Ada Lovelace

Ada Lovelace


Tuesday 14 October 2014

Celebrating women in technology...

The Ada Lovelace Day conference was planned to excite the interest of the girls aged between 9 and 18 at Streatham & Clapham High School and at other GDST schools in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Ada Lovelace was the daughter of Lord Byron and regarded as the first computer programmer after she developed the first algorithm intended to be carried out by a machine in the 1840s. This was a day of stimulating talks, coding sessions, and workshops run by experts in the digital field. Professor Lord Winston opened the conference with a thought-provoking talk about his pioneering work in IVF and the need for a sound scientific knowledge in all areas of life.  Emma Mulqueeny of Rewired State group, one of the top ten women in technology, encouraged girls to appreciate the role the digital world will play in all aspects of their lives and careers and how important it is that females help to shape that world, in her close-of-conference speech. During the day, pupils experienced a wide range of digital-technology-related activities, which included learning how to make a website out of nothing in under an hour, writing a game for the web, and even making a computer.


 We were delighted to welcome the Duke of York during our morning session. He  talked to the girls in a number of workshops, and introduced them to his digital  initiative, iDEA, which was launched on Wednesday 15th October. Our pupils'  contributions to George the Poet's words, used at the launch event, can be found by  clicking here.


Click here for details of the speakers in the day's programme.

BLINKBOX @blinkboxcomms!/

Launched in 2007 and now employing more than 350 staff, blinkbox offers the latest release movies and TV, music and books online, instantly.

blinkbox Books is an ebook service based around a really simple idea. Reading. They help customers discover new stories and writers, catch up on old favourites and get recommendations from authors, publishers and fellow readers, delivered straight to their tablet or smartphone.

blinkbox Movies allows you to rent or buy all the latest release movies and TV shows and watch them on a whole host of devices. They’re at the cutting edge of digital technology and always looking for the best ways to enhance their customers’ movie and TV viewing experience.

blinkbox Music strives to create the best possible music experience for their users. With over 12 million tracks on their service, they curate and create music stations for every mood and occasion possible. In their first nine months they hit their one-millionth app download – and they’re just warming up! 


George Burgess is the Founder and CEO of Gojimo, a mobile revision app for students. George founded the company when he was just 17. Studying for his A-Levels, he found there were few useful mobile revision resources, and he set out to solve the problem. Five years later, Gojimo is the UK's leading revision app and counts Oxford University Press and McGraw-Hill Education as partners. The company has raised over $1 million in funding from Index Ventures and the innocent drinks founders, and is now starting to expand internationally. 

CRISTIANA CAMISOTTI @Cristianacamiso @milkroundabout   

Cristiana originally comes from a product background, having started up her career heading up branding and visual design at Glo and HCL and later launching her own events company, Event Atelier. She is now a Cofounder of Silicon Milkroundabout, a biannual London based jobs fair matching the UK's Startups with the finest Software Engineers, Product Experts, Designers and Tech Marketers. The event aims to support Startups of all stages, from bootstrapped to established, and Cristiana is passionately campaigning to get more women, young people and other underrepresented groups excited about world of tech. 

SMR 8, Milkroundabout's next event takes place on the 15th and 16th November at The Old Truman Brewery. 

DAVE CROSS @davorg

Dave Cross is an open source consultant, trainer and writer. Since1995 he has owned Magnum Solutions, a small London-based consultancy and has worked on projects for clients as wide-ranging as Ed Byrne, Credit Suisse and the BBC. In 1998, he started the London Perl Mongers, one of the largest and most active programming user groups in the world. In 2004 he won a White Camel Award for contributions to the Perl community. Dave is a regular speaker at Perl and Open Source conferences. He is the author of "Data Munging with Perl" (Manning, 2001) and a co-author of "Perl Template Toolkit" (O'Reilly, 2003).

JULIE DAWSON @surfandturftech

Surf & Turf Camps teach children digital skills at day camps during school holidays and also at weekend residential camps. Children aged 8-13 are given the time, space and skills to get creative online - making video games, mobile apps and robots . Children also learn presentation skills and how to give feedback.They enjoy outdoor physical challenges to help develop their confidence and team building skills. Founder Julie set up the venture to encourage children to be both active and to develop their natural curiosity for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). 

DREAM LEARNERS @dreamlearners

Dream Learners was created by two friends - both teacher mums – who set off on a mission to educate children at bedtime through the magic of storytelling because this is the most effective way to learn. They call this Ed4Bed and use app-based technology to reach as many children as possible with an affordable, broad-curriculum teaching tool. Their bedtime stories, rich in cross-curricular content, create connections between diverse topics to optimise learning for 3-8 year olds. Their approach is supported by Professor Robert Winston who is a Director of the company and their Education & Scientific Advisor.


