Google Doodle Celebrates Ada Lovelace’s Birthday

Google celebrates the amazing accomplishments of Augusta Ada King, the Countess of Lovelace, also known as ‘Ada Lovelace.’

Celebrating 197th birthday of the “enchantress of numbers”, the searching giant has doodled the evolution of computers from the days of an analytical engine to the present devices. Photo: Google

Google Doodle highlights the occasion of Ada Lovelace, 197th birthday, the famous mathematician and daughter of poet Lord Byron.

“Visibility is also the reason why we launched the Women Techmakers series on GDL, to help shine a light on the roles and contributions of the many talented technical women in our industry today,” the company explained in its blog.

“We hope our series will complement other efforts to raise the profile of women, such as the new AOL/PBS supported website and documentary Makers.com or the work of Academy Award-winning actress Geena Davis on SeeJane to improve gender balance and reduce stereotypes in childrens’ television globally.”

The statement also reads: “We hope today’s doodle inspires people to find out more about Ada, and about the contributions made by women in general to science and technology.”

Today marks the birthday of Countess of Lovelace (1815-1852) — also known as  Ada Lovelace – a computer pioneer who was a success story a century before the computer revolution got underway in earnest.

Ada is often called the first computer programmer, however, this is dumbing-down of her role in history of computing.

Lovelace showed her high interest in mathematical studies when being a child and was taught by her mother, Annabella, who was also talented in this subject.

According to Charles Babbage, who is now considered to be a forerunner of the modern computer, the girl demonstrated her gift for mathematics and was described by him as ‘the enchantress of numbers’.

As The Guardian reports, Lovelace was later introduced to him by another famous female scientist, the mathematician Mary Somerville, who mentored Ada during her relatively short life.

The computer frontrunner was impressed by Ada’s mathematical skills and offered her to make a translation of a small piece in Italian written by Luigi Menabrea describing Babbage’s ‘analytical engine’, in order to publish it in England.

Lovelace’s notes included the first algorithm which described how a machine works, while she also assured everybody that in future it will be able to create graphics and complex music.

“Supposing, for instance, that the fundamental relations of pitched sounds in the science of harmony and of musical composition were susceptible of such expression and adaptations, the engine might compose elaborate and scientific pieces of music of any degree of complexity or extent,” she wrote at the time.

Born in 1815, she had no relationship with her father, famous romantic poet Lord Byron, who died when she was eight. In 1835, the woman married William King and died in 1852 at the age of 36 of uterine cancer.

The Hindu Business Line writes that even though various scholars are divided over her contribution to early computing, a computer language, Ada, is named after the great mathematician. A medal is also awarded in her name by the British Computer Society.

Since her death several biographies of Ada have been written, and biographer Walter Isaacson has turned his attention to Ada as part of his next book.

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