Meet Ada Lovelace

It'sssssss Tuesday, We Can Zone, and that means we're bringing you the second post in our Meet ____ series! In case you've forgotten since last week, this series is all about meeting cool people in STEM. For the next few weeks, our focus is going to be on figures from the computing world. This week, the person you get to meet is very near and dear to our hearts, as she was one of the earliest women in tech! Meet Ada Lovelace, the "first computer programmer." 

Ada was a friend of Charles Babbage, who you all got to meet last week, and was integral to taking his work to the next level. After building the Difference Engine, Charles went on to build the Analytical Engine, which was meant to be more of a general mechanical computation device. Ada realized that the machine had the potential to do things way bigger than just solving math problems, and she told Charles so! In the quest to show what the machine could do, she wrote the very first algorithm. What's an algorithm, you ask? It's simple! An algorithm is a chain of actions that follow each other, ending in some task being accomplished. If you've ever followed along on one of our Scratch tutorials, you've written an algorithm! For example, last week we wrote an algorithm to tell Sprite the cat how to follow along with our mouse movements - check it out here.  

So why's that important? Well, algorithms are one of the foundations of computer programming - so Ada really set the tone for years of innovation and building to come with her work! We think that's pretty awesome. Hopefully you enjoyed meeting her, and we encourage you to go out and learn more, and write some algorithms of your own! Or, to simplify things, just check back in here every Thursday, and we'll help you out with a handy dandy tutorial :) Before you know it, you'll be experts! 

That's all for today, folks - we'll be back tomorrow with some links we're loving. See you all soon! 

 

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