PORTLAND, Maine — March is Women’s History Month in the United States, an event that got 207’s tech guy, Rich Brooks—the owner of Flyte New Media in Portland and father of two daughters—thinking about the growing number of women focused on careers in science, technology engineering, and mathematics, or STEM. He got especially curious about the apps that have been designed by women in a field where females are widely outnumbered by males.
What are some of those apps that you’ve perhaps heard of? And who are the women who came up with them? Here are the talking points Rich provided.
Bumble is one of the most well-known apps out there, created by Whitney Wolf. Her IPO for Bumble raised $13 billion and was also named one of Apple's 2021 apps of the year. She previously co-founded Tinder but started this new app with the idea of making online dating a little less creepy. The big change here was that after "matching" with someone, the woman has to make the first move.
Question: Sounds like a nice choice for single people. What are some of the other apps you discovered?
ClassPass is an app for finding local fitness options, either at home or when you travel. Payal Kadakia created this app after she got frustrated searching for local ballet classes. You can use the app to find a wide range of fitness classes now, from cycling to yoga to boxing and more. The app allows you to book classes as well as offers great savings for drop-in rates, which is fantastic if you're traveling.
Question: As you did your research, did you find any apps that were already on your phone?
Yes. In fact, one of the apps has been on my phone for years: Camera+ Legacy and Camera+ 2, developed by Lisa Bettany. While the camera on my iPhone has gotten better with every upgrade, there are still some features and editing options that just aren't available out of the box. Camera+ offers features and filters you can't get on the regular camera app.
Question: Were there any surprises you found? Any other apps you regularly use?
One app that I used pretty regularly until COVID was EventBrite by Julia Hartz. It's an event planning app and website that we use for our annual conference and I think it's the best out there. I can't wait to start using it again.
Question: Are there resources for girls and women here in Maine looking to get into tech, or find other women with similar interests?
I found a few, but I know there are more out there that focus on women and girls interested in STEM, programming, and related fields.