International Women’s Day: Influential women in web technology and science

This guest post is by Arne Hulstein, who works with Twitter analytics company Peerreach. 

Today is International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate women and the effect they have on our society. At Peerreach we analyse over 400 million tweets per day to find out who your audience is and in what field your influences lie. So, specially for Finding Ada, I decided to check up on the ten most influential women worldwide on Twitter in the fields of web technology and science, women who inspire others in their field.

The top 10 women in web technology worldwide

Kara Swisher – Co-Executive editor, AllThingsD
Marissa Mayer – Yahoo!
Caterina Fake – Founder, Findery. Cofounder of Flickr and Hunch
Sarah Lacy -Reporter/author in Silicon Valley
Danah Boyd – Senior Researcher at Microsoft Research
Alexia Tsotsis – Co-Editor at TechCrunch
Esther Dyson – Chairman of EDventure Holdings
Veronica Belmont – Host of @Tekzilla on @Revision3 and The @SwordandLaser
Liz Gannes – Writes for AllThingsD
Gina Trapani – @ThinkUp & @todotxt. Started @Lifehacker

The top 10 women in science worldwide

Dr. Kiki Sanford –  PhD Neurophysiology, independent Science media and journalism
Alice Bell – Academic and writer. Interested in science in society
Rebecca Skloot – Author of #1 NYTimes Bestseller IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA 
Emily Lakdawalla – Planetary Society blogger
Maria Popova – Editor of @brainpickings & @explorer
Maggie Koerth-Baker – Science editor at @BoingBoing
Joanne Manaster – Biology lecturer, video science book reviewer
Deborah Blum – Chemistry Geek, book author, blogger, journalist, professor
Hannah Waters – Smithsonian @OceanPortal producer, @SciAm blogger, writer
Karen James – Scientist @mdibl, co-founder & director @beagleproject

We have been monitoring the #womensday hashtag today and it is great to see that, even though two thirds of all tweets are by women, men are also tweeting. This is a good step towards the gender equality that is the theme of International Women’s Day 2013. undergoing rescue

Unfortunately, the server hosting the FindingAda blog got badly attacked by spammers over Christmas and my hosting company ended up suspending the account. They would only unsuspend it for short periods so that we could rescue the contents of the server. Sadly, I don’t have the skills to de-spam-ify a hacked account and UKHost4U didn’t have a backup, so the only option that we had was to nuke the whole installation from orbit.

The results of this are that the redirects that pointed at the Evectors-created directory were also lost (that bit of info slipped through the net), although the data hasn’t been lost as it was hosted on Rackspace… I just need to fiddle with some redirects.

The long and the short of it is that the blog has been rescued and re-installed on WPEngine, a secure WP host, where it should be safe. The directory is still on Rackspace, and I’m hoping that soon I have the info I need to hook that back up with the domain. The domain itself is being shifted over to Gandi so that I can manage it a bit more easily, and independently of any hosting.

Once this episode is sorted, I can get back to organising ALD2012!

Ada Lovelace Day: Events and new website

With less than a month to go now until Ada Lovelace Day on 7th October, we are working hard on getting the new website up and running. I know this is the third year in a row that we’ve done stuff to the website, but this time we’re upping the ante and it will be well worth it! I’m very excited at what we’ve got in store for you and can’t wait for it to go live!

In the meantime, you should grab tickets to the Ada Lovelace Day events, which we are holding an association with BCSWomen.

Ada Lovelace Day Live!
Join Helen Arney, Maggie Philbin, Gia Milinovich, Helen Keen, Kate SmurthwaiteDr Sue Black, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, and other women from science and tech for an entertaining evening of geekery, comedy and song on Ada Lovelace Day. Celebrating the achievements of women in STEM, Ada Lovelace Day brings together people from around the world to talk about the women who inspire them.

Date: Friday 7 October 2011, 6pm – 10pm
Venue: BCS, 1st Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London, WC2E 7HA
Cost: £12 plus VAT

Ada Lovelace Day Android Extravaganza
This one-day Android development workshop will introduce AppInventor and the basics of mobile development. It’ll be fun and interactive – no programming experience necessary. Bring your own laptop and an Android phone if you have one. Tea and coffee will be provided, but not lunch so either bring a packed lunch or be prepared to pop out for a sandwich.

Date: Friday 7 October 2011, 10am – 5pm
Venue: BCS, 1st Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London, WC2E 7HA
Cost: £5 plus VAT

Places at both events are limited, so you should book your tickets now to prevent disappointment! Please note that both events are open to all genders.

