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The most dangerous phrase in the language is, “we’ve always done it this way”.

If the American computer scientist and computer pioneer had followed the motto, which is quite common – and especially typical – for most technicians of all genres, she would probably never have participated in the development of the first programmable US digital computer, MARK I, and never would have been the third person ever (and the first woman anyway) to program this computer. It is symptomatic that as early as the late 1940s, she came up with the idea of formulating computer programs in comprehensible language instead of two numbers; the mere thought of better understanding and a possible reduction in fear of the new technology seems to be an empathetic ability that is more suited to smart women than men.

 

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