Today we want to celebrate all the women out there, especially those who have found their place in the world of XR!And why? Because women are still not equally represented in the IT industry. A look at last year's SlashData Developer Nation's report shows that only 20% of all people involved in software development are female, the other 80% are - unsurprisingly - male. That's why we started our research by keeping an eye on the women who are shaping the XR scene. We didn't have to search long - and found five fantastic female experts and influencers we want to share with you!
First things first: This list could be never-ending.
Since all women included have a different approach to the industry, our top 5 is more of a collection than a list. There are millions of awesome women out there rocking the tech industry and you can believe us: we had a hard time picking just five of them!We set out to find inspiring ladies, who are not only leaving a footprint on the scene, but also pushing XR forward, establishing it in our daily lives, and sharing their thoughts and ideas on social media for all to see. So, below you will find 5 creative, intelligent, and ambitious women using or pushing Extended Reality in their own way.
„My personal mission is to raise the number of women developers in the field of VR and AR.“
– Vanessa Ching, womensofwearables
Let us introduce: A women who needs no introduction! Vanessa Ching aka Vanessa Radd is founding member of the global XR Alliance. She aims to promote a vibrant XR ecosystem worldwide to push groundbreaking technologies like Augmented Reality or Virtual Reality.
But that’s not her only mission: As a founder of the VR/AR Women in Asia Society, she actively seeks out women at events and ask them to join the community – for a higher representation of women in the XR scene.
Her great ambition in different kind of fields has helped her to rank as one of the global top 3 Augmented Reality influencers by onalytica. She shares her vision on Twitter, Linkedin and on her blog page to spread the word of AR. Give it a read! It’s worth it.
Dr. Helen Papagiannis is one of a kind! She has been specializing in Augmented Reality for about 17 years and since then, she has been sharing the power of AR with the world: TED Talks, published books, researches - her talks and work explore what AR does best, highlighting ways for emerging technologies to expand human intelligence.
One of her books, Augmented Human, was even named the best Augmented Reality book of all time by Book Authority. How cool is that?
Dr. Papagiannis works with the world’s leading corporations advising on technical requirements, trends, and the impact of Extended Realities on business, society, and culture.
And the best of it? She even shares her knowledge on Twitter. She tweets interesting articles about science and tech for her 16,000 followers and was named among the Top 10 influencers of the Digital Media Industry shaping the next wave of computing.
Meet the so called ‘Godmother of the metaverse’: Cathy Hackl.Cathy Hackl is a web 3.0 strategist working with the world's top brands on metaverse growth strategies, virtual worlds fashion and NFTs. She’s CEO and Chief Metaverse Officer of a leading metaverse consultancy, speaker, and above all media personality.
And the list goes on: Cathy Hackl was featured in 60 Minutes+, WSJ, and WIRED's coverage of the metaverse and is a contributor to Forbes. She’s written two books, hosts a Metaverse Marketing podcast and has become one of the top tech voices on LinkedIn: Nearly 100,000 people follow her on LinkedIn and Twitter, where she posts updates and predictions about what’s next for AR.
For the past two years, Cathy Hackl has been ranked as one of the top 10 most influential women in tech by BigThink, and just like the ladies above, ranked in the top 10 of XR influencers by onalytica. Hats off!
Our next top woman of the XR scene has gone a different kind of way: From nurse to cancer researcher to bringing new medical technology to market in Silicon Valley in the mid-90’s, Tamara McCleary is now the CEO of global tech company named Thulium. Her bread and butter these days? Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, data, and analytics to drive smart social in the B2B and enterprise space.
Tamara is also a technology futurist, inspirational keynote speaker, and serves as a unique advisor to leading global tech companies as Amazon, Oracle, SAP, IBM, Verizon and many more.
From all our mentioned ladies in the article, Tamara McCleary is the most famous one on social media: 305,000 Twitter followers look up to her and her content specializing on the future of AI and what’s going on in marketing today. No surprise: She also made it into the top 10 of the greatest XR influencers by onalytica.
Different from the ladies above, Heather Dunaway Smith is not an CEO or awarded expert in the field of Augmented Reality: she is an XR artist who shares her work preferably on the platform TikTok and breaks down the borders between audience and art.
What does that mean? With Extended Reality artworks, users become an active part of the experience and immerses the piece of art instead of passively consuming it. This modern way of storytelling has brought her above 23,000 followers on TikTok and numbers are rising!
But she has also decided to make it her profession: Creating immersive mobile games, virtual cross-media campaigns, visuals for AI-generated experiences or interactive museum exhibits – her list of XR artworks is long! XR artwork can be entertaining, but also efficient when used in Marketing – and that’s exactly what Heather Dunaways Smith shows us. You go, girl!