Debbie Forster is the UK Managing Director of Apps for Good, an award-winning education technology movement that aims to create a generation of problem solvers and digital makers.  The programme helps young people learn to create imaginative apps that change their world, giving them a launchpad in social enterprise and the exciting world of technology, design and innovation. Debbie led  the roll-out of the programme in the UK, helping the programme to grow 50 students in London to over 20,000 young people across the UK in just 3 years. Prior to joining Apps for Good, Debbie was Head of Education for the UK’s sector skills council on IT, advising on education policy and strategy and acting as the organisation’s education spokesperson. Debbie has 20 years of educational experience teaching in a wide range of schools in the UK and the US and served for six years as headteacher in a UK secondary school.   



Founders4Schools champions high-impact career choices by enabling teachers to invite founders of fast-growing, successful businesses into their schools to talk to students about entrepreneurship. F4S is a free service for primary and secondary school 

teachers in the UK. 


Google DeepMind was founded in 2011, and is supported by some of the most iconic technology entrepreneurs and investors of the past decade. The team combine the best techniques from machine learning and systems neuroscience to build powerful general-purpose learning algorithms. Google DeepMind’s mission is to create
artificial intelligence agents that can play games, solve puzzles and allow robots to see, move and think.


The digital development team powers the digital products for the Guardian News & Media. This is all developed by one team, with a cross mix of product managers, designers, developers and testers. The Guardian is well known within the development industry and mixing this with the newsroom makes it an interesting and challenging environment. 


Anne-Marie Imafidon has always been interested in business, maths and technology. Her rather unique set of achievements include passing two GCSEs aged ten (Mathematics & ICT), holding the current world record for the youngest girl ever to pass A-level computing (aged 11), being named on Evening Standard’s recent list of ‘25 under 25s’ and the Guardian’s ‘Top 10 women in tech you need to know’,  and being one of the youngest to be awarded a Masters’ degree in Mathematics and Computer Science by the University of Oxford, aged 20. She was also named the UK IT Industry & British Computer Society’s Young IT Professional of the Year in 2013, 2014 FDM Everywoman in Technology ‘Rising Star’, and won UnLtd’s Innovation Judges’ Choice Award in 2014. Anne-Marie set up the Stemettes project – a bid to inspire the next generation of females into Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics roles via a series of panel events, hackathons and exhibitions.




Kano creates computer and coding kits for all ages, all over the world. Their mission is to give young people – and the young at heart – a simple, fun way to make and play with technology, and take control of the world around them. It’s a toolkit to get ready for the future, powered by Raspberry Pi, simple as Lego. Kano is the most crowdfunded learning invention ever, having raised $1.5 million in 30 days. In September, over 18,000 kits were shipped out to 87 countries. Powerful computers are cheaper than textbooks. 2.5 billion of us carry one every day. But still only a tiny fraction of us, the tech-literate 1%, understands how they work. It shouldn’t be so hard to get started – to make, play and experiment right out of the box.


Avid is a general partner at Google Ventures. Prior to Google Ventures, Avid co-founded Boticca, a global marketplace for independent brands of fashion accessories. She has been involved in the startup ecosystem as a developer, product manager, founder, investor, and advisor since 1998. In addition to her role with Google Ventures, Avid is an advisor to Founders4Schools and the Breteau Foundation. She serves on the Harvard Business School European Advisory Board. She also leads and the Hour of Code in the UK. Avid earned her B.S. and M.S. in engineering at Stanford University, where she was a Mayfield Fellow. She also holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and is a Kauffman Fellow. She currently serves on the Harvard Business School European Advisory Board. She speaks French, English, Farsi, and German.


Sabrina started her studies on IT at a technical high school in Brazil, where she is from. At University, her course was Information Systems, a mixture of software engineering and management. She left a sunny island in Brazil to do a MSc in software engineering at Queen Mary, University of London. For the past 6 years she has been working at Songkick. Songkick is a live music company, connecting artists and the fans that want to see them live. At Songkick, Sabrina’s role is Director of Engineering, which means, besides programming, helping the development team and product managers to define and build the products and features Songkick needs.

ANTONIO LULIC @antoniolulic

Antonio Lulic (@antoniolulic) is a web developer and musician. He has toured all over the world and has supported Ed Sheeran in the UK and USA.

MICROSOFT @MicrosoftWomen

Microsoft are inspired every day by the genuine belief that they can change the world for the better. They are driving advances in cloud computing, developing new ways for people to interact with technology at home, work and on the move, while transforming education and public services across the UK.  


