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April 7, 2016
Kim Todd, an editor and consultant of books about computing pioneer Jean Jennings Bartik, is the author of a new book for young readers about the Northwest Missouri State University alumna.
The book, “Jean Jennings Bartik: Computer Pioneer” was published by Truman State University Press as part of its young reader series about notable Missourians.
Additionally, Todd served as the consultant on a new book about Jennings Bartik. That book, “Computer Scientist Jean Bartik (Stem Trailblazer Bios)” by Jennifer Reed, is scheduled for publication by Lerner Publishing Group Aug. 1.
The books tell the story of Jennings Bartik, who was one of six women selected to program the Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer (ENIAC) at the height of World War II in 1945. The ENIAC was the first successful general-purpose programmable electronic computer.
Jennings Bartik was hired as a “computer” to calculate artillery shell trajectories for Aberdeen Proving Ground. In 1946, she headed a team that modified the ENIAC into the first stored-program electronic computer.
At Northwest, she was the only female math major when she graduated in 1945. She returned to Northwest frequently and was on hand in the spring of 2002 as the University dedicated its Jean Jennings Bartik Computing Museum. That same year, she delivered Northwest’s commencement address, receiving a standing ovation from the audience and an honorary doctorate from the University. In the fall of 2007, she was the Homecoming Grand Marshal. She passed away in March 2011.
Todd is a user consultant in Northwest’s Office of Information Technology and assistant director of the Jean Jennings Bartik Computing Museum, which is housed in the University’s B.D. Owens Library. She also was a co-editor of Jennings Bartik’s 2013 autobiography “Pioneer Programmer: Jean Jennings Bartik and the Computer that Changed the World,” a 2015 USA Best Book Award finalist.
All three titles are available for purchase through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
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