We’ve inherited this idea that the species known as “inventor” is easily identified by markings like a white lab coat, furrowed brow, bottle-thick glasses and, of course, male-pattern baldness.
In which case, where does Hedy Lamarr fit in? Today, the self-taught scientist and inventor is credited (along with an equally unlikely collaborator, music composer George Antheil) with the visionary thinking, and tinkering, that resulted in military “radio-skipping” technology, aimed at blocking Axis powers from intercepting and jamming signals from radio-controlled Allied missiles during World War II.
“She and many other women have contributed to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, but have been dismissed or deliberately forgotten by virtue of their gender,” said Leslie New, an assistant professor of statistics at Washington State University Vancouver.
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