There are also other events going on that you might be interested in:

Great Minds on Innovation – Ada Lovelace Day
element14, the leading online community for Electronic Engineers, will support the aims of Ada Lovelace Day on the 7th of October 2011 by hosting a virtual series of talks by leading technologists and innovators across different countries. Ada Lovelace Day is an international day of celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Start Time: 10/7/11 12:00 AM IST
End Time: 10/8/11 11:59 AM IST
Location: Worldwide

Find out more on the element14 website.

Tampere University of Applied Sciences dedicates open learning space to Ada
The Tampere University of Applied Sciences, School of Art, Music and Media, in Tampere, Finland is creating a new open learning space “where teams can meet, work and showcasetheir projects”. Mr Cai Melakoski emailed to let me know that “The space is almost finished. The name will be Ada, because here we use coding for the purposes Ada dreamed about. We had not decided when to formally open the space, but when I noticed Ada Lovelace Day will this year be October 7 I decided that is the date of the event.”

The university has supported Ada Lovelace Day both years it has run, so I’m delighted that they are continuing the good work and honouring Ada in this way!

A new beginning
This year we have expanded Ada Lovelace Day to embrace all the STEM disciplines, ie science, technology, engineering and maths, so there are plenty of inspirational women to choose from. We won’t be having a pledge per se, rather we are putting together a directory of tech heroines so that we can more easily curate related stories. That’s all part of the new website which is so very nearly ready to go!

What’s especially exciting to me, though, is that this year, Ada Lovelace Day itself has become less of a culmination and more of a new beginning. I want to make a site that provides women in STEM with year-round support, access to resources and a fabulous source of inspiration. The changes you’ll see in the run-up to 7 October are just a fraction of the goodies we have in store for you.

So put 7 October in your diary and stay tuned for more news!

Open Tech 2010 call for participation

Open Tech 2010 is now open for business. If you’re a woman in tech, you should consider submitting an idea for a session as the schedule is still open, but get in quick as closing date is 30th June!

Open Tech 2010
sponsored by

Saturday 11th Septmber
ULU, Malet Street, London, WC1E 7HY

Tickets only £5
Students Free Entry

40 talks across 3 tracks over 7 hours, on crowds, earthquakes and battlefronts, which hope to challenge, inspire or talk about something that makes you want to get involved. OpenTech 2010 includes earthquakes of the metaphorical and physical kind, ForTheWin, enlightenment and the environment, and with plenty of time to talk in the bar after sessions which challenge, inspire or talk about something that makes you want to help how you can. The last two times we have sold out in advance, so you are strongly advised to pre-register.

This year’s line up features…
* Another 500 years of Enlightenment from Bill Thompson
* Tales from the Battlefront from No2ID
* For the Win: Game-space and Public Engagement
* Just Do It: The Documentary from Director Emily James
* Climate Change: how screwed are we? from Gavin Starks
* 10:10 global from Technical Director Robin Houston
* Crowdsourcing Data Context from Hadley Beeman
* OpenGeoScience: not just earthquakes
* Keeping the web open – Mozilla Drumbeat
* Lessons and futures from
* Today’s Guardian
* Who’s lobbying?
* and much much more besides

The full schedule is at

Tickets are £5, paid for on the door; but you should pre-register yours online at

Want to help out?
OpenTech is organised by volunteers and we are now looking for volunteers to help out on the day. In return for free early entry and our eternal gratitude, we’re in need of a few people to show up a bit earlier and help us set the venue up, and a few people to help with the audio recordings.

If you’re interested, or have random other questions, email us on

One thing we’re doing this year is giving everyone related to OpenTech the chance to post their projects on a page, and say what help they need. Offline or on, whether you’re after tech people or just more helpers, you can ask the OpenTech community to help out what matters to you:

Final programme may be subject to alteration. OpenTech is a not for profit event open to everyone so please help spread the word online and offline. Thanks for reading!

ALD10 is a part of European eSkills Week

Ada Lovelace Day is also a part of the European Commission’s eSkills Week, a series of events across Europe seeking to ” highlight the growing demand for skilled ICT users and professionals to drive a competitive and innovative Europe”. Although the week itself was at the beginning of March, there are still activities going on through April. Take a look at their News and Events page for more, or follow them on Twitter, or via their blog or podcast.