I was literally the only woman there!
I beg to differ. Yes, I like being obnoxious, but no, that's not why.
I am a woman. I wear skirts, paint my face (you know, that eyeliner thing?0, and have a bigger collection of shoes and earrings than you have web-based accounts. Trust me. (although I'd compete very directly on that front too). But. My life is inextricably linked with technology. I love it, I work with it, in it, I evangelise about it. I'm a woman, I'm a techie, and I'm a geek. A geek? Yes, a tech geek. I loved it, I studied it, I live it. Nobody told me "no, you're a girl, you should give sponge baths". Read on...
In my high school, you chose to specialise in Maths or Biology. In my class, I was the one and only girl who chose Maths... Even our Maths teacher was a man. I did feel singled out, but it wasn't by my classmates. Then, I went on to study Computer Engineering, another place where I was one amongst maybe 20 women, at best, in a classroom of 100-150. I noticed it, but it never meant anything. It was just a statistic. Just like the fact I was one of three students from my high school who made it -at all- into that University. Just a number. It never mattered.
So maybe I'm the dog who speaks... Last night, I went to a "Women in European Business" conference. At the end, there was networking. I walked out of the auditorium onto a floor full of women, elbow-to-elbow, as far as the eye could see. And I didn't know a single one of them. You wouldn't believe how quickly I ran off... Too many women! It just wasn't my element. If I'm a dog who speaks, I am most comfortable around others of my species (tech geeks). Or, you know, men... who are in tech... (sense a trend?)
Reading this, I now wonder if being more comfortable around men (than women) is (as a woman) as singular an occurrence as a dog speaking estonian. Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe it's that technology is my favourite common ground with people, and I'd never properly noticed gender issues. There were statistics, not issues.
I hope that women do not feel discouraged from studying maths, computer science or engineering. Being able to solve problems isn't a male-only thing. It's a being-human thing. Get on with it.
Epilogue: For the record, I do work in IT, will always have an IT-centric role (technology - and its advocacy - is a huge part of my life), and I have never, not even for a second, contemplated going into security.
And trust me, it's not because it's full of men. I think we've already established I prefer that.