Mary Kenneth Keller

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Mary Kenneth Keller
Mary Kenneth Keller.jpg
Born 1914
Died January 10, 1985
Institutions Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Clarke University
Education Dartmouth College
Alma mater DePaul University
University of Wisconsin–Madison
Thesis Inductive Inference on Computer Generated Patterns.
Known for BASIC

Sister Mary Kenneth Keller (1914?–January 10, 1985) was a nun and computer science pioneer. In June 1965 she, along with Irving Tang, became the first in America to earn a PhD in Computer Science. She earned her degree from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.[1][2][3] Her thesis was titled "Inductive Inference on Computer Generated Patterns."[3]

Life[edit]

Mary Kenneth Keller entered the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary (BVMs) in 1932[4][5] and took her vows with the order in 1940.[4][6] Later she earned a B.S. in Mathematics (1943) and a M.S. in Mathematics and Physics (1953) from DePaul University. In 1958, she began working in the computer science center at Dartmouth College, a men-only institution at the time, where she participated in the development of the BASIC programming language.[4][7]

Keller believed in the potential for computers to increase access to information and promote education.[8] In 1965, after earning her PhD, Keller founded the computer science department at Clarke College in Iowa, which she directed for twenty years.[9] Clarke College now has the Keller Computer Center and Information Services, which is named after her and which provides computing and telecommunication support to Clarke College students, faculty members, and staff.[10] The college has also established the Mary Kenneth Keller Computer Science Scholarship in her honor.[11]

Keller was an advocate for the involvement of women in computing,[4] and helped to establish the Association of Small Computer Users in Education (ASCUE).[12]

Keller wrote four books about computer science.[13]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Keller, Mary Kenneth (1965). Inductive inference on computer generated patterns. Madison, Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin.  (Doctoral Dissertation)
  • Computer graphics and applications of matrix methods : three dimensional computer graphics and projections by Mary K Keller; Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (U.S.); Undergraduate Mathematics and Its Applications Project (U.S.) Lexington, MA : COMAP/UMAP, 1983. U106, U110.[14]
  • Electrical circuits and Applications of matrix methods : analysis of linear circuits Mary K Keller; Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (U.S.); Undergraduate Mathematics and Its Applications Project (U.S.), 1978. U108.[15]
  • Food service management and Applications of matrix methods : food service and dietary requirements by Mary K Keller; Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (U.S.); Undergraduate Mathematics and Its Applications Project (U.S.) Lexington, MA : COMAP/UMAP, 1983. U105, U109.[16]
  • Markov chains and applications of matrix methods : fixed point and absorbing Markov chains by Mary K Keller; Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (U.S.); Undergraduate Mathematics and Its Applications Project (U.S.) Lexington, MA : COMAP/UMAP, 1983. U107, U111.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ London, Ralph L. (15 January 2013). "Who Earned First Computer Science Ph.D.?". Communications of the ACM (blog). Retrieved 1 August 2014. 
  2. ^ Steel, Martha Vickers (11 December 2011), Women in computing: experiences and contributions within the emerging computing industry (PDF) (CSIS 550 History of Computing – Research Paper), archived from the original (PDF) on 23 November 2011, retrieved 1 August 2014 
  3. ^ a b "UW-Madison Computer Science Ph.D.s Awarded, May 1965 - August 1970". University of Wisconsin-Madison. Retrieved 2014-11-09. , PhDs granted at UW-Madison Computer Sciences Department.
  4. ^ a b c d Gürer, Denise (June 2002). "Pioneering Women in Computer Science" (PDF). Communications of the ACM 34 (2). 
  5. ^ Crezo, Adrienne (October 14, 2013). "First Female Ph.D in Computer Science Was a Nun". Real Clear Science. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  6. ^ "CS Prof From Iowa Was a 'Heroine of Computing' -- and a Nun". May 25, 2014. 
  7. ^ London, Ralph L. "Additional Information for “Who Earned First Computer Science PhD?”" (PDF). Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  8. ^ "Sister Mary Kenneth Keller". The Ada Project: Pioneering Women in Computing Technology. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  9. ^ About - National Women's History Museum - NWHM
  10. ^ Computer Center : Clarke University
  11. ^ Mary Kenneth Keller Computer Science Scholarship - Clarke University Scholarships
  12. ^ "Brief Obituary for Sister Mary Kenneth Keller". Annals of the History of Computing 8 (2): 194. 1986. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  13. ^ KELLER, Mary Kenneth - Encyclopedia Dubuque
  14. ^ "Computer Graphics and Applications of Matrix Methods: Three Dimensional Computer Graphics and Projections (UMAP) Sister Mary K. Keller". Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  15. ^ "Electrical Circuits and Applications of Matrix Methods: Analysis of Linear Circuits (UMAP) Sister Mary K. Keller". Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  16. ^ "Food Service Management and Applications of Matrix Methods: Food Service and Dietary Requirements (UMAP) Sister Mary K. Keller". Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  17. ^ "Markov Chains and Applications of Matrix Methods: Fixed Point and Absorbing Markov Chains (UMAP) Sister Mary K. Keller". Retrieved 28 March 2015.