Author, Journalist, Writer
Liza Mundy, author of the New York Times bestseller Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II, will give an entertaining and illuminating presentation showing how the data literacy lessons from a historical crisis apply to the present day. This riveting discussion will show how--during one of the most acute global crises humanity has ever known--thousands of female codebreakers managed and made sense of massive amounts of data. It will pinpoint how the American codebreakers innovated on the fly, translating and disseminating vital communications; honing their own data literacy; cooking up deception plans to trick the enemy; doing what we, today, would call “hacking,” as well as developing our own unbreakable codes and cybersecurity systems. Complete with historical photos showing vast rooms and assembly lines of female codebreakers using pencils, graphs, grids, punch cards, encryption machines, and early computer systems, the talk will show how these early data managers prioritized, persevered, and prevailed, setting an example of data literacy that is astonishingly relevant to workplaces and systems of the modern day. Their brilliant data management helped the ensure that the right side won; they saved countless lives and shortened the war; and it is thanks to them, literally, that we are all here today.