Grace Murray Hopper - A Life Story It was 1906 in New York City when the great pioneer in data processing, Grace Murray Hopper, was born to the parents Walter Fletcher Murray and Mary Campbell Horn Murray. Even as a young child Grace loved learning about mathematics and the new technological advances that were coming out, mostly because of her surrounding environment -- her mother was a mathematician. Although at the time women were not considered as important to society as men were, she would turn out to be one of the most important influences of the century.
In 1924 Grace attended Vassar College, majoring in the sciences, specifically mathematics and physics. After four years of hard work she graduated with Phi Beta Kappa honors and a Vassar College Fellowship. With that she progressed to earning her MA in mathematics at Yale University in 1930, and her Ph. D.
in 1934, along with two Sterling Scholarships and an election to Sigma Xi. While finishing her college education she married the New York University English teacher Vincent Hopper. Her computer technology life would soon begin following her graduation.
Upon graduating, Grace was accepted to the Bureau of Ordinance at Harvard University. That is when she was introduced to and assigned to work on Mark I -- the first large-scale U.S. computer and precursor of electronic computers. Her first assignment with Mark I was to "have the coefficients for the interpolation of the arc tangents completed [in about one week]"Ã¢ÂÂ¦ not a problem for Grace. She would then be the third person ever to program the Mark I. At that same time, the Mark I was being used to calculate the angles at which naval guns were to be aimed. Shortly after that a machine called BINAC was being developed which...