Mathematical winters: Ada Lovelace, 200 years on

Christmas 1840, cold and crisp. The fashionable and wealthy Lovelace family are learning to skate, the four year-old Byron (junior, the grandson of Lord Byron) pushing a chair along the ice to keep his balance. Driven inside by the cold, his mother retires to her study and her lessons in advanced calculus. She writes to her tutor: “This is very mathematical weather. When one cannot exercise one’s muscles out of doors, one is peculiarly inclined to exercise one’s brains in-doors.” Then she plunges into a detailed discussion of the convergence of series.
Her name is Ada, Countess of Lovelace.
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