Saturday, October 8, 2011

Ada Lovelace Day: Susan Kare and the Apple Mac

Today is Ada Lovelace Day, a day to blog about female computer scientists we admire. Augusta Ada Byron, Countess of Lovelace (10 December 1815 – 27 November 1852) is credited with authoring the first computer algorithm (which concerned a method for calculating a sequence of Bernoulli numbers) in 1843 for use on Charles Babbage's early mechanical general-purpose computer, the analytical engine.

This year I'm going to write a posting on Susan Kare, whose contributions to HCI (Human Computer Interaction) are immense. She is an artist and graphic designer who created many of the interface elements for the Apple Mac.

She started working for Apple in 1982 and created a number of user interface elements for the Mac, which set the standard for all graphical user interfaces. Some of her contributions are here:

As well as the iconic "Happy Mac", she worked on the Chicago typeface, the Geneva typeface, and the original monospace Monaco typeface.

She left Apple to join NeXT (the company Steve Jobs set up after he left Apple in 1986) as the Creative Director. She currently works as an independent graphic designer working with all of the computer giants including Microsoft and IBM. Her work for Microsoft includes the card deck for Windows 3.0's solitaire game:


No comments: