Monthly Archives

October 2013

News

Algebra Doesn’t Have to Be Scary

Many community-college students never make it to graduation because they can’t pass developmental, or remedial, math. Two courses from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and its partners prove that a more engaging curriculum and teaching method can help students succeed.

[ via The Atlantic ]

News

Women Techies Build a Room of Their Own in SF

“If you work in a male dominated field its easy to end up with all male or mostly male friends,” said Heather Rivers, 27, a new member of the all-female organization. “It’s very nice to meet like-minded women friends – people who are interested in collaborating and expanding ideas and materials and buildings things together.”

[ via MissionLocal ]

News

Dr. Luisa Whittaker-Brooks Discusses Her L’Oreal Research Fellowship and Latinas in STEM

Dr. Whittaker-Brooks won the fellowship for her post-doctoral research at Princeton University, where she focuses on renewable energy sources, such as solar energy. She hopes that by concentrating on recyclable energy, she can create products that enable all of us to personally capture, store, and release energy that is created from our daily movement, our body heat, or the sun!

[ via Latina ]

News

Putting The Spotlight On Blacks In Tech

Guess what. We’re not going to see that development in that African-American Steve Jobs if he’s not being mentored. You know, Steve Jobs was mentored by a lot of amazing people including one of the CEO’s of Intel and all sorts of other people. And what they do is they get in there, they work with you, they help you through these challenges and they share the network, they sponsor you and they support you. That’s what we have to have.

[ via NPR ]

Blog

STEMinist Profile: Gina Trapani, Co-founder and CTO of ThinkUp

Gina Trapani

Co-founder and CTO of ThinkUp

ThinkUp, http://thinkup.com

 



What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
As a kid, I was shy and socially awkward, but very curious about figuring new things out. When my Dad brought home my family’s first computer I spent as many hours on it as I could, tinkering, playing games, writing BASIC. Later in life, I didn’t have a definitive moment where I made a conscious decision to pursue a career in STEM. But when I graduated, the dot-com boom was in full force and developer (particular web developer) jobs were everywhere. I was obsessed with the web, and programming was something I loved and was good at, so it just seemed natural to get onto that track.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
ThinkUp (http://thinkup.com) is a social media insights app I started building a few years ago, which I’m creating a company around right now. It’s the coolest project I’ve ever worked on because I’ve learned so much from dozens of open source volunteers from all over the world who have contributed code, filed issues, debated on the mailing list, and installed the app on their own servers. It started out as a very small-scope idea, and thanks to my cofounder and the community, it has blossomed into a pluggable platform that generates insights for any social media source, from Facebook to Twitter to Foursquare, YouTube, and Instagram. ThinkUp’s open source community has welcomed and mentored young coders and converted them into passionate, knowledge OSS contributors. I love being involved in something that helps people learn and grow through building software.

Role models and heroes:
Even the most heroic people are flawed, so I tend to not admire individuals as much as their work. That said, my role models are usually people who have redefined their jobs or industries, produced great works, endured extreme hardship, or all of the above. A few names that come to mind: Amelia Earhart, Eleanor Roosevelt, Alan Turing, Emily Dickinson, my grandmother.

Why do you loving working in STEM?
The possibilities. At this point in history, it feels like the possibilities of technology are limitless.

Advice for future STEMinists?
Don’t overthink things. Just follow your gut and do it.

Favorite website or app: The web!

Twitter: @ginatrapani

Site: ginatrapani.org

News

Women of science, you are rock stars.

Amorphia Apparel is the home of irreverent, science-heavy shirt designs that turn famous female scientists into rock stars. I dig their Monsters of Grok line, which reimagines famous band logos, like the Red Hot Chili Peppers (above), to showcase women who deserve just as many standing ovations.

[ via Cool Mom Tech ]

News

Some Obscure, All Extraordinary: Historical Women in Science Honored

Another scientist featured in the show is a local: Brooklyn-raised Barbara McClintock, “a square peg in a round hole,” as Ruben described her. At Cornell University in the 1920s, McClintock “learns Yiddish — don’t ask me why — plays guitars, is kind of a hippie of the day,” Ruben said. But then, she finds her place in the school’s agricultural department, where she becomes interested in Indian corn, Ruben explained.

[ via LiveScience ]

News

Coding: still a man’s game?

As soon as anyone utters the word ‘coding’, a picture of a spotty teenager with thick spectacles and bad BO pops into your head. What’s more, that geeky teenager in your head is almost always a boy.

[ via The Telegraph ]