The life of Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992) is the journey of a young professor who served her country in the Navy after Pearl Harbor. There, on the front lines of the computer revolution, succeeding in the all-male computer industry, Hopper was ultimately to achieve a career as a celebrated elder stateswoman of computing, and a heroine to thousands, hailed as the inventor of computer programming.
In Grace Hopper and the Invention of the Information Age, Kurt Beyer reveals the authentic Hopper, a vibrant and complex woman whose career paralleled the meteoric trajectory of the postwar computer industry. Hopper's greatest technical achievement was to create the tools that would allow humans to communicate with computers in terms other than ones and zeroes. This advance influenced all future programming and software design and laid the foundation for the development of user-friendly personal computers. If you’ve ever needed to debug a computer, you owe a debt of gratitude to Grace Hopper.
Long before Silicon Valley became synonymous with all things digital, New York was a hub for imagining, developing, and selling the technology that ultimately reshaped entertainment, commerce, and daily life. The Silicon City exhibition at the New-York Historical Society explores this overlooked history of the city as a center for computing, and the museum store has a wonderful collection of fun, high-tech (and low-tech) gifts for the occasion.