Sometimes, we take the computing power that we have at our disposal for granted. Millions of calculations are done before we even realize it and before we know it, we have our desired results. We can’t even begin to comprehend the complexities involved in the calculations a computer does, let alone do them effectively.
But the first programmers did exactly that. They were called “computers”, and their job was to manually perform calculations of physical activities. Back in the days of world war 2, the American Army hired 80 “computers” to calculate ballistic trajectories. Determining this involved solving complex differential equations. With the use of a calculator, a human computer could determine one trajectory of a ballistic, say a bullet, in 40 – 50 hours.
Today’s TV often baffles me –
On your left, you have AOL’s David Shing, who handles media and marketing at AOL. He’s a vastly experienced marketing guy, who has been in leadership positions at various corporations. Your typical LinkedIn all star. And then, on your right, you have Sir Tim Berners Lee, OM, KBE, FRS, FREng, FRSA, DFBCS, an English computer scientist, best known as the inventor of the World Wide Web, or, web developer, as this media channel put so succinctly. There’s a good chance that Tim Berners Lee’s LinkedIn profile, if he had one, wouldn’t begin to match how impressive David’s looks.
Without the great programmer’s achievements, Sir Tim Berners-Lee might as well just be a web developer. Now, this is an extreme case, where the invention his invention is so profound and so widely credited, that we can see the fallacy in calling someone like Time Berners-Lee just a web developer. But what about other developers? Sure, they might not have invented the internet, but they too are really, really good. How can you begin to showcase a developer’s work using an online profile?
With online coding activity increasing in leaps and bounds, there’s so much information about a programmer’s skill on the web. Most top programmers either engage with competitive coding or use services like GitHub to collaborate with developers on various projects. Open source contribution is more than ever and most open source projects have assigned ranks based on contributions. And yet, most of today’s tech recruitment happens based on non verified date.
The point is, that most professional networks don’t validate quantifiable skill. For most professionals, this is a portfolio or a body of work. Even then, the the work shown in a portfolio doesn’t need to be authentic. And as a rule, I think it’s every professional network’s responsibility to validate every quantifiable skill. We’re trying to do that for software developers, with our developer profile, and over the last year of its existence, our developer community has given us reason to believe that we’re on to something.
Do you have your developer profile? – hackerearth.com/about/profile
There are no men and women – there are only people. Similarly, in the IT industry, there should be no women or men – only programmers. Yes, there’s a massive discrepancy in the gender ratio, and men do have a lot on their plat to fix this. But women have their part in this – believe that they’re equal to their male counterparts in every way possible.
Deepa Soundararajan has been doing her part for many years. She’s a senior development manager at Intuit, along with being a loving wife and mother. Through the course of this interview, you’ll see that Deepa’s gender has no bearing on her life and professional choices. There are many women who’ve faced adversity in the IT industry, but not Deepa. She made her life what she wanted it to be.
This is Deepa’s story –
In the wake of the international women’s day hackathon, Intuit is hosting a women only hackathon on HackerEarth. The theme of the Hackathon is Simplify the Business of Life of an SMB in India.
Let’s just say, when we started off planning this Hackathon, we didn’t expect over 7000 women programmers to participate in a Hackathon. Some media publications are calling this a world record hackathon. We’d just like to say that it was very gratifying to see so many women programmers sign up for 3 days of code. Yes, there were prizes at the end of the contest, but I have a feeling they did so to prove a point.
Wanting to feel valued and wanting to be the centre of attention are subtly different. While both are cravings of attention, the latter doesn’t care much for where it comes from or what it means. The former, is a need to be recognised for good work. It is a need to be known as a symbol of positivity and excellence.
Anuradha Sinha, a Program Manager, is driven by feeling valued. And for all the doom and gloom that surrounds women in tech, Anuradha remains optimistic and always sees the positive side of things. And not to mention, she’s a really good coder!
This is Anuradha’s story –
Mark Zuckerberg once said that coding is the closest thing to a super power today. To think about it, it really is! With the internet and computer technology, human’s are doing the unthinkable today – talking to people who live millions of miles away from us, watching street views of far away cities without leaving the comfort of your couch and interacting with a virtual reality – all possible, because of computer technology.
And when you meet someone, who wields the power of creating such amazing things, the last thing you expect from them, is humility. However, that’s what we got from Divya Anand, who’s a software engineer at Akamai. We caught up with her on what it takes to be a woman in tech, and we got some key insights into her life as a computer engineer and her humble personality.
If you were to go to an engineering college today, you will often see electronics engineers being placed in software companies. You’d even find some of them complaining about a lack of core companies during placement season. But you will also see a few students, who’ve embraced the era of computer sciences and code. Take Vithya Kannapan, from SanDisk for example.
Her love affair with coding started from her days as an intern. She said, “When I started as intern in a company, I got to know that in future, embedded software would be the key for electronics systems. And, an Electronics Engineer would be incomplete without coding knowledge.”
And from then, there was no looking back for her. This is Vithya Kannapan’s story –
Positive people are a pleasure to deal with. Their demeanour and approach to life uplifts you and makes you want to be a better person yourself. It is the same positivity that helps them go forward in their careers. In many ways, this is the story of Shwetha Kashyap, software engineer at Harman.
We caught up with Shwetha to know more about her journey as a techie, and more importantly, her journey as a woman in tech.
On the occasion of Mindtree’s annual tech festival, Osmosis, the company is running a digital Hackathon for programmers from across the world. This is a great opportunity for programmers from all over to showcase their skills to the tech team at Mindtree and your programming peer group. Mindtree has been running Osmosis for the last 11 years now, and for the first time, will be hosting a digital Hackathon on HackerEarth’s robust HackerEarth Sprint platform.