Top Female Programmers Throughout History

Top Female Programmers Throughout History

Since the invention of computers, women have already proven themselves to be excellent programmers. It is important that young minds would have some people that they can look up to and affirm them that coding is for everyone – for the rich or poor, for both men and women, and for young and old. Here are the top 5 female programmers who have made their mark in our history.


Ada Lovelace

Many consider Ada Lovelace as the world’s first programmer. Born into an educated home with a poetic genius father, Ada also has created her own poetry through mathematics. With the aid of her mentor, Charles Babbage, she was able to create an article about an analytical machine and detailed notes on how it would work. Her work is considered as the first algorithm ever made thus making her the world’s first programmer.


Margaret Hamilton

Programmers were required to create a code for the Apollo Guide Computer for the Apollo 11 mission. Hamilton was the one who led the project as a director of software engineering. It was in 2016 when the former president, Barack Obama awarded her for leading the development of software aiding NASA’s Apollo Moon missions. People admire her not only for her intelligence but for her willingness to learn and create without having much assistance.


Grace Hopper

Dubbed as the ‘First Lady of Software’, Hopper helped in programming computers that would allow NASA to communicate with Apollo astronauts. Her work included the first compiler for a computer language to be translated to another. Her contributions were not only limited to spacecraft, but she also was able to create the first independent language which would later evolve into COBOL.


The ENIAC Programmers

Six talented women were able to program the first digital computer for the US Army without any books or mentor to teach them. Jean Bartik, Betty Holberton, Kathleen Antonelli, Marlyn Meltzer, Frances Spence, and Ruth Teitelbaum spent over two decades of their life researching, learning, testing, and recording their work. Their project was a secret World War II project doing calculus in just a matter of seconds. While they may not receive honors for their work in the past, they are now being recognized for the honor they deserve.


Joan Clarke

Known for her life-saving work during the World War II, Clarke helped Alan Turing in decoding German Enigma Ciphers. Her job to break ciphers in real time which is nerve-wracking as their lives and safety depended on it. Her team built project computers to decipher German codes as fast as possible.


There are more brilliant women who excelled in the world of programming not only in modern times but also in the past.

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