Filed under Gender roles

I Could Never Do What You Do: Well-educated ladies’ perceptions of computer science

When I was asked to speak at a recent Girl Geek Dinner here in Saskatoon, I immediately said yes. I love public speaking. The trouble was I had no idea what I was going to talk about. Knowing that the audience would come from diverse backgrounds, I didn’t want to discuss a highly technical software topic that would be applicable only to a handful of the attendees. At our previous dinner, we had watched Sheryl Sandberg’s TED Talk about why there aren’t more female leaders, which seemed to be well-received. But I wanted to discuss something more personal. Continue reading


So, diversity really does matter?

One of the most commonly cited reasons to encourage women to join forces with the nearly-all-male nerd-army known as ‘computer science’ is ‘diversity’. This always struck me as buzz. ┬áBut, as many are quick to clarify, rather than diversity for diversity’s sake, what’s being encouraged is broadening the potential work force to include the other … Continue reading

Good comedy requires no explanation

Scott Adams’ March 27th blog post, I’m a what, is whelmingly anticlimactic. (If you’re not familiar, Scott Adams is the author of Dilbert. There, you already love or hate him.) This recent post details the reason why he chose to delete a slightly less-recent blog post after it received much negative attention from the blogosphere. Continue reading

The Motherhood Penalty

I’ve had men tell me to my face that given the choice between equally-qualified male and female candidates for a job, they would always choose the male candidate. The reason? Predictably, that the woman is more likely to take maternity leave and to be the primary caregiver for her children than the man. Continue reading

Creation of computer games an effective teaching tool for girls and boys, alike

Last November, researchers at the University of Alberta published an interesting finding in the ongoing mission to reveal what on earth might bring girls to be more excited about computing science. Through a joint effort between the Computing Science and Education departments, Mike Carbonaro, Duane Szafron, Maria Cutumisu and Jonathan Schaeffer discovered a gender-neutral activity … Continue reading

Princess at the keyboard

I am a busy lady. As such, I have trouble finding time to read ACM TechNews every time I receive it. Instead, I have committed to read every headline in every issue I receive. I began this habit a few years ago. Slowly, a pattern began to emerge: nearly every issue of TechNews included at least one headline regarding women in computer science. Continue reading