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17-Year-Old Girl Wins Boston TV API Programming Contest 117

Posted by Soulskill
from the strong-work dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Jenny Lamere, a graduating high school senior from Nashua NH, was the youngest of 80 participants (and one of only four women) in the Hill Holiday TVnext hackathon held in Boston this past April, a programming contest sponsored by TV API providers. Her submission of 'Twivo,' an app that allows TV viewers to block spoiler tweets while watching a show and recover them later, won the contest's 'Sync to Broadcast' category (one of five), and was also named the event's 'Best in Show' (overall winner). At least one tech company has expressed interest in her app (a short demo and interview with the judges starts at 3:30 in the embedded YouTube clip). Lamere plans to enter the Rochester Institute of Technology in the fall, and will pursue a career in software development."
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17-Year-Old Girl Wins Boston TV API Programming Contest

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    In suing her for trademark infringement.

  • by tidepool (137349) on Saturday May 11, 2013 @01:02PM (#43696277)

    She'll share a very similar Male/Female ratio when she attends RIT as well, at least as of 15 years ago or so...

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      at least as of 15 years ago or so...

      When, as we all know so well, the world was exactly the same as it is now.

      Also, in other news, men and women are different and a gender imbalance somewhere doesn't automatically mean something is horribly wrong and must be fixed.

      And here's some actual statistics - the ratio last year was 67:33, a bit closer to 50:50 than 76:4.

      • by Seumas (6865)

        As long as nothing is unfairly barring the opportunity, I don't see that anything else matters.

        94.2% of nurses are women, but I neither see any need to shift that to 46% (because women are 54% of society) nor anything in nursing preventing men who do want to be nurses from doing so.

        source: http://www.minoritynurse.com/minority-nursing-statistics [minoritynurse.com]

      • by duckgod (2664193) on Saturday May 11, 2013 @02:16PM (#43696725)

        at least as of 15 years ago or so...

        When, as we all know so well, the world was exactly the same as it is now.

        Also, in other news, men and women are different and a gender imbalance somewhere doesn't automatically mean something is horribly wrong and must be fixed.

        And here's some actual statistics - the ratio last year was 67:33, a bit closer to 50:50 than 76:4.

        The current male to female ratio at RIT Computer Science program is 68:1. RIT also has a fruitfall Arts program which brings in a lot of females. This is where you get the 67:33. I never took a computer science class with a female while there. In fact outside of a few liberal arts classes I was free from the distraction. However, every once in a while I would see one of those mythical creatures from a window on the 3rd floor of GCCIS. That always made for an exciting day...

        • by antdude (79039)

          During my college [apu.edu] days from 1994-1998, it was 3 (females) to 1 (males). And yet, I still didn't get a girlfriend, married, and am still a virgin today. :P

      • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

        Also, in other news, men and women are different and a gender imbalance somewhere doesn't automatically mean something is horribly wrong and must be fixed.

        I agree, but can you suggest why women would be inherently less interested in computer science than men? I know there have been some studies in apes but they seem to be mostly bunk (why would a male ape want to play with a car when he clearly has no idea what a car is?) On the other hand girls consistently perform better at school, seeming to be more academically inclined at that age.

    • by stalky14 (574130)

      Ha. I was an RIT student in the 90's too. It was a total sausage fest. I went back for a visit in 2005 because I was in the area and noticed a lot more women there. I don't know what the per-major balance was, but it was at least better overall.

    • by AdamHaun (43173)

      I started at RIT in 2000 and graduated in 2006 and even by that point the ratio was a lot better. There were mixed-gender groups of freshmen walking around the dorm side, and they actually looked... happy?

      Not sure it would be my first choice for college if I were a girl, but yay for her raising the value of our diplomas in any case.

  • Negative Attention (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 11, 2013 @01:15PM (#43696351)

    I wish people would stop focusing on age and gender.

    • by femtobyte (710429)

      So no one will notice systematic discrimination, which allows sexism to be a deeply rooted controlling factor for real-world systems so long as it's not too blatantly stated in writing?

      • Yaknow, feminists go on and on about how women should be equal, they shouldn't be the recipients of special attention, etc. etc. etc. And then something like this happens - and it wouldn't even be a story other than the person who won it just happened to have a vagina. It sort of makes feminists look like a bunch of hypocrites.
        • by femtobyte (710429) on Saturday May 11, 2013 @03:22PM (#43697133)

          Yaknow, centuries of deeply entrenched stereotypes don't magically vanish away overnight. Lifting up counter-examples to the stereotype that women just aren't mentally cut out for logical/intellectual work is important to eradicating such views. Other young women should get the chance to see female role models praised in the media for accomplishments besides being Miss Teen America 2013. While an ultimate goal is reaching a society where it's nothing special for a woman to be a programmer, to *get there* from our present sexist world, one needs to actively push back against entrenched misogyny.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Someone Wins Boston TV API Programming Contest

      "Jenny Lamere, a graduating high school senior from Nashua NH, was one of 80 participants in the Hill Holiday TVnext hackathon held in Boston this past April, a programming contest sponsored by TV API providers. Her submission of 'Twivo,' an app that allows TV viewers to block spoiler tweets while watching a show and recover them later, won the contest's 'Sync to Broadcast' category (one of five), and was also named the event's 'Best in Show' (overall winner).

