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Gertrude Blanch can be viewed as either the last and most important leader of human computers or one of the first numerical analysts for electronic computers. From 1938 to 1948, she was the technical director of the Mathematical Tables Project, the largest and most sophisticated of the human computing groups. During that period, she organized the literature of computing and numerical analysis. After the Mathematical Tables Project became the Computation Laboratory of the National Bureau of Standards, Blanch went on to develop numerical analysis for the early computers, working first for the Institute for Numerical Analysis, next for the Computer Division of Consolidated Engineering (later ElectroData), and finally for the Air Force's Aeronautical Research Laboratory in Dayton, Ohio.
Date of Publication: Oct.-Dec. 1997