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Today, October 16th, is Ada Lovelace Day.

Ada Lovelace, for those who didn’t already know (and you all do, right? * wink *), also called Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace, is one of the shining stars in mathematics and computer history.

Ada Lovelace, a woodcut graphic by Colin Adams based on the original watercolor by Alfred Edward Chalon. Donated by the Ada Initiative to Wikimedia Commons.

Yep, you heard right – a _girl_ was incredibly good at maths :P

She was born and lived during the 1800s, and it known primarily for her work on Babbage’s analytical machine*.

Which means that, in some circles at least, she is also considered to have been the world’s first computer programmer.

Anyway, today is her day!

There’s a lovely page on the website Finding Ada devoted to the day, and I encourage you to go check it out. Christchurch City Libraries has also put out this great list of nonfiction books about female scientists.

And a fun challenge – what’s YOUR favourite story about women in STEM (science, technology, engineering. ,maths).  Who has inspired you?

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Related posts

Greetings, 2012ers (in which I talk about the Ada Initiative, and going to a barcamp held by them)

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* I’ve seen a giant replica of its predecessor, the Difference Engine, at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. Huge, and amazing.**

** The Difference Engine was never actually built during Babbage’s lifetime, and the question remains whether it would have been possible to do so (even if anyone had tried), given milling technology at the time.  Now, anyone can make their own using 3d printing, and plans are underfoot to construct a wor