100 Most Influential Tech Women on Twitter

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Thanks very much to Business Insider for including me in an awesome line up of women in their “Most Influential Tech Women on Twitter 2014″. I came in at number 35 and am in very prestigious and truly awesome company, with many great friends also on the list. Check out the top 100 compiled with help from Peer Index.

** I went back to school aged 26, even I didn’t manage to have three kids and get divorced by the age of 20 ;)




2 Awards in One Day!! #cwwomen #nia2014

Yesterday was an awesome day. I was voted 9th most influential woman in tech by Computer Weekly in the afternoon and we won the Nominet Internet Award for the best Online Skills and Training company in the evening.

There are so many great women on the Computer Weekly list, do check them all out. Dame Wendy Hall was rightly voted most influential woman, with the awesome tech pioneer Dame Steve Shirley in second place. Great also to see MP Chi Onwurah placed and several BCSWomen including the wonderful Hannah Dee :-)

The Nominet Internet Awards in the evening were awesome too. So lovely for #techmums to win our award and great that our fellow BGV alumni WriteLaTeX won an award too. Great hosting by Kate Russell as always.













#techmums meet #techma’am

This Monday I and 349 other techies went to a wonderful event for tech entrepreneurs hosted by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace. It was an absolutely awesome evening, I caught up with lots of fab friends, made lots of new friends and also had lots of lovely chats with people who are fans of Bletchley Park, BCSWomen and women in tech. A real night to remember, and thank goodness there are pics to prove it otherwise I’d be in danger of thinking it was all a dream….











Operation duck rescue

At home this evening I heard a cat miaowing strangely in the kitchen. My grown up daughter Emma went to investigate and came back with my younger daughter Leah, and a duckling in a bowl! One of our cats had brought in a small duckling. It was cute and seemed unharmed. We wondered what to do with it. Take it to a vet? Take it to the park near our house where we suspected it had come from? I went on to Twitter and Facebook to find out what the best thing to do was.

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The duckling was so cute! Here is the photo I posted it in the bowl that Leah put it in.



Lots of friends made suggestions via Facebook and Twitter, we started to phone the RSPCA only to be told by my friend Fiona on Facebook that the RSPCA might put it down! Oh dear.

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We decided to try taking the duckling to the park to find its mother.

Leah put the duckling into a box with a tea towel and we walked over to the park. Our cat Sophie who had brought the duckling in followed us down the road miaowing at us, what was she saying to us?


When we got there we saw some people sitting by a pond, we asked if they had seen a family with ducklings, they said that there was one at the other pond. We walked over to the other pond and saw a mother duck with some ducklings. Leah helped the duckling out of the box and into the pond. The duckling swam across the pond to the mother duck, who attacked it! We screamed “Oh No!” We were scared that the mother would kill it, but she just swam off.

The duckling swam around and around It then cheep/quacked around the pond for about 10 mins. We were really worried watching it swimming around anxiously. Finally it swam to the edge, got out of the pond and started running across the grass. We realised that it was running across to the other pond, the one where we had looked first.


We followed the duckling about 100 metres across the park to the other pond.  Emma filmed it. As we got closer we saw that there was a mum with her six ducklings at the edge of the pond. Our duckling ran over towards the mum, then went straight into the pond and started swimming around with the other identical ducklings. The mum then got back in the water and swam around with all of them.

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It was really amazing. We couldn’t believe it. Absolutely incredible. We watched them all swimming around together for a while and then came home. What a wonderful result. We had been almost convinced that the duckling was going to perish, but amazingly not only did we find her mum, but also her mum took her straight back as if nothing had happen.

When we got home Sophie was obviously extremely annoyed with us, she sat on the piano swooping her tail around aggressively. Did she bring us the duckling as a present and we had taken it back? I wish she could tell us.

Here’s the video that Emma shot of us running across the park after the duckling :)

[Been trying to post the video without success, will try again tonight 4/5/13]





I’m off to the Palace!

How exciting to return home after a lovely Everywoman lunch at Rockabox today to find this at home

I was so excited I couldn’t open it at first. When I did I found that it is an invitation from the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh to a reception for the UK technology industry at Buckingham Palace. Which is cool, because that means there will hopefully be lots of friends there too. How exciting 😃

Now I just need to work out what to wear, any suggestions?

Girls in ICT Day – Geneva April 2014

I’m in Geneva for a couple of days to celebrate Girls in ICT day 2014 #girlsinICT with the ITU the International Telecommunication Union, the part of the United Nations that specialises in technology. I’m on a panel later on today. We arrived yesterday afternoon and after a short British Airways flight from London which took just over an hour.


