Do You Know a Woman Invented the Technology That Led to GPS?

Do You Know a Woman Invented the Technology That Led to GPS?

“Woman and driving don’t agree”, the old saying that haunts the collective mind. The proof that it is far from the truth is in the traffic statistics. Female drivers cause much less traffic accidents than men, for example. And not only that. Many women understand mechanics and others give their contribution with inventions. It is the case of Hedy Lamarr, an Austrian Woman who invented the technology that led to GPS.

At the beginning of Second World War II, Lamarr and the composer George Antheil developed a system for missiles orientation by the radio. Although American Navy did not adopt this technology until the 1960s, the principles of their work are now incorporated to the modern Wi-Fi technology, CDMA, Bluetooth and GPS.

After an early actress career in the old Czechoslovakia, she ran away from her husband, a rich Austrian ammunition manufacturer, and  she secretly moved to Paris. There, she met the MGM chief, Louis B. Mayer, who offered her a film contract in Hollywood. She became a movie star from the end of the 1930s to the 1950s.

Lamarr died in 2000, at 85, in her home in Florida, from heart problems. Her inventions took her to the hall of fame.

This publication is part of a series we will release here about women importance in inventions used by the automobile industry. A way to show that women know much more than people think. After all, knowledge doesn’t have gender.

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