If you've ever done your banking on your phone, had an encrypted conversation over the internet or used a search engine, you can thank Cheryl Praeger for that.
The mathematician who this year took out the Prime Minister's Prize for Science has spent four decades researching fundamental mathematics and algorithms that have made modern life infinitely easier.
But winning the country's premier award for science was never her goal. All a young Cheryl wanted to do was keep learning mathematics for as long as she could.
"What I love about mathematics is the way it explains the world. It makes sense of the world. And as our technology advances and our world changes, the mathematical challenges are there," the University of Western Australia's emeritus professor of mathematics said.
One non-mathematical challenge she's tackled is the shortage of female representation in science and maths.
With five of the seven Prime Minister's Prizes for Science awarded to women this year, Prof Praeger hopes it convinces young women a top-tier career in science is possible.
She knows the importance of having visible female role models and mentors firsthand - she met the first female mathematics professor in Australia in the early stages of her career, who inspired her to become the second.
"It's absolutely important - sometimes it's a mentoring relationship and other times it's just knowing that the person is there," she said.
"For me, I saw women and I thought, 'Okay, there are women in mathematics' so I didn't feel alone."
She didn't expect to find herself on stage at the Prime Minister's Science Prize surrounded by women, let alone sharing it with one she had mentored herself.
Elizabeth New won the Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year for creating fluorescent molecules which illuminate the chemistry of diseased cells, and both were thrilled to be recognised alongside each other.
"I've known Cheryl Praeger for a long time, and I've seen her, and so she was always a role model to me. To be honoured with her tonight is pretty special," Dr New said.
"It really is wonderful. There's not quite so many women in these areas, so it's extremely lovely that there's a woman physical scientist who has won the Malcolm McIntosh Prize and a woman mathematician winning the Prime Minister's Prize for Science," Prof Praeger said.
"It's important to make use of all of our talents and if we ignore half of the population, I don't think we're doing our best."
Dr New said the representation of women among the award winners was symbolic of shifting attitudes, and a sign to those who "remain to be convinced" of women's place in the industry.
Both issued a call for young people to take up a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
"We need you. Australia needs you. There are so many creative exciting careers which will be possible using mathematical and scientific skills," Prof Praeger said.
Other recipients of the awards include the creators of an anti-cancer drug, the inventor of headphones that automatically adapt to a person's unique hearing and a world-leading immunologist.
Australian Associated Press