3. Margaret “The Human Calculator” Hamilton. She led the MIT team assigned to develop code for Apollo 11’s on-board flight software. She was so brilliant, and so accurate, that she was asked to check the math performed by MIT’s computers. This, by itself, is remarkable. It gets better, of course: while preparing for the Apollo 11 flight, Hamilton urged her (male) superiors that the mission required additional back-up code, to act as a fail-safe in case something went wrong. She was criticized and ordered to do no such thing, because the astronauts “were trained never to make a mistake.”
Defying orders, Hamilton programmed the code anyway.
And wouldn’t you know it? Minutes before Apollo 11 landed on the surface of the moon, something did go wrong. An alarm was triggered and the moon landing was in peril. It was Hamilton’s code that saved the mission. Without her, we likely would not have landed on the moon.
4. Julie D’aubigny had a fascinating life. She was a duelist and opera singer in the late 1600s that dressed as a man but didn’t try to hide her gender. She got in many duels with men over insults or other matters and became lovers and friends with a young noble she beat in a duel. One time, when her girlfriend’s parents decided they didn’t want their daughter hanging around Julie anymore, they sent her to live in a convent. So of course Julie decided to break in, fake her girlfriend’s death, and run off together into the night.
Her life reads more like an action/drama film than a biography, chick was badass.