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The role of women in the history of computing

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1 Author(s)
Currie Little, J. ; Towson Univ., Baltimore, MD, USA

Long before the electronic computing era, women were already a part of the information processing industry. For the first fifty years of information processing, women had an important role to play-from the women data entry operators of the early 1900s to the six women programmers of ENIAC in the 1940s and the scientific computation women computists of the 1950s. Sometimes an extraordinary partnership occurred, with women an integral part of a team. Sometimes a stroke of fate placed a woman at the right place at the right time to be a part of computing history. The paper provides a personal overview of the role of women in the history of information processing and computing, then gives a perspective on the workplace issues of supply and demand that continue to affect that role. Concern is expressed about the future role of women in computing and the sciences, with suggestions for consideration of new ways to approach the shortfall

Published in:

Technology and Society, 1999. Women and Technology: Historical, Societal, and Professional Perspectives. Proceedings. 1999 International Symposium on

Date of Conference:

29-31 Jul 1999