A lot of people refer to Ada Lovelace as the First Female Coder. It is as true as it is false. Ada is the very first person that we would recognise as a fellow coder today - she just happened to be a woman. She should be referred to as The First Coder, and not just The First Female Coder.

Ada Lovelace

Ada was born in 1815, and as a young woman, she was more interested in (and excelled at) Mathematics than in doing Needlepoint fire-screens, slippers, and anti-maccassars. The latter was an acceptable pass-time for a well-brought up young Victorian lady, the former certainly not.

Thanks to Adas uncoventional parents, she could persue her interest in Mathematics. It was only when she met Charles Babbage that her Mathematics would turn her into a Coder, thanks to Charles' Analytical Engine.

The Analytical Engine was the first computer (even though it didn't physically exist), and Ada its first operator.

Of the Analytical Engine, Ada said:
"It can do whatever we know how to order it to perform."

The next time someone says that girls can't code, tell them that not only can girls code, a girl was the first to code, and for a computer that existed solely on paper.

  Note G

Ada's diagram from "note G", the first published computer algorithm. (A set of instructions to calculate Bernoulli's Numbers, written for Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine.)

Click below to learn quick facts about Ada, Charles Babbage, and the Analytical Engine.

For in-depth information, follow the links below to visit the respective Wikipedia pages.

Ada Lovelace Charles Babbage Analytical Engine