Photos: The 20 most influential programmers of all time

3. Grace Hopper

Grace Hopper was a computer scientist and rear admiral in the US Navy. She invented the first compiler for a computer programming language, and she was one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer. Hopper popularized the term "debugging" for fixing glitches in computers and emphasized the importance of machine-independent programming languages.

SEE: How to build a successful developer career (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

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By Macy Bayern

Macy Bayern is a former Associate Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She is a graduate from the University of Texas at Austin's Liberal Arts Honors Program.