Ada Lovelace Day: Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and all the Hidden Figures

October 10, 2017

A bit late with the posting, but it’s still Ada Lovelace Day on the East Coast of the US, so close enough.

(Classes kicking my butt!)

A few years ago I honored the Eniac “Computers” so this year it more than makes sense to honor the NASA “hidden computers”… the black women who’s computational efforts made much of US space travel possible.

The film is terrific. I mean, really really good. It was such a delight to watch (with plenty of bits to get outraged about and some standard historical movie cliches to be annoyed by). I have the book, Hidden Figures, queued up for my pleasure reading when classes are over and there’s a children’s book version coming out in Jan 2018 which I will be giving out like cake.

The attention to detail, the mathematical sophistication, teamwork, and the sheer problem solving creativity these woman showed in an incredibly hostile environment should be an inspiration to all programmers.

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