The Jacquard Loom and 21st Century "Me Too"

Jaquard Loom

Brown Bag Lunch Online Presentation with Tom Boyer

Monday, November 6, 2023 - 12:00pm

Brown Bag Lunch Online Presentation with Tom Boyer: We will discuss how computers became a catalyst for the increase of women’s roles in the workforce. The presenter will offer personal recollection of his 35 years at Hewlett Packard and the changes he saw as computers -- and especially software -- became an entry point for a new type of “engineering” discipline, one where men were not entrenched.

Joseph-Marie Jacquard invented an “automatic” loom in the late 1700s. Features of this loom led to Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine, and then to Ada Lovelace’s invention of algorithms. From these beginnings, we can trace the intermediate steps that lead to the 21st century, when Carly Fiorina was chosen to head one of the largest high-tech computer companies.

Tom Boyer has a 35-year history with Hewlett Packard before moving to Humboldt County. His background is in high tech; however, when he moved to Humboldt County he was granted a B.A. in studio arts from Cal Poly Humboldt.