Welcome to Women’s History Month:   Women in Technology

Ada Lovelace is considered the “Founder of Scientific Computing.” 

As the daughter of Lord Byron, she traveled in the educated circles of London. In 1833 met Charles Babbage, the inventor of the “Analytical Engine.”  Although it was never built, it shared many elements of the modern computer.  Ada Lovelace’s notes on the project were the inspiration for the computers built in the 1940’s, a century later.

Hedy Lamar may be best known as a Hollywood actor and World War II spy

but she was also a self-taught inventor.  She received a patent in 1942 for her “secret communication system.”  It was used to send radio-guided torpedos off course during the war.  Her technology inspired today’s WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth.

Elizabeth Feinler Oversaw all internet addresses

as the Director of the Network Information System Center at Stanford. She developed the first search engine with “white pages” and “yellow pages,” like the telephone directories.  It was her idea to name domains based on where they were housed, such as military, education, organization or business. The domain suffixes “dot mil,” “dot edu,” “dot org” and “dot com” are still the most common in the domain naming system.

Susan Kare was employee #10 at Steve Job’s first company NEXT.

She worked with him to design the original icons for the MacIntosh computer.  The paintbrush, moving watch and trash can elements are her designs still in use today. 


working on the “Black Team” at the National Advisory Committee of Aeronautics (NACA) in Langley, VA.  She manually ran the computations on her desktop that the machine used to send man into orbit.  She and her fellow Black American “computers” were showcased in the 2016 movie “Hidden Figures.”


A computer scientist, mathematician and USN Rear Admiral (lower class), she was the first to devise the theory of machine independent programming languages.  She believed computer language should be based on English. “It’s much easier for people to write an English statement than it is to use symbols.”  Contrary to the prevalent belief at the time, she maintained that data processors could write in English and the computers could then translate it into machine code. 

In 2020, Google named the industrial network cable that connected the US, the UK and Spain the “Grace Hopper.”  The same year, the United States Naval Academy (USNA) completed the first addition to the Annapolis campus in almost 50 years.  Hopper Hall is built specifically for the study of cyber security.  It’s also the first USNA building named after a woman AND the first building at ANY of the three military academies.  Still.