Women in computer history and free software

The first week we focused on introducing ourselves, getting to know the expectation, skills and dreams of the women. During the second week we started the introduction of this new world of computers.

We wanted to introduce computers by telling their history, specifically the role of women in it, including the one of black Africans. Women have invisible stories, from being the human computers to being the first ones to program them. So we talked about Ada Lovelace, Grace Hopper to the recently deceased Katherine Johnson, among others.

Once we enter in this new world hand in hand with some amazing women, we started to talk about hardware, we opened a computer, saw its insides, touched it, there is no magic inside these metal, plastic boxes, is just that, hardware, so we started to put names to each hardware component.

From the hardware we moved to the software, what is it but specially we emphasized what is the meaning of free software, what do we mean by free and why it’s important to be able to access to the code. Technological sovereignty is an opportunity that only free software offers us and transmitting it is the responsibility we have assigned ourselves.