Google is hoping that Wonder Woman will help more girls learn to code. How you ask? From their Made with Code program, Google has launched an initiative that will hopefully inspire more girls learn to code. The initiative allows anyone to choose one of three scenes from Wonder Woman and code that particular scene. The initiative is geared towards girls, however, it should be noted that anyone can participate. Or at least I hope it does. It is geared towards girls. Why? Because women are hugely under represented in the tech world. Again, I ask myself why? Women have had to prove themselves time and again, for many years, and in the tech industry its no different.
Will this actually spark an interest for girls in coding? Or in technology in general? I think that it’s hard to make a determination on that. Wonder Woman is pretty cool, but will it be enough? I’d like to explore this article applying some stereotypes, but that doesn’t mean that I agree with them. Or think they’re relevant. They are, however, key, in my opinion to why Google has launched this initiative. So what are these stereotypes that I speak of? Women are traditionally pushed towards professions where they are helping people. For example, nurses, personal support workers and teachers.
So if we continue with this train of thought, how can we apply this to programming or technology? Let’s say that women are better in the role of “helping”. Whether that be learning, personal care or medical. How can we apply the role of “helping” to programming? Or is there? The reason I’m asking this is I wonder if the approach is all wrong. Women tend to be under represented in the science field more generally. And how do we address that? We show what science can do. We show all the amazing things that science does, and we let people explore their interests. Now I’m not saying that Google isn’t doing that. But they could have picked any movie. And they did. Previously they did the same thing with Inside Out.
I have written a lot about equality and diversity, and my opinion is no different in this case. I think this is a great initiative. I think that we need more women in the technology industry. In science, math and engineering. But I also feel like we are pushing girls into things that maybe they don’t want to participate in. The programs in school need to be gender neutral in my opinion. If they were, any one, regardless of gender could participate and determine if that was the right program for them. And I see this on the other side of the coin as well – when we try to get more men into female dominated fields. Can you say male nurse?
I have heard some good things about the new Wonder Woman movie. And if this is what encourages young women to become programmers, then all the power to them (and Google). I do like what Google is doing though. I’m not trying to rag on them. They are making progress. My issue is with the system, and not necessarily the players. I want to see a diverse group of people in these fields and industries. That’s how we get amazing ideas and products. That’s how we get the next new and fancy technology. So if this is what it takes, then let’s go. But don’t miss the boat on diversity while you’re at it.