Morgan Stanley is a leading global financial services firm providing a wide range of investment banking, securities, investment management and wealth management services. The Firm's employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals from more than 1,300 offices in 43 countries. The mission of our Global Technology division is to provide a highly reliable and commercial technology platform, which supports the Firm’s strategy, delivered by an innovative, world-class team of professionals. Part of our core values at Morgan Stanley is giving back and be generous with our expertise, time and invest in the future of our communities. As employers of technologists we feel that it is our duty to support the system that provides us with our future employees.



Emma Mulqueeny is one of the top ten women in technology today. She is the founder of Rewired State and Young Rewired State, is a Commissioner for the Speaker’s Commission on Digital Democracy, and a Google Fellow. She has recently been included in the 166th annual edition of Who’s Who, voted onto the Wired 100 list, Tech City 100, BIMA Hot 100, has been voted one of the top ten women in technology by The Guardian and in the top ten Tech Heroes for Good by NESTA. Emma writes regularly for the British Press and on her own blog, speaks on radio and on television, is best known for her campaign ‘Year 8 is too Late’ (encouraging girls into technology subjects) and for relentlessly pushing the potential of open data.




Kristian Flint is a Delivery Manager in the Product domain; the Website Merchandising and Product Recommendation teams develop and maintain systems that determine which products are presented to customers. This includes classifications, sort orders and cross-selling.

 Frank Wales is a Delivery Manager in the Group Commerce domain; his teams look after all of NAP’s customer and order data, and provide tools and systems for teams such as Customer Care, Marketing and Online Fraud.

KATE RICHARDSON @katewritescode

Kate Richardson is a Software Developer. She has been at JUST EAT for a year and loves the environment, the people and the interesting work that she does on a day-by-day basis. Working in technology demands a mix of creative, logic and problem-solving skills. There's a lot of team work and collaboration. Software developers are involved in a wide range of diverse and challenging projects, engaging customers and building new systems and websites. Kate gets a brilliant feeling to see software that you have designed and produced in use and the benefits it brings to users. To anyone considering their job options, Kate would highly recommend a career in technology. She is a C#.Net Developer and also uses a bit of Ruby from time to time.


The digital development team powers the digital products for the Guardian News & Media. In April 2014 the Guardian passed 100 million unique browsers and the team are developing a new responsive website and launched new apps in May 2014. Along with these products the department also develops tools for editorial and journalists, a commenting system and moderation tools. The company also has successful products with an online dating website and a jobs website.

This is all developed by one team in London, with a cross mix of product managers, designers, developers and testers. The Guardian is well known within the development industry and mixing this with the newsroom makes it an interesting and challenging environment.

TREEPRESS @treepress

TreePress is an online market place and community, connecting people who are writing scripts with the teachers and schools who need them.Teachers can browse and buy scripts. Writers can upload and sell scripts and licenses.  Teachers have choice. Writers can bring their plays to life on the school stage. Teachers, writers, performers and their audience can connect.

VISUAL DNA @Visual DNA, @VDNACareers

Visual DNA currently work in two sectors: marketing services and credit & risk services. Both use their patented visual method for sourcing psychometric data. And in both, they aim to transform the way people are understood for the benefit of both businesses and customers. 


Louis Houghton, Developer at White Clarke Group will be in attendance and has run a number of successful workshops on behalf of White Clarke Group. He is passionate about programming and enjoys encouraging that passion in others.

White Clarke Group is the world's leader in end-to-end automotive and asset finance software solutions and consulting services. It is a global organization employing around 500 professionals, with offices in the UK, China, USA, Canada, Australia, Austria and Germany.

The company's award-winning CALMS2 end-to-end platform provides a flexible workflow approach that automates the entire business process from origination through contract to portfolio management ― trusted by more than 100 customers in 30 countries around the globe. 


Robert Winston is Professor of Science and Society at Imperial College London. In the 1970s he developed techniques that improved fertility treatments and later pioneered improvements in vitro fertilisation (IVF) and subsequently developed pre-implantation diagnosis. He still runs research at the Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology at Imperial aiming to improve human transplantation, his latest work involves the modification of genes to improve treatment of many medical conditions.


Professor Winston is committed to science communication and education and has presented numerous award-winning TV and radio programmes and written 20 books. He set up the Reach Out Lab at Imperial College, a state-of-the-art science laboratory where school children can access the latest technologies and raise their ambitions. He is also a director and advisor for the innovative education startup Dream Learners Ltd. 


Made a peer in 1995, he speaks regularly at the House of Lords on education, science, medicine and the arts. He chaired the Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology 1999-2002.


He is passionate about classical music, pre-war cars, Arsenal Football Club and fine wine.