Software Development

International Women’s Day 2024: Tech Industry Luminaries

Mar 08, 20244 min readBY Yozu International Women'S Day 2024

By Yozu

On March 8th, the world comes together to celebrate the achievements and contributions of women across various fields. 

International Women’s Day allows us to reflect on the software development industry, where women have played a significant role in shaping that landscape, making groundbreaking discoveries, and driving innovation.

Pioneering Women in Computing

Ada Lovelace – Often referred to as the world’s first computer programmer, Ada Lovelace made remarkable contributions to the development of Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine in the mid-19th century. 

She wrote detailed notes and instructions for the machine, effectively creating the first algorithm designed to be processed by a machine. Her work laid the foundation for modern computer programming.

Grace Hopper – A Pioneer in Programming Languages, Grace Hopper was instrumental in the development of COBOL (Common Business-Oriented Language), one of the earliest high-level frameworks. 

Her work in creating a more accessible and English-like programming language made it possible for a broader range of people to develop software applications.

Jean Bartik and the ENIAC Team: During World War II, Jean Bartik and a team of female mathematicians programmed the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer (ENIAC), one of the first general-purpose electronic computers.

Their contributions were vital to the success of this groundbreaking machine.

International Women'S Day 2024
International Women’s Day 2024

Modern-Day Innovations

Radia Perlman – The “Mother of the Internet”- Radia Perlman’s work in the development of the Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) significantly contributed to the stability and scalability of computer networks.

Her innovations in network technology have had a lasting impact on the internet infrastructure we use today.

Margaret Hamilton – Margaret Hamilton led the team that developed the software for NASA’s Apollo missions to the moon. Her work ensured the safe execution of critical functions and is often credited with saving the Apollo 11 mission from an abort during the lunar landing.

Frances Allen – Allen pioneered compiler optimisation techniques, which significantly improved the efficiency and performance of computer programs. Her work earned her the prestigious Turing Award in 2006, making her the first female recipient of the award.

Inclusive Innovations

While the contributions of these remarkable women have been significant, it is essential to acknowledge that gender diversity in the software development industry has not always been equal.

The industry has been traditionally male-dominated, however efforts are being made to promote inclusivity and diversity through dedicated programmes, training and career guidance offered from the academic stages of a potential STEM-related career.

Promoting Gender Equality in Software Development

What can the tech industry do to support a fairer balance of opportunities in the workplace?

Encouraging Girls in Tech: Initiatives that inspire and educate girls and young women in STEM fields are crucial. Programs, workshops, and mentorship opportunities can help foster interest and build confidence among future female software developers.

Inclusive Workplaces: Software development companies should actively promote diversity and inclusivity in their workplaces. Creating an environment where all employees feel valued and have equal opportunities is vital for the industry’s growth and innovation.

Recognising Achievements: Highlighting the achievements of women in software development and acknowledging their contributions helps raise awareness and encourages more women to pursue careers in the field.


As we celebrate International Women’s Day, it is essential to recognise the significant impact that women have had on the software development industry.

From the earliest days of computing to the modern era of technology, women have made invaluable contributions, pushing the industry forward.

By promoting gender equality and fostering inclusivity, we can ensure that women continue to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of software development.