From Ada to Aga – Thank You Women of Technology
Throughout my career in business communications, I’ve found myself drawn to leveraging new technologies. From early e-mail newsletters to intranets, web sites to virtual worlds, and blogs to microblogs, there’s always something new around the corner to keep things interesting.
And, for the past eight years I’ve had the opportunity to expand my skills and apply these new technologies while working for a company that is a leading technology provider – Dell Inc.
In spite of this, and much to the amusement of my truly technically savvy brother that I call when I don’t know the difference in an appliance and a server, I don’t consider myself a true woman of technology. To me, that title is reserved more for those who dig into the code, understand the backend and engineer the software and hardware.
Today is a day set aside to honor some of those women. Ada Lovelace Day is an international day of blogging to draw attention to women excelling in technology. The daughter of Lord Byron, Ada made her own way and her own name for herself as the first computer programmer (not the first female programmer, but the first programmer) and therefore the founder of scientific computing.
So, on this day for honoring women in technology, I’d like to call out a few outstanding women in technology that I respect and have had the priviledge to work with at Dell:
Aga Webb – IT Director and CIO for the Asia-Pacific region
I’ve not worked directly with Aga, but have been involved in projects that gave me an opportunity to be in meeting discussions with her. I’ve always been impressed with her knowledge, her command of a situation and her common sense when facing technical quandries.
Kathy Kitayama – Director, Global Online Content Operations
Kathy leads a worldwide team of developers that make miracles happen every day on Dell.com. That’s no small feat for a web site that over the last four quarters had half a billion visitors; but hey, she does have B.A. in Applied Mathematics from Harvard!
Joi Chevalier – Global Online eBusiness Sr. Consultant
Joi got her undergraduate degree in English at Oxford, but she’s way better than I am at understanding the the technicalities of technology. Maybe it’s because of that masters from The University of Texas that combined literature and technology.
Dodie Stillman – eBusiness Consultant
Dodie is the person I refer to as my right arm. She’s a web developer (part of Kathy’s team), an accessibility expert, and often the saver of my butt. And still she finds time to raise two cool kids and bike in nearly every ride that comes around Central Texas.
Without women like these in technolgy today and pioneers like Ada Lovelace, who foresaw the capability of computers to go beyond mere calculating or number-crunching, who knows where we might not be today. Thank you ladies!
Other Women in Technology:
- ComputerWeekly’s Ada Lovelace Day List
- Make Magazine’s List
- The Guardian profiles Jane McGonigal
- Ada Lovelace Day Collection of blog posts