On a day that honors one of the (female) pioneers of computer science, a round-up of our work on women in technology.
Today marks Ada Lovelace Day, named after one of the pioneers of early computer science and devoted to honoring and furthering the accomplishments of women in science, engineering, technology, and math.
Here at The Atlantic's Technology Channel, we write about gender and technology quite a bit. In honor of Ada Lovelace Day, we've rounded up some of our favorite such stories from the past year or so, for your reading pleasure. Here they are in chronological order:
- Siri and Her Girls: Why So Many Robot Helpers Are Ladies Why does Siri, your GPS, and the Amtrak call line all use women's voices? A deep dive into how we assign gender to artificial intelligence.
- In the New York Times, Sheryl Sandberg Is Lucky, Men Are Good A profile of Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg chalked up her success to luck. Do men get the same treatment?
- Deconstructing the Creepiness of the 'Girls Around Me' App--and What Facebook Could Do About It An app scrapes data from Facebook to find women near you. Did the app's designers do anything wrong?
- The 'Girls Around Me' Problem Isn't Just About Data, but Sexism In a response essay, Nathan Jurgenson argues that the 'Girls Around Me' app is just your garden variety privacy issue, but one with a specifically sexist approach.
- We're Really Sorry, Marie Curie The European Commission makes a video to encourage girls to pursue science, and the result is awful.
- 'A Pregnant CEO: In Whose Lifetime?' A 1992 speech takes on new meaning as new Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer announced her pregnancy.
- The Women Who Would Have Been Sally Ride The story of the pervasive sexism that prevented women from becoming astronauts in the early days of space exploration.
- Google Improved Maternity Leave, Post-Partum Attrition Dropped by 50% Can data show us the way to a better set of arrangement to make work easier on moms?
- Thank God Someone Finally Stepped In and Explained the Internet to Women Great, just great. There's a series of books (in French) devoted to helping women understand computers.
- Why the First Laptop Had Such a Hard Time Catching On (Hint: Sexism) It wasn't just a high price that kept businessmen away from early portable computers.
- Can a Kids' Toy Bring More Women Into Engineering? A new company sets its sights on the toy aisle in the hopes of encouraging girls' interest in engineering.