Ada Lovelace day

A while ago I pledged to write a blog post for Ada Lovelace day. The whole point of the day is to celebrate the role of women in technology. I was quite surprised by the reaction of some of my colleagues to the idea. Some people seemed to think it was patronizing – but I really do think that this is a great idea as we do still need to take every opportunity to celebrate female role models, particularly in technology there is still a male bias. I was listening to the Guardian’s tech weekly podcast the other week, and Suw Charman-Anderson (organiser of the day) was talking about the what her motivations were for organising the day. I think she summed it all up by saying “women don’t pimp their sh*t ” in the same way as men. So I’m going to indulge in a bit of pimping now.

I am very fortunate as I get to work with some really talented, inspirational people (women and men) everyday. I do really believe that the small JISC world I inhabit is a great model for equality. However, there are still more male developers than female and I’d really love to see a few more proper geek girls. So today, instead of just choosing one person to write about I’d just like to take a few minutes to celebrate all the great women I work with, read about and admire in the field of educational technology – too many to mention but you all know who you are – the extended sisters of CETIS. To all of us who have been the only, or one of the few females in meetings (particularly at standard bodies meetings), let’s keep going and hope that more females come onboard. Of course I do have to make one exception and say a big thank you to Lorna Campbell for being a mentor, role model and all round great gal pal :-)

Let’s celebrate today and hope that celebrating the lives and work of women like Ada Lovelace will help inspire us all (women and men) and the next generation too.

2 thoughts on “Ada Lovelace day

  1. I chalk that up as Finding Ada Day 3 posts for Ms Campbell! See also here and here.

    Join you in shouting out to the Sisters of CETIS including all the women I’ve met working in the wider JISC and repositories communities. I recently participated in some academic research on women working in tech-dom. What I’ve observed over the past 9 years is that, the more established JISC and CETIS get (as the empire beds down and expands) the less friendly it gets for women. Also, the higher women go in the hierarchy and the more powerful and successful we become, the less friendly it gets for us. No surprises there, of course, but I hope we keep supporting each other as we always have done, and also keep mentoring new women coming into our professional community. Shout-out to Natalie Kerracher while I’m on it: one of Intrallect’s software developers, and one of a cohort studying computer science recently that included so many women they had an all-women project group that apparently came top-of-the-class!

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