Thursday, August 12, 2010

Women in technology

Today I found a new blog for a female dev. Her name is Nicole Sullivan-Haas. I read some of the CSS articles she has posted on her blog and I must say, I learned a lot. I still have many articles left to read, but I came across the article that was on her front page entitled "Woman in technology". I agree with her on several points like the definition of "The Code Cowboy", "The Good Developer" and that the dev community certainly is a "Sausage Fest".

With that said let me say that I am all for having more women in the dev field. Truthfully, I would prefer to be working with women mostly because it is not such a competition on who is smarter. I currently work in an I.T. department that does not have any females. I have worked with only a few female devs in my career and those each I would not hire if it was my choice. This has nothing to do with them being women, but instead it has to do with their attitudes and abilities. So what I am saying is although my preference is to work with women, I cannot say I have a lot of experience working with female devs. In the end I really do not care if my co-worker is female or male, but if all experience and abilities are equal I would probably choose a female dev just to keep the environment from being a "Sausage Fest".

My problem here and the reason for my post is more aimed at how people think it is ok to create things like "2010 Google EMEA Travel and Conference Grants for female computer scientists". When you say "for female", you just became sexist. Why am I not good enough to get this grant? Because I am a guy? So because I was born of the opposite sex I cannot apply for this grant. Is me being a guy mean I have more money to spend to attend this conference? Does me being a guy mean I do not need to learn what they have to teach at this conference?

Things like this frustrate me. People say they want to be treated as an equal, but then they find something to like their gender, race, age, etc. to make themself stand out. If you want to be treated equal then fine, give me the same opportunities. Don't exclude me because of my gender. This all just goes to show me how our society cannot learn from our own past. We still have racism running rampent in our society and we only go on to show how we never learned from how wrong that is.

I did not come from a rich family who paid my way through college, in fact I have paid for all the college classes I have attended. I am a self taught dev, who has spent the last 15 years of my life teaching myself to program and design. I have busted my butt to keep my job, do the best I can and learn everything I can on my own. To see something like this just rubs me the wrong way, because it just tells me that it does not matter what you have done or worked to do, you don't deserve any help.

Yours truly,
Bitter Party of 1.