by her mother, Anabella. Fearing that Ada would inherit her father’s poetic character, she focused on teaching Ada science, mathematics and ‘more logical’ subjects.

What Ada became ‘known’ for

Ada became captivated by mechanisms. Embracing the Industrial Revolution and methodical publications, she designed steam flying machines.  She introduced an Engine in partnership with Charles Babbage in 1833.  This was an early predecessor of the modern computer, which was named ‘The Analytical Engine’. Both Ada and Charles developed the device over a number of years.

Lovelace is referred to as ‘the first computer programmer’This is owing to the fact that she translated an article in 1842 describing the Analytical Engine. The article contains several early ‘computer programs,’ and her take on the variety of uses of the machine, including the manipulation of symbols and the creation of music. Babbage himself “spoke highly of her mathematical powers, and of her peculiar capability — higher he said than of any one he knew, to prepare the descriptions connected with his calculating machine.”

Sadly, Ada passed away age 36. She died of cancer only a few years after the publication of ‘Sketch of the Analytical Engine, with Notes from the Translator’.

Her passion and vision for technology have made Ada Lovelace a powerful symbol for women in the modern world of technology. If she was still alive today, Ada would definitely be on our list of invitees or guest speaking at WITBoss; our networking event for Women in Technology.

To read more about Ada Lovelace and Ada Lovelace Day, click here.

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