Business Super Hero of the Month: Ada Lovelace

22 Oct 2015

When someone says to you describe a computer programmer, not many people would describe a glamorous and prim Victorian countess, yet what so many don’t realize is that the first ever computer programmer was just that.

Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace, was an English mathematician who spent much of her career working closely on Charlie Babbage’s early mechanical general purpose machine, more commonly known as the Analytical Engine. She is regarded as the first computer programmer, as her notes and work from this time created the first algorithm to be carried out by any machine. In publishing these notes, she holds the enviable place in history as having written the first published computer program. Pretty cool right?

As the daughter of poet Lord Byron, Ada became recognised as the poetical scientist, using her logic and intelligence to create some of the early stages of the journey of the computer. But Ada did more than that, she looked past the machine and searched for answers on how individuals and society relate to technology as a collaborative tool. In other words Ada saw what computers could bring to the human race a hundred years before Alan Turing was building the Bombe or Colossus computers.

Ada’s life was taken far too young, she died at only 36, with much of her work still incomplete. However her legacy lives on. She has a whole computer language called “Ada,” created on behalf of the United States Department of Defense, named after her. There is now even an “Ada Lovelace Day” which aims to promote and raise awareness of women in science, technology, engineering and maths.

For many of the team at OpenCRM, Ada is both a business and personal hero. She is a true example of a woman who was not ashamed of her intellect and passion for maths and science, with her work still being celebrated today. She was also someone who, not only grasped the inner workings of the most advanced technology of her age, but also was able to think creatively about how it could be applied in the real world.

If Ada Lovelace’s life teaches us one thing it is that people shouldn’t give up on what they are passionate about, they should be proud of what they believe and really give it their all. You never know, we might be talking about you in 100 years.

If you’d like to find out more about the history of women in tech, why not check out our article on exactly that.

The information in the post was primarily taken from the website of the Ada Lovelace Day., (2015). Who was Ada? | Ada Lovelace Day. [online] Available at: [Accessed 8 Oct. 2015].