Ada Lovelace the mother of Computer Programming?


On December 10, 2012 the Google Doodle for the day honored “Ada Lovelace” considered by many as the mother of Computer Programming. Born British on December 10, 1815 in London, United Kingdom and passed away in Marylebone, London, United Kingdom at the young age of only 36 she have left a big legacy behind for such a young woman.

Ada Lovelace

She were baptized as Augusta Ada Byron but commonly known as Ada Lovelace. Ada Lovelace was often ill, and during her childhood and she often experienced headaches that obscured her vision. In June 1829, she was paralyzed when she contracted measles, during this time she were subjected to bed rest for almost a year during this time she also experienced periods of disability. In 1831 she was able to walk with crutches.

In her early childhood Ada Lovelace showed interest in mathematics and analytics. Her mother’s obsession with rooting out any of the insanity of which she accused Lord Byron was one of the reasons that she was taught mathematics from an early age.

Ada Lovelace was privately schooled at home in science and mathematics by Mary Somerville, William King, William Frend. She was also taught mathematics by the famous mathematician and logician Augustus De Morgan her interest in mathematics dominated the majority of her adult life. In a letter to Lady Byron, De Morgan suggested that her daughter’s skill in mathematics could lead her to become “an original mathematical investigator, perhaps of first-rate eminence”.

Ada Lovelace developed a strong relationship with Mary Somerville, noted researcher and scientific author of the 19th century, who introduced her to Charles Babbage.

Ada Lovelace First computer program

In 1842 Charles Babbage was invited to give a seminar at the University of Turin about his analytical engine. Luigi Menabrea, a young Italian engineer, and future Prime Minister of Italy, wrote up Babbage’s lecture in French, and this transcript was subsequently published in the Bibliothèque Universelle de Genève in October 1842.

Charles Babbage, (26 December 1791 – 18 October 1871)


 was an English mathematician, philosopher, inventor and mechanical engineer who originated the concept of a programmable computer.Considered a “father of the computer”, Babbage is credited with inventing the first mechanical computer that eventually led to more complex designs.

Charles Babbage asked Ada Lovelace to translate Menabrea’s paper into English, subsequently requesting that she augment the notes she had added to the translation. Ada Lovelace spent most of a year doing this. These notes, which are more extensive than Menabrea’s paper, were then published in The Ladies’ Diary and Taylor’s Scientific Memoirs under “AAL”.

In 1953, over one hundred years after her death, Ada Lovelace interpretation on Babbage’s Analytical Engine were republished. The engine has now been recognized as an early model for a computer and Ada Lovelace interpretation as a description of a computer and software. This makes her one of the Mothers of the first Computer Software. She describes an algorithm for the analytical engine to compute Bernoulli numbers. It is considered the first algorithm ever specifically tailored for implementation on a computer, and for this reason Ada Lovelace is often cited as the first computer programmer. However the engine was not completed during Ada Lovelace lifetime.

  • The computer language Ada, created on behalf of the United States Department of Defense, was named after Ada Lovelace. The reference manual for the language was approved on 10 December 1980, and the Department of Defense Military Standard for the language, “MIL-STD-1815”, was given the number of the year of her birth. Since 1998, the British Computer Society has awarded a medal in her name and in 2008 initiated an annual competition for women students of computer science.
  • The village computer centre in the village of Porlock, near where Ada Lovelace lived, is named after her.
  • There is a building in the small town of Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire named “Ada Lovelace House”.
  • Now-defunct UK computer company International Computers Limited (now Fujitsu Siemens) had their main development centre at Lovelace Road in Bracknell. 51° 24′ 25″ N 0° 46′ 28″ W

Ada Lovelace Google Doodle

In honor of Ada Lovelace Google celebrated her legacy on December 10, 2012 with a Google Doodle devoted to Ada Lovelace. In the Google Doodle there is a mathematical formula written in a bubble just above the “G” in Google. There is also a drawing of a woman in the image, which looks a lot like Ada Lovelace. In the doodle there are also symbols of what was considered the first computers to modern day computers like  a laptop and Ipad or Tab.

With all the images and the words “Google” written in what looks like a lace type font, I personally think that Google have done a great job today, telling the world about Ada Lovelace and the legacy she left behind!

Source Wikipedia

Ada Lovelace