So, I signed up to write a blog post for Ada Lovelace day as I am a woman, I'm in tech, and womens' issues are altogether close to my heart. As today started I didn't think that I was actually going to get around to doing it with the other mountains of things to do piled up around me - literally in part, as I'm moving. But a tweet about webchick's AL day list prompted me to at least throw something together.
It won't be a surprise to anyone when I say that, as a side of effect of the global view that women being born inherently over-emotional and irrational, tech and even more specifically programming circles have been and still are largely a boys' club. We men and women living in modern times owe a lot to daring and admirable women who have forced their way into being considered equal, able to vote, owning property, holding jobs and countless other rights we now take for granted.
I'm happy to be involved in a community, specifically the Drupal community, where a woman has become the co-head cheese if you will. Now, honestly, I don't know Angie Byron personally. I don't think I've ever actually *met* her, though like most people reading this, I know of her, have heard her speak, seen her around at Drupalcons and admire her inconceivable (for me, anyway) ability to keep this giant community and code base together.
Luckily for her, as it might be sort of creepy, I'm not even intimately familiar with her experience in the community and how she became one of the few people in the world whose knowledge of this platform that is used by some of the biggest companies in the world, thousands of websites and a kajillion users worldwide garnered her the position as the co-maintainer for the whole freaking thing. But that is damned impressive. I can't even keep up with group messages or the state of particular modules let alone the whole shebang!
Another layer if impressiveness is added on when you consider that the Drupal community, while as a whole is fairly progressive, isn't immune to hosting factions of people who have a very boys' club attitude. The Drupalchix group page says that only 10% of the Drupal community consists of women, which is better than 1.5% of the open source world as a whole. Furthermore, the members of the Drupalchix group feel a need for it to exist, which I would call pretty strong anecdotal evidence.
Layered onto the rest, consider this blog post that I read - sadly, I don't remember where I read it, but it was about someone's experience speaking of Drupal in a country where women are still second rate citizens. The author mused about what it meant that they were presenting this platform to a bunch of men who wouldn't normally recognize a woman as a figure of authority. But here they were learning this platform where, should they ever contribute back to its core, a woman is likely to be the one to approve or deny its inclusion. If you know of the article I'm speaking of please leave the link. That is a powerful thing.
I'm not sure if this post is a duplicate of one that may be written a little better or actually thought out before hand. If such a post exists, I could not find it. But I wanted to make sure that every day women, in addition to historical figures, were being recognized. Of course also specifically Angie, whom many, MANY people owe part of their livelihood and their company's success (and their awesome personal blogs existence, even) to her efforts.