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Women Who Launched the Computer Age

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This book was chosen by the Children’s Book Council as a best STEM book of 2017! Meet the women who programmed the first all-electronic computer and built the technological language kids today can’t live without in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a new series of biographies about people “you should meet!” In 1946, six brilliant young women progra This book was chosen by the Children’s Book Council as a best STEM book of 2017! Meet the women who programmed the first all-electronic computer and built the technological language kids today can’t live without in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a new series of biographies about people “you should meet!” In 1946, six brilliant young women programmed the first all-electronic, programmable computer, the ENIAC, part of a secret World War II project. They learned to program without any programming languages or tools, and by the time they were finished, the ENIAC could run a complicated calculus equation in seconds. But when the ENIAC was presented to the press and public, the women were never introduced or given credit for their work. Learn all about what they did and how their invention still matters today in this story of six amazing young women everyone should meet! A special section at the back of the book includes extras on subjects like history and math, plus interesting trivia facts about how computers have changed over time. With the You Should Meet series, learning about historical figures has never been so much fun!


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This book was chosen by the Children’s Book Council as a best STEM book of 2017! Meet the women who programmed the first all-electronic computer and built the technological language kids today can’t live without in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a new series of biographies about people “you should meet!” In 1946, six brilliant young women progra This book was chosen by the Children’s Book Council as a best STEM book of 2017! Meet the women who programmed the first all-electronic computer and built the technological language kids today can’t live without in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a new series of biographies about people “you should meet!” In 1946, six brilliant young women programmed the first all-electronic, programmable computer, the ENIAC, part of a secret World War II project. They learned to program without any programming languages or tools, and by the time they were finished, the ENIAC could run a complicated calculus equation in seconds. But when the ENIAC was presented to the press and public, the women were never introduced or given credit for their work. Learn all about what they did and how their invention still matters today in this story of six amazing young women everyone should meet! A special section at the back of the book includes extras on subjects like history and math, plus interesting trivia facts about how computers have changed over time. With the You Should Meet series, learning about historical figures has never been so much fun!

30 review for Women Who Launched the Computer Age

  1. 5 out of 5

    Vannessa Anderson

    Women Who Launched the Computer Age is about human computers. Female mathematicians who worked for the Army programming ENIAC were called computers. The Army hired them to calculate where bombs should land and that was called setting weapons a/k/a pinpointing where the missile would land where they would do the most damage. The female computers were in charge of figuring out how to make the Army’s computer, ENIAC work. Once ENIAC was up and running a party was thrown to celebrate but none of the Women Who Launched the Computer Age is about human computers. Female mathematicians who worked for the Army programming ENIAC were called computers. The Army hired them to calculate where bombs should land and that was called setting weapons a/k/a pinpointing where the missile would land where they would do the most damage. The female computers were in charge of figuring out how to make the Army’s computer, ENIAC work. Once ENIAC was up and running a party was thrown to celebrate but none of the women were invited nor were their names mentioned. Women Who Launched the Computer Age was an informative read about how female computers made it possible to talk on a cell phone, type on a computer and to play video games. Women Who Launched the Computer Age was a very good read.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*

    Calkhoven, Laurie You Should Meet Women Who Launched the Computer Age (Level #3 Early Reader) 48 pgs. Simon, 2016 $3.99 Content: Language: G (0 swears); Mature Content: G Violence: G This is the incredible story of a group of women who programmed the ENIAC computer in the mid-1940’s as part of a World War II project. They were hired for their skills in math and accomplished incredible strides in the programming. Each of the women are introduced individually and we learn about their motivations an Calkhoven, Laurie You Should Meet Women Who Launched the Computer Age (Level #3 Early Reader) 48 pgs. Simon, 2016 $3.99 Content: Language: G (0 swears); Mature Content: G Violence: G This is the incredible story of a group of women who programmed the ENIAC computer in the mid-1940’s as part of a World War II project. They were hired for their skills in math and accomplished incredible strides in the programming. Each of the women are introduced individually and we learn about their motivations and accomplishments. Many facts are listed, including how they were not recorded in the history of the ENIAC computer and that photographs of them at work listed them as models! It wasn’t until a college student dug into the history that she discovered their forgotten role. Tons of full color illustrations. This book would be 100% essential except that it’s an early reader that is about a complex topic, which is a format vs reading level issue. I really don’t think that a second grader (who would be level 3 reader) would understand World War 2 and women’s role in the that time period. I feel like this should have been presented as an upper grade picture book, which would make it essential to share with a group. The illustrations are just stellar!!! EL(K-3) –ADVISABLE Reviewer: Stephanie Elementary School Librarian & Author. http://kissthebook.blogspot.com/2016/...

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joanne Roberts

    Straightforward and informative. Well-written for first to third graders. Introduction to six female pioneers who worked on the first programmable computer during WWII. Short index of other female mathematical pioneers. facts were organized. Terms were explained in context.

