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Laura Sydell. Ramin Rahimian for hide caption. This story is part of our series, The Changing Lives of Women. Sarah Allen has been the only woman on a team of computer programmers a few times in the more than two decades she has worked in the field. Most notably, she led the team - as the lone female programmer - that created Flash video, the dominant technology for streaming video on the Web.

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Her mom was one of the first women to sell the Apple IIand she brought one home. Allen read the manual and taught herself to write simple programs. She says it seemed like magic to her: "I could wave my hands, and I could create this pattern in the machine, and then this thing exists that didn't exist before.

Allen graduated from Brown University in with a degree in computer science. A few years back, Allen starting going to workshops to learn a hot Web application framework called Ruby on Rails. Twitter was developed with it.

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Allen got really frustrated when she noticed that out of people, only six were women. Allen and a friend started their own workshops; they were on weekends and had child care. She posted to the San Francisco Women on the Web, and in less than 24 hours, we had a waiting list, and we've really proven that demand is not a problem," she says. Since they began inthe workshops - they call them RailsBridge - have drawn thousands of women, among them Lillie Chilen.

Blazing The Trail For Female Programmers

Chilen was an art history and opera major in college. A lot of programming workshops felt uncomfortable. The RailsBridge workshops felt different.

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Army hide caption. Chilen's next career move came from the workshop, where she met a woman who hired her as a programmer. Now, Allen is also working with minority groups such as Black Founders to teach more people Ruby on Rails.

How "computer girls" gave way to tech bros

It's large and dark. There are two women next to it in bright dresses moving some electrical cords.

Jul 16,   Female CEO Doesn't Want Women Working For Her Get RIPPED & Gain ENERGY with Coca Tea Nord VPN Get 75off a 3 year plan of NordVPN. The deal comes down to only $ per. May 16,   Female programmers were once the wave of the future. (Cosmopolitan) Employers began comparing programming less to clerical work and more to masculine activities like playing chess. Ad campaigns criticized women as gossiping, time-wasting, and Josh O'Connor. The people who cite sociological explanations doubtless make fair points, but I'm going to horrify people by suggesting that it perhaps mostly comes down to biology. Make no mistake: there are many excellent female programmers. It is not the case.

Allen says the number of women who major in computer science has actually been going down. She hopes that making women in the field more visible to each other will help young women see that there is a path for them in what is one of the fastest growing professions in the world. The audio of this story, as did a previous Web version, refers to Ruby on Rails as a programming language.

It is actually a Web application framework. Accessibility links Skip to main content Keyboard shortcuts for audio player. Shop.

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Blazing Cloud's Sarah Allen hopes that making women in the field more visible to each other will help young women see a path for themselves in this fast-growing profession. The Changing Lives Of Women. Facebook Twitter Flipboard Email.

April 29, AM ET. At the demonstration, ENIAC did the trajectory calculation in 20 seconds seconds less than it would take the actual shell to reach its target.

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There they met Navy Reservist Grace Hopper. Hopper was looking for a way to make it easier to program computers with instructions. Entering reams of numbers was complicated and not very intuitive.

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She discovered a method of programming a computer with words instead of numbers, and in created a programming language that basically allowed operators to give the computer commands in English. COBOL is still widely used today, especially by banks and governments. It runs on virtually any platform and is very adept with numbers. Hopper told the magazine. But things were already changing.

Why are there so few female programmers?

Programming was being recognized as intellectually strenuous, and salaries were rising significantly. More men became interested in it and sought to increase their own prestige, according to historian Nathan Ensmenger.

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They formed professional organizations, sought stricter requirements to enter the field, and discouraged the hiring of women. Employers began comparing programming less to clerical work and more to masculine activities like playing chess. Ad campaigns criticized women as gossiping, time-wasting, and error-prone.

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Hiring mangers began administering aptitude and personality profile tests that were biased toward men. One of they key takeaways of the personality tests was the best programmers were antisocial, and that that was a male trait.

Oct 06,   The Forgotten Female Programmers Who Created Modern Tech: All Tech Considered The Innovators, Walter Isaacson's new book, tells the stories of the people who created modern computers. Women, who. Apr 29,   Blazing The Trail For Female Programmers: All Tech Considered Only about 20 percent of all computer programmers are women, but one pioneering CEO is trying to change that. Blazing Cloud's Sarah. I think the reason you don't see many female developers (coming out of the US) is the same reason you don't see many world-class female rock guitarists. Hardcore guitarists and Hardcore hackers share one trait - they both tend to have spent thousands of hours hacking on their instrument of choice as teens.

By the time we entered the personal computer age in the s, the stereotype of the programmer as antisocial super-nerd was set, aided by the rise of wonder boys like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. And since you could play video games on early personal computers, advertisers marketed them primarily to men and boys even though girls liked them, too.

Even so, families were far more likely to buy computers for boys than girls, according to research by Jane Margolis at Carnegie Mellon University.

And since college admissions officers expected computer science applicants to have experience with home computers, women were less likely to be accepted. Admissions also relied on the stereotype of programmer as male nerd, says Virginia Tech professor Janet Abbate.

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