Byron’s girl celebrated in global event

One of Ashfield’s most famous daughters has been celebrated around the world in an event that aims to raise the profile of women in science.

Tuesday, 13th October 2015, 2:05 pm
Leader of Ashfield District Council, Councillor Cheryl Butler, ponders over some fiendish maths puzzles using a calculator. Ada Lovelace's work inspired the invention of the calculator.

Ada Lovelace Day is marked across the globe on October 13 and encourages people to talk about women they admire who work in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Ada Lovelace was a pioneering mathematician, the first female computer programmer and the daughter of Lord Byron, whose ancestral home was at Newstead Abbey.

Leader of Ashfield District Council, Councillor Cheryl Butler said Ada was a powerful symbol and role model for women in the modern world.

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“Ada’s pioneering work paved the way for items like the calculator, computer and mobile phone – which we all take so much for granted today, so it’s wonderful that she has such strong links with Ashfield through her father, Lord Byron.

“It is also remarkable that this young woman was able to achieve so much when the majority of young women were barely educated. She is a really powerful and inspiring role model for women – especially those embarking on a career in science, maths or computing.”

Ada Lovelace met inventor Charles Babbage in 1833 and they worked together to develop the Analytical Engine - an early predecessor of the modern computer.

She translated an Italian article describing the Analytical Engine for publication in England and her translation contains several early ‘computer programs’.

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero recently visited the Ada Lovelace building in Kirkby. She said: “Hers is a fascinating story which I hope will inspire girls in Ashfield and beyond. Ada is obviously internationally renowned and we should be really proud that she has such a bond with the district.”