Take part in App-a-thon World Record Attempt

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The National Museum of Computing is partnering BCSWomen to be a venue in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt on Saturday 13 June 2015 from 10am to 4pm.

The family fun day event, which is open to all, will be held at many venues across the UK. It aims to create a new world record and encourage girls to consider a career in IT. At each of the venues, participants will learn from women teachers how to build Android apps and there will be talks, activities and hands-on coding.

Anyone can register now for their free place on this world record attempt, see: http://www.bcs.org/content/conEvent/9365

Jill Clarke, a TNMOC volunteer, member of BCSWomen and leader of the event at TNMOC, said: “This is a great way for everyone to learn about what goes into the making of an app, a feature of computing that most people use every day. We hope lots of people, especially families and girls from Milton Keynes and surrounding areas, will sign up to take part in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at The National Museum of Computing, the historic home of Colossus.”

Gillian Arnold, Chair of BCSWomen, said: “Within the IT profession, there is a real skills shortage in the UK that we need to address now. The BCSWomen App-a-thon event is a great way for lots of people to learn how to code at the same time, engage with those who are considering a career in IT and give every generation an opportunity to try their hand at coding. It is imperative that we encourage more women to enter the IT profession. Women and girls are massive users of technology however, they don’t realise they could be part of the profession that generates that technology. It’s a profession that women are good at. We just need to encourage more women to be part of it!”

Tim Reynolds, Chairman of TNMOC, said: “The BCSWomen App-a-thon event is very much in line with the sorts of activities that the Museum initiates and promotes. Through our highly successful Learning Programme for schools and colleges and activities like the Ocado Technology Weekend Codability and the FUZE projects, we aim to inspire the next generation of computer scientists, especially females whose under-representation is such a loss to the industry.”

A recent BCS survey of IT professionals found that 79% believe the profession would benefit from having more women working in it. Currently, women account for just 16% of IT professionals; a figure that has fallen significantly in recent years.

The BCSWomen App-a-thon event will take place at The National Museum of Computing on Saturday 13th June 2015, between 10am - 4pm. To register for your place on this free event, visit: http://www.bcs.org/content/conEvent/9365

Each person taking part will need to bring a laptop and an android smartphone or tablet. They will learn to build an app using MIT AppInventor, a free, web-based system for creating simple apps by a drag-and-drop coding system. Participants will leave the day with apps they have built and software installed on their own laptops so they can play with it once they get home.

Notes To Editors

The National Museum of Computing

The National Museum of Computing, located on Bletchley Park, is an independent charity housing the world's largest collection of functional historic computers, including the rebuilt Colossus, the world’s first electronic computer, and the WITCH, the world's oldest working digital computer. The Museum enables visitors to follow the development of computing from the ultra-secret pioneering efforts of the 1940s through the large systems and mainframes of the 1950s, 60s and 70s, and the rise of personal computing in the 1980s and beyond.

A pledge by an individual benefactor of £1 million if matched funding is found means that every pound or dollar donated to the Museum will count double. Previous funders of the Museum have included Bletchley Park Capital Partners, Bloomberg, CreateOnline, Ceravision, InsightSoftware.com, Ocado Technology, FUZE, 4Links, Google UK, IBM, NPL, HP Labs, and BCS.

The whole Museum is currently open to the public from 12 noon on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, spring and summer Bank Holidays and during school holidays. The Colossus and Tunny galleries are open daily. Public and Private Guided tours are available and bookable online - see the website or the iPhone app for details. Educational and corporate group visits are available by prior arrangement.

For more information, see www.tnmoc.org and follow @tnmoc on Twitter and The National Museum of Computing on Facebook and Google+. A TNMOC iPhone App is also now available from the iPhone App Store.

Media Contacts

Stephen Fleming for The National Museum of Computing
01635 299116
s.fleming@palam.co.uk

Chloé Dodgson, Press Officer for BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT Tel: +44 (0) 1793 417 417 | Direct Dial: +44 (0) 1793 417 590 | chloe.dodgson@hq.bcs.org.uk | www.bcs.org

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