Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Yvonne Brill, scientist

If you missed this screw up, it was quite amazing. It seems that over the weekend The New York Times thought it would be a good idea to lead an obituary about a famous female rocket scientist with her accomplishments as a wife and mother.

This was the first paragraph:

She made a mean beef stroganoff, followed her husband from job to job and took eight years off from work to raise three children. 'The world's best mom,' her son Matthew said.

Yvonne Brill died last Wednesday. She was 88 years old. One of her important achievements was to have invented in the early 1970s "a propulsion system to help keep communications satellites from slipping out of their orbits."

The system became the industry standard, and it was the achievement President Obama mentioned in 2011 in presenting her with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

Criticism was swift with many wondering if a male rocket scientist would ever be described by his cooking skills. 

Doubt it. 

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  • To be fair, I can't fault her kid with thinking of her as his mother, but I hear Richard Feynman played mean bongos and belonged to a Brazilian Samba band. He did some kind of math stuff too, I think.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 8:02 PM  

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