Grace earns a PhD in Mathematics at Yale University–becoming the first woman to do so.
Grace is already commissioned as a lieutenant and assigned to the Bureau of Ordnance Project at Harvard University. Here, she meets Howard Aiken and works with his team to program the Mark I computer–writing a 561-page user manual for it.
Compelled to join the war effort, Grace enlists in the US Navy.
Grace coins the terms “bug” and “debugging” as they relate to computer programming. It’s a result of her team’s findings that an issue with the Mark II was actually caused by a moth trapped on the inside.
She and her team invent the first compiler, which translates mathematical code into machine-readable binary code. This will eventually allow developers to write programs for multiple computers at once.
Grace Hopper is integral to the invention of the programming language COBOL, which became the primary language for business applications as it was easier to use and understand.
Called to return to Naval duty twice during this period, Grace was appointed Rear Admiral - Lower Half before finally retiring in 1986.
Retired from the US military, Grace continues to work in the computer industry and is even awarded the National Medal of Technology in 1991. She died at the age of 85 on January 1, 1992.