Digital woman

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Saturday, March 8, 2014


IF YOU have a family computer, where is it located in the house? Usually in the brother’s room, yes.

I’m an example of women who don’t have tech knowledge in a “gender divide,” as a research team calls the condition of more male than female in today’s tech revolution. I feel lost when overpowered by tech jargon and high-speed modern developments.

The fight is of women trying to interest co-gender in digital living and the “code education”–the code being a shorthand for programming languages in websites. This is as much as they have other women’s rights to keep safe in the family, at work, in politics.

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Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg said on the eve of an international Women’s Day that an “understanding of computer science is becoming increasingly essential” in the world.

There is a need to educate the children and this includes the girls, she said.

How simple for a woman is computer science?

Let’s start with something like ‘”digital software” which is divided into data and programs with the programs as instructions on how to handle data. This such statement isn’t even very clear unless the source gets a proper digital training. The data can be numbers or text called bits and bites stored in electronic memory. And you don’t have to be a programmer to appreciate it, female founders of code education insist.

There’s no way denying that the digital touch is all over our lives, in the lives of women, too.

Yes, the free woman knows about the development of the world from the ancient times to modernity, to digital living in a life in the universe which is continuously changing. This the woman learned in college—of progress in mechanization, automation, science and medicine, to cite just a few important aspects of life.

Developments in science and technology, even also in politics, inspired the human being’s curiosity and sent him into deeper studies of life in an age of discovery and globalization in the late 19th up to the 20th century.

But where are the digital women in greater forces?

Facebook chief Sandberg and Yahoo chief executive Marissa Meyer are in the world of “code education and digital enlightenment” but how many more are there like them?

For one, a count of computing students in the UK in one year showed only 7 percent female.
In 1998, there were 12,529 male and female students and the number dropped to 3,420 in 2012. Imagine how low the number of women in the list was.

Yes, women surf the Web, who doesn’t? They even buy online the week’s grocery items in most digitally advanced countries. But it seems that only guys are deep into studies of designs and the creation of new technology.

The women could help fill up the lack of trainees in computer science programs. This, even while developments continue to demand for graduates of degrees such as Information Technology and (IT) Information System (IS).

But the computer clubhouses stay as “male clubhouse.”

Still, there are the female-specific technology groups doing something to be heard and to attract women to go into code education for “enlightenment.” One technology group in UK calls themselves Lady Geek. “It’s not about feminizing technology, it’s about de-musculanising it.”

This is another fight for empowerment of women and women tech professional workers. Female founders of code education, like Sandberg and Yahoo chief Meyer, would take this as true emancipation of women in today’s modern world.

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(ecuizon@gmail.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 09, 2014.

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