History has a way of repeating itself. For example, the phrase, “history has a way of repeating itself” has been written before. So… case in point. But in all seriousness, as technology jobs become more and more ubiquitous and in-demand, there seems to be a familiar pattern with them, as with most maturing industries past: a lack of, and need of, more women taking part.
Many women are involved with the tech industry as it stands, but as far as the actual programming, or coding, it still seems to largely be a, “boys club.” The interesting wrinkle in this case, however, is that women aren’t so much excluded by their male counterparts, but more that fewer of them tend to think of computer programming as a viable career option. And we, as a society, need them to.
A Little Perspective
Women, in general, have a unique perspective and methodology as it relates to problem solving. And technically, that’s what coding is, a form of problem solving. Incidentally, women comprise the majority of internet users and even internet purchasers, so it only makes sense that women would have a unique insight as to what can be considered, “intuitive.” So one of the main reasons more female programmers are needed is that more end users are female, on average. And while I’m getting dangerously close to an early 90’s stand-up routine, it’s certainly not men who know best what women want.
Another reason the tech industry needs more female talent is because it needs more talent in general. And it makes little sense to pull from only 50% of the available talent pool (or is it 49%?). As mentioned above, the majority of people who code from an early age and see it as a potential long term career tend to be male. Not so much due to some concerted effort to keep girls out, but more due to a lack of concerted effort to get girls in. Although, with programs such as Girl Develop It in Philadelphia, the trend is shifting in a positive direction.
More women becoming coders can only benefit the economy, and therefore society, as well. The job market is a traditional barometer for how a society is thriving (or not), so as a matter of simple arithmetic, more women in programming positions = more jobs being filled in an industry that needs them filled = better overall economic standing.
Leveling the Arraying Field
As history does have this strange tendency to repeat itself, I believe it is somewhat inevitable that over time more and more women will find themselves enthralled with the creative process that is web and computer programming. While it may not be immediately apparent to the layman, coding is a technical art form. And all art benefits from diverse and unique angles of approach.
As it stands, the male to female coder ratio is still rather lopsided, but less so than in recent years past. And the technology industry has only benefited from this increase in perspective and talent. So for all of these reasons this trend needs to continue to be encouraged.