If you are reading this, thank this woman. Her name is Grace Hopper, and she is one of the most under appreciated computer scientists ever. You think Gates and Jobs were cool? THIS WOMAN WORKED ON COMPUTERS WHEN THEY TOOK UP ROOMS. She invented the first compiler, which is a program that translates a computer language like Java or C++ into machine code, called assembly, that can be read by a processor. Every single program you use, every OS and server, was made possible by her first compiler.
Spread the word! (Although I’ll bet there are still some dudebros out there who’ll claim she’s a “fake geek”…)
Favorite fact: She coined the term “debugging” when they had to remove an moth (an actual, living moth) that had gotten trapped in the Mark II computer at Harvard University in 1947. While referring to glitches as bugs existed before, she brought the term into popularity.
She also got the trend of personal computers going with her suggestion to the DoD to use more smaller units rather than one big one.
Please explain to me why I never knew about her before?
you know why
Like, most of the first computer scientists were women. There were just all these brilliant mathematicians who worked in Bletchly park, most of them women, who suddenly had military credentials and experience after WWII. So there was no excuse not to use their genius. First computer language? Designed & implemented by women. First assembler? Designed by women.
So much of computer science is owed to awesome women … who mostly went nameless.