16 Famous Women in Tech Who Shaped the World

Sep 21, 2020 | PEOPLE & THINGS WE LOVE

Below, we pay homage to pioneers in technology, design and science whose contributions have shaped the world as we know it.
Famous Women in Tech - Grace Hopper

Famous Woman In Tech: Grace Hopper

Grace Brewster Murray Hopper was an American computer scientist and United States Navy rear admiral. One of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer, she was a pioneer of computer programming who invented one of the first linkers.

Famous Women in Tech - Gladys West

Famous Woman In Tech: Gladys West

Gladys West is largely hailed as the pioneer whose mathematical work led to the invention of the Global Positioning system (GPS).

Famous Women in Tech - Ada Lovelace

Famous Woman In Tech: Ada Lovelace

Ada Lovelace is considered to be the first computer programmer, an industry that has since transformed business, our lives and the world.

Famous Women in Tech - Beulah Louise Henry

Famous Woman In Tech: Beulah Louise Henry

She is known as Lady Edison for her prolific inventions, she also credited with more than 100 inventions including the vacuum ice cream freezer and a bobbin-free sewing machine.

Famous Women in Tech - Marie Van Brittan Brown

Famous Women in Tech: Marie Van Brittan Brown

Inventor of the first CCTV. In 1966 Brown filed a patent for a movable camera that could display images on a TV screen monitor of whoever was at the front door.

Famous Women in Tech - Rosalind Franklin

Famous Women in Tech: Rosalind Franklin

Rosalind Elsie Franklin was an English chemist and X-ray crystallographer whose work was central to the understanding of the molecular structures of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal, and graphite.

Famous Women in Tech - Emilie Du Chatele

Famous Women in Tech: Emilie Du Chatelet

French natural philosopher and mathematician Emilie Du Chatelet had complementary gifts: an ability to comprehend complex science,
and an ability to describe that science to the masses. Her advanced abilities in physics and mathematics made her especially able to write capably about Newton’s physics.

Famous Women in Tech - Katsuko Saruhashi

Famous Women in Tech: Katsuko Saruhashi

Katsuko Saruhashi was a champion of women’s rights and a pioneering defender of oceans. A geochemist who created tools that let her take some of the first measurements of carbon dioxide levels in seawater, she found evidence of the dangers of radioactive fallout and how far it can travel.

Famous Women in Tech - Radia Perlman

Famous Women in Tech: Radia Perlman

Radia’s invention of the algorithm behind the Spanning Tree Protocol (STP), was instrumental in making today’s internet possible.

Famous Women in Tech - Marie Curie

Famous Women in Tech – Marie Curie

The first woman to win a Nobel Prize, Marie Curie was also the first female professor at the University of Paris. As founder of the new science of radioactivity, her discoveries launched effective cures for cancer.

Famous Women in Tech - Carol Shaw

Famous Women in Tech: Carol Shaw

Shaw programmed one of the Atari’s best-known shooter games, River Raid, which was the first game that allowed the shooter to accelerate and slow down all over the screen.

Famous Women in Tech - Virginia Apgar

Famous Women in Tech: Virginia Apgar

Virginia Apgar was an American obstetrical anesthesiologist, best known as the inventor of the Apgar Score, a way to quickly assess the health of a newborn child immediately after birth in order to combat infant mortality. She climbed up the ranks of a male dominated medical industry, specializing in anesthetics, with a focus on the effects of these drugs on newborn babies and mothers.

Famous Women in Tech - Heddy Lamar

Famous Women in Tech: Heddy Lamarr

Lamarr was an Austrian-American actress, inventor and film producer, involved in 30 films over a 28-year acting career, who also co-invented an early version of frequency-hopping spread spectrum.

Famous Women in Tech - Stephanie Kwolek

Famous Women in Tech: Stephanie Kwolek

An American chemist who is known for inventing Kevlar. She discovered the first of a family of synthetic fibers of exceptional strength and stiffness: poly-paraphenylene terephthalamide.

Famous Women in Tech - Susan Kare

Famous Women in Tech: Susan Kare

American artist and graphic designer best known for her interface elements and typeface contributions to the first Apple Macintosh from 1983 to 1986. Kare created the typeface Chicago, used in the first four generations of the iPod.

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Post Contributors

Jaclyn Hawtin

Jaclyn Hawtin

Senior Data Architect

Over a decade of experience in product management, devops, startups, and agile methodologies. Track record of simplifying complex technical processes for cross-functional teams. Proficient in user centered design, UX, IX, UI, IA, user research and data analytics for responsive web, mobile and tablet applications. Incredibly adaptable, fluent with both people and machines.

Mani O'Brien

Mani O'Brien

Conversion optimization manager

Mani is a senior marketing manager with roots in storytelling. She nerds out on everything data, technology, human behavior and design. Chat with her about UX/UI, marketing funnels, conversion and goal tracking, marketing experimentation and astrology (she’s a Virgo Sun, Aries Rising).

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