Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ada Lovelace Day!

Hey folks, it's Ada Lovelace Day again! (Their website seems to be down at the moment, Google has a cached version).
Ada Lovelace Day is a day to celebrate and promote the achievements of women in science and technology, by writing a blog post about a woman working in a scientific or techie field you find inspirational.

So, I'd like to talk about Kate Ho. Kate is originally a computer scientist, and is currently a PhD student working in the sociology of computer systems, in between starting up companies and enterprises.

Specifically, Kate studies "requirements engineering", the process of figuring out what an organisation really *wants* from their computer systems, and how to build the system to provide this. This matches Kate's vision for computer science pretty well -- not just technology for technology's sake, but technology fitted to people's needs, making a real difference to how they get things done.

Kate's other main passion is entrepreneuring. She is constantly looking for new business opportunities, and while I've known her has usually been involved in at least 3 start-ups at any given moment. Now that her thesis is submitted, she has had the chance to move into entrepreneuring full-time and has started Interface3, a company specialising in developing multi-touch surface systems.
Again, her aim in this is to find new applications for technology, to find new ways in which it can improve people's lives, and to make them a reality. I think this is what she is really passionate about -- trying to work out ways in which technology can change the world.

She does lots of other awesome stuff too -- she set up Edinburgh University's Hoppers group, and helps organise Edinburgh's Girl Geek dinners, not to mention running Scottish Women's Rugby. She also knits!

So, Kate -- social entrepreneur, innovator, geek, knitter!

Happy Ada Lovelace day, everyone!

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