Barbie becomes a geek. Surprised?


We received an e-mail with a very interesting press release from Mattel Inc. According to a press release, Computer Engineering was the winner of a popularity vote put together on Barbie’s web page.

Barbie wears a fashionable outfit... now, where could we buy this in XS size for BSN* female writers...? ;) There isn’t any way to describe Barbie other than the most successful line of dolls in history of modern culture. Iconic Barbie lived through 125 professions [Computer Engineering is the 126th one], had many friends and partners and ultimately, lives the life of a girl in a dream world.  This multi-billion dollar franchise reached out to its customers through organizing different contests and ultimately producing toys that their customers want.

Barbie’s working outfit features a T-shirt that looks straight from ThinkGeek, smartphone, Bluetooth headpiece, laptop and stylish glasses. Uniform was designed in cooperation with Society of Women Engineers and the National Academy of Engineering, winning a lot of hearts and minds in the process.

In a statement by Nora Lin, President of Society of Woman Engineers said "Girls who discover their futures through Barbie will learn that they ? just like engineers ? are free to explore infi nite possibilities, and that their dreams can
go as far as their imaginations take them," Nora continued with "As a computer engineer, Barbie will show girls that women can design products that have an important and positive impact on people?s everyday lives, such as inventing a technology to conserve home energy or programming a newborn monitoring device."

The latest contest was won by two professions: news anchor i.e. journalist and computer engineer. Interestingly though, both feature computer accessories – silent witness of the change amongst the youngest customers. Thus, the impact of this contest should be thought carefully by Intel, nVidia, AMD and various IT companies. Because if millions of girls want a doll that works in IT industry, you’re looking at potential clients from pre-school onwards.

During our numerous talks with industry executives unfortunately we do learn that they aren’t even considering to open to this field yet.

At the end of the day, Nicholas Negroponte was right when he created netbooks, orienting them towards the children. Even though his idea was taken to create a series of commercial products that don’t exactly target children and the company that backed him first got lost in the process, the point has landed.

As a side note, according to our demographics data, 22% of our readers are women.