Many may not know her name but Ada Lovelace (Augusta Ada Byron) wrote what is considered to be the worlds very first computer program. The algorithm was written in 1842 and in 1953, over a 100 years after her death, Ada’s notes on Babbage’s Analytical Engine were republished, recognizing her notes as a description of a computer and software.
She refereed to herself as a poetical scientist and an Analyst & Metapysician, and considering that she is the only legitimate child of the famous poet Lord Byron that doesn’t seem quite so odd. However her love for maths grew out of her mothers attempt to keep her daughter away from developing what her mother, Anne Isabelle Byron, called her fathers insanity.
But no matter how hard her mother tried, nor how much she excelled at all things in mathematics she still remained attached to her father, even though he left her and her mother shortly after her birth and died when she was only eight years old. She was even buried next to him in 1852 upon her request.
Ada died young, at the age of 36 (10.12.1815-27.11.1852) from cancer, but her achievements were great and to honour her today is her day: the Ada Lovelace day!
Founded by journalist Suw Charman-Anderson this day aims to raise the profile of women in science, technology, engineering and maths by encouraging people around the world to talk about the women whose work they admire and to be inspired by their success.
The Analytical Engine weaves algebraic patterns, just as the Jacquard loom weaves flowers and leaves. – Ada Lovelace