And we thought there weren’t enough women programmers…

Challenge Women copy

HackerEarth recently concluded the woman only Hackathon last Saturday, which happened to be international womens day. GDG Delhi partnered with us and they did a great job in bringing the brightest women programmers in Delhi under one roof to solve a mean two and a half hour long algorithm problem set.

Now when you’re assessing such a challenge, you’re more eager than objective. In the numerous code jams that we’ve conducted in the past, we’ve had a predominantly male audience. We were interested to see if there would be any difference in this, given that it would be a woman majority. Would we see the same rate of submissions, let alone the same number of submissions.

Boy were we surprised.

The customary first 5 minute submission was there. The surge of submissions at the 45 minute mark was there. Hell, the astounding, oh-my-god-that-is-brilliant-code reaction from our reviewer was also there. To put things in perspective, here are some stats from the woman tech makers code jam -

  • 139 Participated
  • 366 submissions
  • 60 attempted at least one problem
  • 45 got at least one problem right

The winners of the code jam were Saloni Agarwal and Ishita Gupta. They not only solved all the problems right, but also took the least time to do so.

But, to be honest, every woman who took part in this challenge is a winner. No, we’re not just saying that. Every woman/girl who came to a GDG event or took to the computer last saturday made a subtle, yet clear point. And we’ve got data that corroborates it. This Hackathon was no different to any of our other ones. And that’s the difference.

We restricted the contests to only women, and there was no difference in the way the hackathon went about. The girls who took part proved that there is no gender in programming. You’re either a good one or you’re not. And given the fact, the unspoken bias against women in technology just doesn’t make sense. It’s hard to understand the basis of the belief that women won’t be as good coders as men. That very belief has also reduced the number of women in tech.

Well, HackerEarth and GDG made a small point last saturday. Will company’s pay heed to it? We hope they do.

Join us in congratulating Saloni and Ishita on winning the woman only code jam. Saloni has won this awesome iPod Shuffle and Ishita has won this cool pair of Apple Earpods.

 

Raghu Mohan