    • It is a reality that women are are poorly represented in IT. In fact, if you're one of those types who believe "reverse discrimination" is an issue, you should be upholding her as an example that women can and do succeed in computing and thus need no special attention.

      I'm happy because she can be a role model for her peers, both male and female.

      • It's also a reality that they're poorly represented in the plumbing and electrician trades, and that men are poorly represented in nursing, the beauty industry, and education. Why are there no complaints and attempts at artificially twiddling the ratios in those fields? It can't even be a money thing - I know plumbers and electricians who earn about the same as me.

    • by Swampash (1131503)

      Yeah, we need to focus on things more important than that a female won a programming contest.

      Like, why was there a dev workstation in the kitchen?

    • by jamesh (87723)

      I wish people would stop focusing on age and gender.

      It's a double edged sword that one... On the one hand there's a danger of people focusing on her age and gender at the expense of her entry and tech skills, which is bad for all the obvious reasons. On the other hand this might open the eyes of other young girls who just assumed such things were out of their reach - an easy assumption to make when they look around and see a playing field dominated by males.

      I watched the start of the vid... they made a bit of a big deal about it at the start and made some co

  • by Anonymous Coward

    After all, nobody would have watched if an adult male programmer won it, would they? Not that TV producers ever fake results to court an audience, of course; such a thing would be unethical. No, just like all the other instances of similar wins, it's just proving once again that all little girls are cleverer than anybody else. Yeah.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by interval1066 (668936)

      After all, nobody would have watched if an adult male programmer won it...

      A friend of mine whom I respect and admire as a programmer very much might have a lot to say about this. Men receive accolades for being great programmers all the time, the industry is completely dominated by men. Everytime my friend has gotten a new job (she's on her second one in S.V., she's from the east coast and a Carnigie-Mellon grad, very accomplished) she gets hit on by the men in the staff, and knowing she's a lesbian doesn't seem to phaze them. She's gotten held back on other jobs because the admi

      • by godrik (1287354)

        a fellow engineer has a vagina between her legs.

        Picture or it did not happen!

    • who modded this shit insightful?

      It's basically dismissing all female achievement as manufactured because the achievers are female. The only thing it offers insight into is the mind of angry anoymous bigots.

  • I would comment... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    ...but with all the hullabaloo around the treatment of women in computer science lately I'm not even sure what to say anymore. Did she win because she's a girl? Did she win despite being a girl? Clearly being a girl matters, or you wouldn't have mentioned that only four girls participated. Do we wish her luck with her career choice or do we warn her off because she's going to be ogled by her predominantly male colleagues if she pursues this career? Would she prefer that we not talk about her chromosomes and

    • It it notable because it is rare, and it is rare because of the astonishing gender imbalance.

      This will probably cue the whining about how men and women are different, but not explain how in the very, very early days the gender imbalance did not used to exist in the same way.

    • by BobSutan (467781)

      Very good questions. If Jenny was a Jeremy would this have received the attention and accolades it did? Given how prone to bending over backwards academia is to women in tech and heaping praise on women because of their gender, my gut says probably not.

  • I've found the best broadcast television hack of the past decade has been not to watch it.

    *shrug*

  • by RogueWarrior65 (678876) on Saturday May 11, 2013 @03:52PM (#43697275)

    So let me get this straight: This project won an award yet set-top-box delivery UI's still suck the big one. (Here's a big hint: prevent all the channels I don't ever want to see again from being seen e.g. the 36 friggin' shopping/infomercial channels) Makes you wonder what problems the other entrants attempted to solve.

    • Makes you wonder what problems the other entrants attempted to solve.

      I'm guessing something that scans titles to find shows that may have boobies in them, something that scans reviews to find which shows might have boobies in them, something that scans titles and reviews to find shows that may have boobies in them...

    • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

      A favourite channels list and the ability to block certain channels (e.g. adult channels) is a fairly standard feature on set-top boxes and TVs in the UK. Perhaps the US is different.

      • I'm not talking about blocking. I want to eliminate those channels from the guide completely never to be seen again. Furthermore, surfing is impractical because the refresh rates are so slow.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          That's what I'm talking about. Once you add those channels to the blacklist they are not merely blocked, they simply don't appear in the channel list. IIRC it was a requirement of the UK digital terrestrial TV standard because they knew people would object to some of the adult channel names.

  • So all she developed was a filter plugin? Really? Like these don't exist already?
    I find it extremely hard to believe that no one has developed a plugin like this yet for removing tweets based on hashtags or keywords.

  • Maybe people should self-censor their OT rants?

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