Sister Mary Kenneth Keller (PHD, 1965): The First PHD In Computer Science in the US

In 1965, sister Mary Kenneth Keller was the first woman to get a Ph.D in computer science. She believed that the use of computers have boundless capacity for the sharing of information.

Sister Mary worked on developing the BASIC programming language. BASIC is a way of translating the zeroes and ones of computer code into something more intuitive and straightforward. It is a general-purpose, high level programming language which helped broaden computer programming into non maths and science fields, subsequently giving many people their first experience with programming.

A quiet American POW was nicknamed…

A quiet American POW was nicknamed “The Incredibly Stupid One” by his Vietnamese captors. Upon his return to the US, he provided the names of over 200 prisoners of war, which he had memorized to the tune of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm.”

When they threw him out of Vietnam, he came out with 256 names that Joe Crecca had taught him memorized by service, by rank and alphabetically; next to each name he had a dog’s name, kid’s name or social security number to verify the quality of the name which we had picked up by tap code, deaf spelling code or secret notes. He still has those names memorized today and sings them to the tune of “Old MacDonald Has a Farm.” One of our intelligence officers asked him if he could slow the recitation down to make for easier copying. Doug replied “No” that it was like riding a bike, you had to keep moving or you would fall off.