After a 15 min train ride from the airport we were in the centre of Geneva


After checking in at our hotel we went to be interviewed at ITU and met some of the fabulous women who work there :) We just had to take a #selfie…


Then my daughter Leah and I went to have a look around and hang out.



Here we are outside the UN HQ building


This is Baby Plage, a fabulous mana made beach with play equipment made from recycled car tyres etc.


At the #girlsinICT conference Super Awesome Sylvia demonstrates her WatercolorBot


Leah looking forward to the digital music making workshop


Super Awesome Sylvia again :)


ITU Secretary General Hamadoun Toure welcomes us all to #girlsinICT day


The wonderful Doreen Bogdan Chief of Strategic Planning at ITU, a great role model for the girls here and for us all

Chief of Strategic Planning and Membership at ITU BlPz9DQIMAA-oEm

Sylvia gets lots of interest from the gilrs and tells everyone about when she met President Obama at the White House. Go Sylvia!


Sylvia interviewed again about what she has done and what she is interested in. Check her out at The Sylvia Show.


What an awesome day! …and it has only just begun, looking forward to more exciting stuff this afternoon.


From Tower Hamlets to the House of Lords…

Originally posted on Savvify: Engage Enlighten Inspire:

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Today was a busy #techmums day, and a day of contradictions. Mary and I ran our week 5 #techmums class with Bishop Challoner school mums in Tower Hamlets in the morning. We were happy to see our fab mums, but sad because it was the last class for this wonderful group. I’m going to miss seeing them every week.

#techmums graduation

#techmums graduation

After graduation with certificates and “I’m a #techmum” tshirts Mary and I went off to talk to a primary school down the road about running #techmums there. They were keen :)

Then it was back into London and a walk from Waterloo to the House of Lords where I had a really great chat with our fab patron Baroness Martha Lane Fox about #techmums, women in tech and Bletchley Park.

Such a massive contrast from morning to afternoon. The morning spent with mums in Tower Hamlets where the average…

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The revolution will not be televised….but it will be brought to you by #techmums

Originally posted on Savvify: Engage Enlighten Inspire:

Techmums T3

Guest blog post from Jemima Gibbons, Social Media Strategist.

I just got back from two amazing days at Google Campus – training to be a #Techmums trainer.

In case you haven’t heard or read about it yet, #Techmums is a new initiative from Dr Sue Black (the mum of 4, computer scientist and self-proclaimed “cheeky geek” whose become a bit of a household name after campaigning to save Bletchley Park a couple of years ago).

Sue wanted to do something to help change the image of computer science in the UK, and she decided to start with mums – because they’re key to children’s safe and savvy use of technology, but all too often know little about computing.

After running a successful pilot in Tower Hamlets last summer, Sue and her team raised enough funding to roll out the #Techmums programme to other schools in the South East.


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Bletchley Park debate – me and #techmums mentions in the House of Lords


I’ve just been pointed at the Hansard for the House of Lords debate on Bletchley Park yesterday. I feel so honoured to have been mentioned not once but twice by firstly Lord Sharkey and then Baroness Martha Lane Fox in the debate about Bletchley Park’s future.


Great that #techmums, Code Club and YRS are mentioned too. Go Martha and thanks Lord Sharkey :)


Happy Days :)

Guardian incorrect, misogynistic headline – “First Brit in space…”

Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 14.15.06 The Guardian has a piece today about Tim Peake, the second Briton in space. Tim is quoted as saying ” Helen Sharman was the first Brit in space back in ’91, but they’re calling me the first official Brit in space because I’m the first UK government astronaut, if you like. Helen’s was a kind of private, commercial-sponsored flight.Helen Sharman was the first Briton in space in 1991 when she was just 27. She beat 13,000 other Brits to become the first Brit in space and spent 18 months training in Star City, before her 7 days in space. What a remarkable woman! Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 14.19.25 I read and loved Helen’s book “Seize the moment” and read it when it came out. It is a really straightforward, modest and genuine account of Helen’s life and the whole story thru training and selection to actually being in space. I find it offensive and mysogynist that The Guardian article on Tim Peake has the misleading headline “First Brit in space Tim Peake…”. We should be proud that early on in the space game we selected a woman from 13,000 applicants, shouldn’t we? We do cool, radical things in the UK occasionally, choosing a woman to be Britons first person in space is one of those things. Can any other country boast the same? Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 15.53.12 Helen Sharman should be a well known British icon, but most people have never heard of her. A fabulous woman in STEM. Let’s change that, please do whatever you can to promote Helen and her achievements. #1stbritinspace