Herschel, Lovelace, Hamilton and Hopper: Women in the Two Ages of Wonder

A new podcast series with the University of Auckland History Society…

Thursday 13th August, 2020

Michaela Selway and I have just published the third episode of our new podcast series for Tāhuhu Kōrero, the University of Auckland History Society blog site. This time we profile the life of Ada Lovelace, arguably the first computer programmer of the Victorian Age. The links for all the episodes are below.

I have always been fascinated by the history of science, particularly in the period that Richard Holmes calls “The Age of Wonder“. This was the period from 1726 to 1830 that followed the Late Enlightenment. After Isaac Newton had opened up science with his laws of motion, astronomers like William Herschel gave the public a glimpse of the universe beyond our Solar System.

In this series, Michaela, Kathryn and I look closely at the women who were breaking into this new world of science that, up to that time, had been dominated by men. After the first introductory episode, we will profile Caroline Herschel, Ada Lovelace and then go on to look at Margaret Hamilton and Grace Hopper in the 20th century.

Episode 1 podcast Introduction and blog post The Enlightenment before the Age of Wonder

Episode 2 podcast on Caroline Herschel and the blog post Caroline Herschel – Minder of the Heavens.

Episode 3 podcast on Ada Lovelace and the blog post Ada Lovelace: The First Computer Programmer

Clockwise from the top left – Caroline Herschel, Ada Lovelace, Grace Murray Hopper and Margaret Hamilton.

Author: Rockweather

I am a writer, musician, teacher, and researcher at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) in Auckland, New Zealand.

3 thoughts on “Herschel, Lovelace, Hamilton and Hopper: Women in the Two Ages of Wonder”

    1. Thank you for your kind comments. Feel free to contact me through the Contacts page. That comes straight to my email account here at Rockweather.


  1. Hi Baz, taught by both Alan and Phil with backup from Robert Wellington. Having some different thinking about computing is needed, I found it wonderfully refreshing having a philosophical a slant fed into my thinking on computers and their use. It led directly to me writing an undergrad paper about “Minecraft” and it’s usurped usage by those playing it much to the surprise of the developers.


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