App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at TNMOC

Jill Clarke, TNMOC volunteer (pic TNMOC)
Jill Clarke, TNMOC volunteer (pic TNMOC)

The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC) is partnering BCSWomen to be a venue in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt on Saturday 13 June 2015 from 10am to 4pm. The family fun day event, which is open to all, will be held at many venues across the UK. It aims to create a new world record and encourage girls to consider a career in IT. At each of the venues, participants will learn from women teachers how to build Android apps and there will be talks, activities and hands-on coding. Anyone can register now for their free place on this world record attempt, see: http://www.bcs.org/content/conEvent/9365

Jill Clarke, a TNMOC volunteer, member of BCSWomen and leader of the event at TNMOC, said: “This is a great way for everyone to learn about what goes into the making of an app, a feature of computing that most people use every day. We hope lots of people, especially families and girls from Milton Keynes and surrounding areas, will sign up to take part in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at The National Museum of Computing, the historic home of Colossus.”

Gillian Arnold, Chair of BCSWomen, said: “Within the IT profession, there is a real skills shortage in the UK that we need to address now. The BCSWomen App-a-thon event is a great way for lots of people to learn how to code at the same time, engage with those who are considering a career in IT and give every generation an opportunity to try their hand at coding. It is imperative that we encourage more women to enter the IT profession. Women and girls are massive users of technology however, they don’t realise they could be part of the profession that generates that technology. It’s a profession that women are good at. We just need to encourage more women to be part of it!”

(Pic; Computid – Adam Bradley)

Tim Reynold, Chairman of TNMOC, said: “The BCSWomen App-a-thon event is very much in line with the sorts of activities that the Museum initiates and promotes. Through our highly successful Learning Programme for schools and colleges and activities like the Ocado Technology Weekend Codability and the FUZE projects, we aim to inspire the next generation of computer scientists, especially females whose under-representation is such a loss to the industry.” A recent BCS survey of IT professionals found that 79% believe the profession would benefit from having more women working in it. Currently, women account for just 16% of IT professionals; a figure that has fallen significantly in recent years. The BCSWomen App-a-thon event will take place at The National Museum of Computing, Bletchley Park, Milton Keynes on Saturday 13th June 2015, between 10am – 4pm. To register for your place on this free event, visit:http://www.bcs.org/content/conEvent/9365 Each person taking part will need to bring a laptop and an android smartphone or tablet. They will learn to build an app using MIT AppInventor, a free, web-based system for creating simple apps by a drag-and-drop coding system. Participants will leave the day with apps they have built and software installed on their own laptops so they can play with it once they get home.

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