5 Trailblazing Women In The World Of Tech
We honour some of the tech industry's most innovative minds
According to a study by the Pew Research Center, the United States (science, technology, engineering, and math) STEM jobs have rapidly increased by 79 per cent since the 1990s, outpacing other professional sectors. But among these numbers, only 25 per cent of computing jobs were assigned to women. In another research, the group found that 74 per cent of women in these jobs said they had experienced gender discrimination at work, some have complained about receiving lesser pay than their male counterparts.
Despite these reports, there are still women who've stood their ground. Here are five female trailblazers to know:
Whitney Wolfe Herd
Whitney Wolfe Herd is the founder and CEO of social and dating app Bumble. Launched in 2014, the software allows two people to "match" and chat online. The catch? Females have the power to start the conversation.
In an interview with Tatler, Herd explained that her brand wants to empower as many women as possible."We built Bumble to provide a digital space where users can connect with each other through kindness, accountability, and respect. By having women make the first move, we empower them to take control over the relationship with confidence.”
Wolfe Herd was named as one of 2017's and 2018's Forbes 30 Under 30, and in 2018 she was named in the Time 100 List.
Thirty-four-year-old Melanie Perkins is the chief executive officer and co-founder of Canva, a graphic designed platform that made digital art tools accessible to many people. Perkins has amassed a personal fortune of US$6 billion as of June 2020, making her the youngest billionaire in Australia.
In one of her interviews, Perkins disclosed that the company was just a humble online yearbook design business that started in her mum's living room. Today, the company has grown to over 200 employees and 30 million users in around 200 countries.
Hedy Lamar is a Hollywood star who helped invent Wi-Fi. Lamarr, along with her co-inventor George Anthiel, developed a miniaturised player-piano mechanism with radio signals. They drafted a design for a frequency hopping system which was given a patent in 1942.
In 1977, the inventors were recognised for their works; they were awarded the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) Pioneer Award. In 2014, Lamar was also included in the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Now that's beauty with a purpose!
Do not let her name fool you. Grace Hopper is not as small as a "grasshopper" at all.
Hopper was an esteemed computer scientist and one of the first computer programmers to work on the Harvard Mark I computer. Her efforts led to the development of COBOL (Common Business-Oriented Language), a high-level programming language for business applications that we still use today.
In 1947, Hopper recorded the worlds first ever real computer bug.
If you're a big fan of space or anything cosmic, you might have heard the name Annie Easley.
Easley is a trailblazer for gender and racial diversity in STEM. She worked as a scientist, mathematician, and rocket scientist at the Lewis Research Center of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and its predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA).
She was also the leading member of the team that developed software for the Centaur rocket stage and was one of the first African-Americans to work as a computer scientist at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).