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Behind the ‘Hidden Figures.’ “I counted everything: the steps, the dishes, the stars in the sky” – Katherine Johnson It’s the holidays, and with a huge pool of new film releases, there is one that stands out this year. This film tells the untold story of Katherine Johnson, the Black female mathematician and her peers, or even better, the “black human computers” at NASA. These women played pivotal roles in NASA’s trajectory and yet have been massively overlooked for much of American history. Until Theodore Melfi‘s ‘Hidden Figures’ does well

If you had one year of living free of bills, what would you build, what company would you start, or what problem would you solve? The issue is critical because of some today’s most famous companies [both in technology and otherwise], began with the generosity of family and friends that provided them with ‘runways’ to start. What Is A Runway? One of many typical patterns that tie successful companies together is a ‘runway.’ I describe a ‘runway’ as dedicated time and resources to help get an idea to a successful

I never grew up ‘technical’. I remember an exasperated friend having to explain the concept of MSN instant messenger [I feel old] to me around the mid-00s. Long story short, I didn’t have a clue. Computers were something I used like everyone but barely understood. I just wasn’t that ‘computer guy’ growing up. So how was it that I’ve ended up as a software engineer at a venture-backed tech startup, then as lead developer/founder at POCIT? It all started with an idea for a website I had back during my

I recently took the opportunity to head down to NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California to see the arrival of Juno from behind the scenes. I was there as a social media ambassador with a group of other thought leaders to share in NASA’s next big moment of space exploration. While I was there, I met people I would not otherwise meet; the scientists who had an active part in designing the instruments on Juno, the project managers who drove the mission forward and even the Assistant Director for

One of my favorite movies is Ratatouille because of it parallels to what it’s like being a minorty entrepreneur. One of the quotes from the film describes Anton Ego’s epiphany “Not everyone can become a great artist, but a great artist *can* come from *anywhere*.” The quote is empowering because it puts everyone on an equal playing field. It doesn’t matter if you didn’t go to a top school, came from a poor background or what gender you are, anyone can have a great idea for business. Running a startup

Everyone loves hearing origin stories. How did you first get into tech? My father works in technology at a state university. I used to sit in his lap like a baby and play a typing game he’d pull up on his screen. As I got older, he never stopped encouraging my inner tinkerer, and so I was constantly building things and taking apart computers. Weirdly, I didn’t consider a career in tech. I was into everything: writing, chemistry, physics, art; you name it. Your background is originally in Social Entrepreneurship.

picture courtesy of #WOCinTechChat Written by Camille Eddy   In my role as a machine learning intern, I go to work every day and start my job. I turn on my computer and start looking at my next tasks. But what was quickly unavoidable is the realization that the field of Machine Learning is not very diverse. In this article, I hope to outline why as a black woman, helping to make the next intelligent robot is a massive deal. And why we need to bring more underrepresented groups into

I would argue that ‘diversity in tech’ is the most discussed topic within the tech industry (if we are not counting when the tech bubble will pop of course).  Articles discussing diversity pipelines, company’s diversity percentages, and the newest “director of diversity” infiltrate our timeline every day. As the jobs available in the tech industry continue to soar it is imperative, that those roles are filled people of a diverse background. The benefits of a diverse workforce are no secret. Multiple perspectives, more feedback that is indicative of the general

Once upon a time, I was a non-tech parent living just within the boundaries of the ‘Tech Empire’ of Silicon Valley. Before I was introduced to the world of computer science and coding, I was raising my child with the recipe that has been used for generations. This well-known formula is to supply our children with a fabulous primary and secondary education, adding a blitz of extracurricular activities both inside and outside of school. As parents, our hope is that between school and their sports, music, arts, and languages, our

If you base your next career transition on what I like to call “shiny career articles”, all you need to do is polish your resume, ace the interview, and get hired. So, when I needed to make a career transition, I thought that it would be easy. Almost four years later, I’ve learned better. Unlike the standard career advice that you get from “experts”, we all know that the job market can be messy and complicated (and sometimes petty, but that’s another issue). Despite that, we shouldn’t feel overwhelmed or

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