  4. 5 out of 5

    McKenzie Richardson

    For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle Amazing non-fiction read. This is a Level Three book, which means it is a long story with a complex plot as well as challenging vocabulary. This was such a fascinating read. I really enjoyed it and actually learned a lot about some truly inspiring women. The book consists of five chapters that tell the story of how a group of women figured out how to program ENIAC and their impact on technology today. At the end of the book, there is additional inf For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle Amazing non-fiction read. This is a Level Three book, which means it is a long story with a complex plot as well as challenging vocabulary. This was such a fascinating read. I really enjoyed it and actually learned a lot about some truly inspiring women. The book consists of five chapters that tell the story of how a group of women figured out how to program ENIAC and their impact on technology today. At the end of the book, there is additional information about the history of programming, the development of the numbers one and zero, computer facts, and some other women who impacted computer technology. There is also a short quiz in the back of the book to test reading comprehension. The book is fairly wordy with a lot of information so it is probably best read over multiple sittings. Really great book and an amazing story. I wish I had read about these impressive women who I was a child.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    These women had no instruction in programming, not from teachers nor from books, so they had to learn on the job, problem by problem. They weren’t invited to the party celebrating ENIAC’s success, even though they had done all of the programming. This is a good book honoring their accomplishments.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jj

    Lots of interesting information imparted here in an accessible way. However, I found the illustrations somewhat confusing--all of the women featured (six of them!) look like almost the same person. Oh wait, one of them has glasses and longer hair... but they are pretty much indistinguishable from one another otherwise.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Dawn

    I feel pretty angry that no one ever taught me about these women while I was growing up. I'm so glad there are books like this, so I can make sure my daughter knows the amazing things women have done . . . and do a little catching up myself.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mary Barthel

    Wonderful story. Women were the first programmers in 1945. Not men This is a well written little history story about how programming was first created - all by women. I would recommend this to all girls who say they “cannot do math.” How wrong they are!!!,

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    Way to whitewash yet another children's book. Sigh.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Holladay Shaw

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Jean Jennings, Kay McNulty, Frances Bills, Ruth Lichterman, Betty Snyder, and Marlyn Wescoff figured out how to make ENIAC to solve math problems.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lumi / Otso

    very interesting; the 7 year old loved it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    Library copy This short chapter book is packed with information about computers! It discusses early computers, the events surrounding World War II, the reason for hiring women to do the programming, the women that were hired, and how they worked on the project. The fact that they were not given any credit is highlighted, and a little information is given about their lives before and after their work with ENIAC. The back of the book has even more information about computers and programming, in sma Library copy This short chapter book is packed with information about computers! It discusses early computers, the events surrounding World War II, the reason for hiring women to do the programming, the women that were hired, and how they worked on the project. The fact that they were not given any credit is highlighted, and a little information is given about their lives before and after their work with ENIAC. The back of the book has even more information about computers and programming, in smaller print. This is a well done book on a neglected group of women who should have been given more credit! Calkhoven (who does the great Boys of Wartime series) does a great job at offering difficult topics in a way that early readers can understand. Since there are few books on this topic, I appreciate that more notes were added at the back of the book. Alyssa Petersen's pictures are great-- I'd love to see her do more book covers, since her style is just the right balance of cartoon without looking too elementary. The pages are rather crowded, since the type is large. I would have almost preferred this to be in a larger format so there would be more white space, but the issued size brings to mind I Can Read books, which is an excellent hook. Books of this length are a great way to entice even middle school readers to pick up nonfiction books. Some great pictures of ENIAC appear on this site: http://www.digitaltrends.com/computin...

  13. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Tournas

    Few people know the names of the six women who programmed the first computer that could do more than one computation at a time. It was 1946 and ENIAC ( Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer) had been built by the U. S. Army to pinpoint exactly where a missile would meet a target. Six civilian women, all mathematics lovers, were hired to figure out how to make ENIAC work, with no existing instructions. These women did succeed in writing the first general-use computer program. But none of t Few people know the names of the six women who programmed the first computer that could do more than one computation at a time. It was 1946 and ENIAC ( Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer) had been built by the U. S. Army to pinpoint exactly where a missile would meet a target. Six civilian women, all mathematics lovers, were hired to figure out how to make ENIAC work, with no existing instructions. These women did succeed in writing the first general-use computer program. But none of them were ever given credit, nor invited to ENIAC's presentation to the world. This early grade non fiction reader succeeds in explaining a world in which computers didn't exist and showing how the first programmers created the first high stakes programming. The unexceptional backgrounds of these six women notwithstanding, they still rose to the situation because of their love of math. The fact that these pioneer women programmers sank again into obscurity after the war is shown to be a natural consequence of the times. Back matter adds appeal by explaining the history of programming and listing other women pioneers in computer technology. Digitally painted illustrations in sepia saturated tones create an on-spot nostalgic setting for this collective biography.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    This is a slim, 48 page, overview that is packed with amazing information about the pioneering women who programmed the first math computer created during WWII. It was hoped that this computer would shorten the time it took to calculate trajectories for rockets. While it was never used during the war, it was a breakthrough in computing that set the stage for the launch of the computer age. This will inspire reader, ages 7 - 12, to seek out more information about these fascinating women.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    It continues to astound me how many women have contributed in significant ways throughout history and failed to received proper credit for it. These women were discovered by accident, even! I hope this trend keeps gaining speed. We need to hear more stories of women and people of color! Children especially!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Boling

    12/28/2016 ** A GoodReads/WLU friend marked this as TBR on her GR page. It looked interesting, so I've ordered it from IndyPL too.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Gioia

  18. 4 out of 5

    Leigh-ann Defreitas

  19. 5 out of 5

    Megan

  20. 4 out of 5

    Vanessa Vallejos

  21. 4 out of 5

    Susan

  22. 4 out of 5

    Karla

  23. 4 out of 5

    Chris

  24. 5 out of 5

    Carly

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sandy Brehl

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

  27. 5 out of 5

    Esquivelkiddos

  28. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amie

  30. 4 out of 5

    Courtenay

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