I can’t even imagine what it must have felt like to be a woman working in IT in 1960s. Great amount of prejudice, underrepresentation, pushback, judgement or any other form of sexism are still extremely pressing issues nowadays not only in IT and STEM fields but in any working environment in general. And although the article only subtly touches the gender related struggles of Hamilton’s experience and mostly advocates for retrospective recognition of her great achievements, it still strikes me of how far we have come and how far we still have to go regarding this matter.
After finishing the article, I felt a strong sense of admiration for Hamilton. Her story is very similar to thousands of other women who had to get out of the rigid boxes that society put them in. It captures the struggles they, equally qualified employees, had to go through while their male colleagues did not. And how much less space they had for creating any mistakes. Let’s say Hamilton was male. Would they have still considered the code she wanted to add as unnecessary?
What is more, Hamilton achieved a breakthrough in a field that did not even exist at the time – she succeeded in it before they managed to declare it a male dominated industry that she would have no place in. And the fact that her, and probably many other women helped set foundations to software as we know it today, puts the whole “IT is a man’s world” argument into question.