Saturday, March 28, 2015

Saturday Short

Today's short is Queen of Code, directed by actress Gillian Jacobs and produced by Nate Silver and others for the Signals series at FiveThirtyEight. The 16.31-minute documentary is about Rear Admiral Grace Hopper (1906-1992), who worked on the Harvard Mark 1, the first computer. In addition to making numerous other contributions to computer science, Hopper helped develop the programming language COBOL.

A graduate of Vassar College (my and Silver's alma mater), where she excelled in mathematics and physics, Hopper earned a doctorate in mathematics in 1934—she was one of just four women in the 10-student Yale University Ph.D. program. Hopper was deemed a visionary, an exceptional and inspiring leader, and a pioneer in software development concepts. She held nearly 50 honorary degrees and received a number of other awards, including, in 1986, the Defense Distinguished Service Medal.

FiveThirtyEight on FaceBook

Of Interest

Anita Borge Institute for Women and Technology's Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing (FaceBook)

Grace Hopper Profiles at Amazing Women in History, CBS NewsFamous Women Inventors, PBS (A Science Odyssey: People and Discoveries)

"Grace Hopper, Computing Pioneer", Harvard Gazette, December 3, 2014

Laura Sydell, "The Forgotten Female Programmers Who Created Modern Tech", WTF Public Radio, November 12, 2014 (This feature also is found at NPR.)

Selena Larson, "Gillian Jacobs Discusses Her Upcoming Grace Hopper Documentary", Interview, ReadWrite, October 13, 2014

"There'd Be No Steve Jobs Without Grace Hopper", Rethink Science, World Science Festival, October 8, 2014

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