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African Americans Who Have Shaped Coding, Technology, and the FutureFebruary 1st, 2023

Coding, and digital technology in general, is the future of society. It's not the future for one specific group, but the key for everyone, everywhere, to connect and grow.

When it comes to recognition, the Black community has historically been overlooked in the technology sector. But, this doesn't mean groundbreaking, society-redefining advancements haven't been created by African Americans.

Here are just a handful of examples.

Charles Lee Isbell Jr.

Charles Isbell Jr. is a famed computationalist currently teaching at the Georgia Institute of Technology College of Computing.

Before his current position, Charles' tech journey saw him travel from MIT – where he studied machine learning and AI – to research and development positions at AT&T Labs.

Charles is currently focused on broadening the interest and accessibility to the computer field to anyone with the desire to learn. You might have seen/heard him on a few YouTube podcasts before!

Mark Dean

Mark Dean grew up with a love for technology and figuring out how things worked. Starting out with the small task of building a tractor from scratch with his dad (flex), Mark would eventually find himself working at IBM.

Despite racial prejudices encountered throughout his career, Mark continued to excel at designing the next wave of computational power. His contributions include the Industry Standard Architecture (ISA) bus, the one-gigahertz computer processor chip, and IBM's first personal computer.

Marian R. Croak

Photo Credit: Creative CommonsAttribution 2.0 Generic license.

How often do you use VoIP technologies? Probably waaaaay more than you know.

VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), also known as IP telephony, transfers audio and multimedia packages over Internet Protocol networks. All those facetimes with friends and Zoom meetings at work? Yep, that stuff.

This modern technology was spearheaded by Marian Croak during her time at AT&T. Thanks to her efforts, communicating with your friends, family, and work – all over an internet connection – is as easy as opening an app.

John Henry Thomson

Are you into video games? How about movies?

If so, then you can say thanks to John Henry Thomson. John was instrumental in creating some of the film industry's first nonlinear editing tools while at LucasFilm (think the precursor toolset to Final Cut).

John also created Lingo (a coding language like C# or Java) in 1989, which was used in Adobe Director and made scripting intuitive and easy to grasp.

Annie Easley

It's tough not to know who Annie Easley is. Born in 1933, Annie was instrumental in NACA's (later NASA's) attempts to escape Earth's atmosphere.

She worked on a multitude of fronts -- from developing data-analyzing code to designing the code and checking the calculations that would see the Centaur high-energy upper rocket stage climb into space.

Essentially, Annie acted as a human supercomputer before supercomputers were a thing, all while helping NACA/NASA create and improve its first computer systems and software.

She managed to do all of that while fighting stigmas and racism at what is today an agency filled with a diversity of thought and backgrounds.

Jump In

There's no required "baseline" to get into coding or any other tech sector. It doesn't matter what your ethnicity is, what religion you practice, or what kind of economic background you come from. All that matters is that you have a desire to learn and a drive to apply everything you learn.

Traditional Software Engineering education paths like college are unobtainable for many people due to time constraints or financial brick walls. TrueCoders has built our teaching structure around making your transition into the coding landscape as accessible and flexible as possible.

We offer a variety of course options to find the perfect fit for your strengths. We work with your schedule to make sure class revolves around your world, not the other way around. We offer a variety of payment options to fit any budget.

And we treat everyone the same – as fresh minds eager to start a new future with limitless possibilities.

If that sounds good to you, give us a call.

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