We’ve discussed this internally and it was discussed externally already a lot: women in tech are not that common and the reasons are not that obvious, probably even related to distorted role models of ‘girls have dolls’ and ‘boys have tech’.
If you have ideas or experience with this topic to e.g. improve diversity in general for an open source community like ours, just answer here or send me a PM. Also keep in mind our code of conduct so that we can easier move forward as a diversified community.
One example I find amazing is that PyCon moved from 1% female speakers in 2011 to 40% in 2016, according to this nice overview. Also there are outreach programs for e.g. Gnome which improve the visibility of ‘welcoming women’, I’m sure there is something similar/appropriate for a much smaller community like us.
Over the last days I’ve stumbled over very interesting reads about this. Here are two of them with some interesting quotes:
(1) The Confidence Gap
- Some observers say children change our priorities, and there is some truth in this claim.* … *But these explanations for a continued failure to break the glass ceiling are missing something more basic: women’s acute lack of confidence.
- … this is essentially what Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told us a year before her book, Lean In, was published: “There are still days I wake up feeling like a fraud, not sure I should be where I am."
- Success, it turns out, correlates just as closely with confidence as it does with competence … The good news is that with work, confidence can be acquired.
Especially this part was interesting:
They gave male and female college students a quiz on scientific reasoning. Before the quiz, the students rated their own scientific skills. The women rated themselves a 6.5 on average (on a scale of 1 to 10), and the men gave themselves a 7.6. When it came to assessing how well they answered the questions, the women thought they got 5.8 out of 10 questions right; men, 7.1. And how did they actually perform? Their average was almost the same - women got 7.5 out of 10 right and men 7.9. The students were then invited - having no knowledge of how they’d performed - to participate in a science competition for prizes. The women were much more likely to turn down the opportunity: only 49 percent of them signed up for the competition, compared with 71 percent of the men
(2) The Loneliness Of The Female Coder
- to build a diverse and productive team where everyone feels welcome, everyone needs to change and adapt, and that includes the majority
- If you don’t know any female developers, you are probably not going to find them via your existing network
- Diversity makes better teams, and learning how to communicate with lots of different people makes your products better
Oh that’s probably not something I can do … She is now our lead front-end developer
I think it is nice that you care about this objective!
But at least for my person I’d add a 3rd aspect:
(3) Being engaged and not able to dance on more than one wedding.
Being a motorcyclist, longing for a replacement of the long-gone “Motor Bike Tour Planner” (at least it was called this way over here in Germany) which was a kind of reference-setting offline planer in the mid-2000’s, I’d love to join the team - at least in the direction of interweaving with respective visual map interfaces like Cruiser, or in the direction of identifying/managing custom & individual road preference settings.
But I’m occupied with too much other work, so my time would not yield enough time slots to dig into GraphHopper & its interfaces. If there are other people working on this issue please give me a note, and I’d love to take a look if I can be of any help, probably more on the testing/interfacing side than pure coding.
Thanks for your comment and nice to read this !
(3) Being engaged and not able to dance on more than one wedding
Note sure as I mean the general case: the average man programmer compared to a woman programmer - why would women have less time? Because they earn less and need to work more plus they are usually more involved in family responsibilities? But why are even women students less involved?
One recent (private) comment I got is that our website is more targeted to men due to its truck and (‘aggressive’) car picture. Would you agree to this? How could we improve? Picking a Renault Twizy instead of the BMW i9?
Update 2017: we have restyled our website to be more welcoming to everyone.
@boldtrn is digging into the motorcycle planner via its web app https://kurviger.de and there are other apps like http://calimoto.eu from @Sebastian - both closed source but mainly based on GraphHopper.
Very important topic! A great resource on that topic is also the documentary movie Debugging the Gender Gap.
Petra knows Kurviger and me We have actually been on a motorcycle tour this summer. Hi Petra
[quote=“karussell, post:3, topic:1131, full:true”]Note sure as I mean the general case: the average man programmer compared to a woman programmer - why would women have less time?[/QUOTE]
Sorry, this was the private part of my answer.
My guess: Their relative number w/r/to the total amount of programmers is definitely less, so you should re-check your “less involved” statement on that behalf. I’d assume that you reflect a fair share while the Python people did some additional actions to attract a more than fair portion. And my personal guess on the basic small share of female computer science students is: it is because of the basically analytical approach that the creation of (complex) programs adheres which is not the principal domain of the majority of women. Of course you will find some that are attracted, but we are sort of speaking about statistics here.
Forget about the Twizy: I just had the chance of driving such a thing on the eRUDA rallye round the German Ammersee (“lake Ammer” southwest of Munic). As a motorcycle driver it was an interesting experience but compares rather to a go-cart with a roof than a car. it is an absolute niche product without any practical usage beyond bringing the bare yourself and a handbag from A to B within a range of some 50 km - and then you need a power plug desperately for several hours to get back again. This is not necessarily very appealing to women either. (At least again for the majority!)
Yes, I honor Robin’s work very much and actually designed my today’s tour with it. It is my present method of choice for practically all motorcycle tour planning. Today, admittedly after urging it by placing vias on very small roads, it surprised me with some legal(!) gravel tracks, partially through the woods, that really were “interesting”, to say the least.
But my reported issue was/is to have a comparable OSM based route planner handy in case of a non-existent internet connection. Therefore my prospective approach via Cruiser + GraphHopper.
@Robin: Today I let your planner create an extensive addition to the via points, and to my real astonishment comparing to former test on that behalf it worked like a charm! (But please re-check the Tomtom8 export: it did not work for me and i had to fall back on gpsbabel to do the conversion from GPX to ITN.)
BTW: I like the fact that Grace Hopper is named&presented there