They make the difference!

Women are responsible for many inventions that drive the advancement of Information Technology.

The technology market has always been predominantly male, but even though they are not the majority, women have been and are responsible for many inventions that have driven the advancement of this science that is becoming increasingly essential to us. And there's no better day than Women's Day to pay tribute to the pioneering spirit of some of them.

To begin with, let's talk about a countess who began at the dawn of technology, even before there was any record of activity in this area. Countess Ada Lovelace was the first woman or man to process an algorithm on a machine, making her the first programmer in history. As we can imagine, at that time, writing program code was unimaginable, meaning that it was a big step towards the beginning of all the great innovations that exist in the technology market today.

Another woman who was also "one step ahead of her time" was Grace Hopper. The American was a systems analyst. Among her many accolades, the most famous were: Queen of Computing, Queen of Coding, Grandmother of COBOL and Grand Dame of Software. All these names are mere details for the achievements of Hopper, who developed the flow-matic programming language, one of the first to be translated into English. This language was essential for the creation of COBOL (Common Business Oriented Language), which is widely used in the market.

A curious fact about Grace Hopper is that she coined the term that is still part of the vocabulary of programmers and analysts today. When she discovered that her computer was malfunctioning due to a dead insect inside the machine, Hopper called the problem a "bug", a term that is still used to designate a flaw in software.

It's gratifying to learn about these historical facts that still mark the history of technology today, isn't it?

But believe me, it's even more incredible when you discover that researching all this is possible thanks to another pioneer. British Karen Sparck Jones has developed a basis for search and localization systems known as "inverse term frequency". In short, it's a filtered language of what appears in texts, showing the relevance of topics to searches. Instead of trying to teach people how to use code to operate computers, as most scientists did, Sparck Jones taught computers to understand a common language.

Her theories are still used today by researchers who, as a tribute to Sparck, named an award that recognizes researchers in the field of information retrieval the "Karen Sparck Jones Award" in 2008, a year after her death.

The portrait of Karen Sparck Jones was of a woman who always sought to overcome barriers, especially in a market where men have always occupied more space than women. However, this was never a problem for this computer scientist, who once said: "Computing is too important to be left to men". And she was right. This certainty comes from the search engines she developed and which researchers still use today, especially when applied to Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions.

That's why, on this day when we celebrate the existence of women, it wouldn't be fair not to mention these three pioneers who paved the way for other women to break paradigms and overcome barriers, exploring and making new discoveries.

MONTREAL, the present future.



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