Archive for the 'meta' category

The Difference Engine

Feb 07 2011 Published by under meta

Hi, my name is FCS, aka Female Computer Scientist. The kind folks here at Scientopia have invited me to blog with them, and being a long time fan of most everyone here I have decided to accept. It was  a delightful surprise to receive the invitation.

I am planning to keep my other blog active and post here on an occasional (hopefully weekly) basis. Right now life is rather hectic, but hopefully in the next few months a tide of calmness will come and a lovely, dichotomous blogging pattern shall emerge.

You may wonder what "The Difference Engine" means. It is often credited to be the first computer, and I guess as far as the western world is concerned that's true. It was conceived by Charles Babbage and improved upon and first "programmed" by Lady Ada Lovelace. Babbage is referred to pretty much everywhere as the "Father of Computing". Well, I think if that's the case then Ada is most certainly its mother. She is, fortunately, well-honored in computing history, and each year the world celebrates Ada Lovelave day, where we all honor our favorite female computer scientists.

Since Ada's time things have dramatically improved for women, people of color, and people with disabilities who want to study and work in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), but in my observation we still have a ways to go. So that's the other part of the title of "The Difference Engine" - I'd like to help change the image and face of computing*.

I'm still considering the best way of doing this, but at the very least I hope to do some general CS education and outreach.

(*) Don't worry, this will not become a Computer Vision blog. Or will it? Mu ha ha...

16 responses so far