szabgab: (Default)
Gabor Szabo ([personal profile] szabgab) wrote2009-08-21 07:16
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What I learned about women last week

It is not a new topic for me either but since I read the
Standing out in the crowd: OSCON keynote of [personal profile] damned_colonial about the lack of women in the open source world I tried to do some little things. Primarily I tried to talk to a few women about it.

I probably grossly misunderstood everyone, so let me just write down what did I understand:

Last week I had a chat with Su-Shee whom I guess I can describe as a geek woman that started off on how to attract more women to the Padre project. The main point I got from that conversation was that women are less interested in the technology behind the thing (e.g. they don't care much if it is written in Perl, Python or Java) and are more interested in how can a tool help them to get their job done.

This was more or less confirmed by my wife who is a super anti-geek.

On the other hand in the last 7 days or so I looked around DreamWidth in an attempt to locate interesting posts and people. Most of the people I found seem to be women - based on either their self description in their profile or on some of the comments they make. They are involved in conversations which are interesting but none of which seem to have any connection to getting things done.

That just seems sooo contradicting to me.

Based on this sample I can easily generalize to the rest of the 3+ billion women and say that I still have no clue what would interest (or allow) more women to join open source projects in general and Padre in specific and what could I do to help that.

Maybe most importantly what can I do to make the life of my daughter easier?

So for now back reading about Geekfeminism.
chichiri: Chichiri in drag (Default)

Re: posts vs actually doing

[personal profile] chichiri 2009-08-22 16:37 (UTC)(link)
In my case, part of the reason I say very little about work is my employer is a bit paranoid about trade secrets getting out. I do occasionally post about work, but the posts are mostly devoid of any technical details and center around "office politics" more, plus they are always locked.

The other reason is people at my company can very easily get consumed so they work way way way too many hours and pretty much have no life outside of work. To keep myself from getting pulled into that sort of lifestyle I try to keep work and "life at home", which includes my dreamwidth account, segregated for the most part.

Of course, I do fit the mold of "women are less interested in the technology behind the thing (e.g. they don't care much if it is written in Perl, Python or Java) and are more interested in how can a tool help them to get their job done" in that programming to me is typically a means to an end but in my defense I'm not a programmer by trade - my work in another area of technology instead. However, I do find joy in writing scripts at work, not only because of what they let me do, but because of the improved efficiency and the instant gratification of seeing it work right away.