Carol Shaw is said to be the first female professional video game designer. When she was little, she didn’t enjoy playing with dolls, but preferred playing with her brother’s model railroading set. While at high school, she first used a computer, and enjoyed playing text-based games and was excellent at maths. She gained degrees in Computer Science in the 1970s, when very few women were working in computer science.
Carol was then employed by Atari, Inc., an American video game developer company, to program games for one of their consoles. Carol was responsible for the trickier programming tasks for Atari.
Later, she worked at Activision, where she was the first female designer, and there she created the game ‘River Raid’, where the player flies a fighter jet over the River of No Return, destroying enemy lines. She won multiple awards for this game, and her success allowed her to retire early!
Image credits to: