Monday, December 10, 2012
Google is celebrating the birth of Ada Lovelace today, often called the first programmer in history. The curious part of the celebration is that Ada was a woman, which flies in the face of a popular perception that boys are better at math, and girls don't like anything about arithmetic logic. Celebration of Lovelace's birthday is a good way to confront perception with history. Admittedly, Lovelace came from wealth and had private tutoring, but that served to amplify a talent with numbers. One might ask why more women are not held up as famous mathematicians and the answer to that is unclear. There has been a long-standing bias that the province of logic belongs to men. It might only be that, or there might be other reasons as well. Whatever the case, women today have the opportunity to shine in the handling of numbers, and they do. Ada Lovelace is great PR.