Women who Influenced the Tech Industry

The science and math industry has a problem – it’s called diversity.

While tech industry is a male dominated field, that doesn’t mean that women weren’t part of the movement. In honor of International Women’s Day, here are some of the key women in tech who helped pave the way for today’s innovations.

An Innovative Computer Programmer

Ada Lovelace is considered to be the world’s first computer programmer, but  did you know that she developed the programming for a computer that didn’t even exist. She worked with Charles Babbage, who was trying to build a machine to count Bernoulli numbers. For years, Ada’s work went unnoticed, but she’s celebrated every year on the second Tuesday in October on Ada Lovelace Day.

Video Game Development

If you enjoy adventure games, you should remember Roberta Williams. Williams helped to shape the concept of video games with complicated storylines and complex plots. Williams and her husband co-founded Sierra Entertainment, a company that innovated how we play video games. She retired in 1999, but clearly understands her impact on the industry and women in tech.

Google’s First Female Engineer

Vara-Mayer-Yahoo-1200

Marissa Mayer was Google’s employee number 20, joining the team when Google was just a start-up. This woman in tech has been instrumental in how people search. She played a key role in developing Google Maps, Street View and Local Search. She was a member of Google’s executive operating committee and continues to be an innovator in search engine technology as Yahoo! President and CEO.

 Screen Star Turned Inventor

Hedy Lamarr made movies before World War II, but got bored with the lack of acting challenges. She took up inventing, with hopes of contributing to the war efforts. She worked with George Antheil, a composer, to develop spread-spectrum technology, which they patented and shared with the Navy. This technology helped to shape Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technologies.

These are just a few examples of the many women in tech who shaped today’s electronics. We’re excited to see more women entering the tech industry creating more diversity and more innovations. Who do you look up to?

Photo of Mayer via www.newyorker.com