Kathleen Antonelli

Programmer Kathleen Antonelli

Kathleen "Kay" McNulty Mauchly Antonelli was one of the six original programmers of the ENIAC, the first general-purpose electronic digital computer.
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  • 2006
    Age 85
    Died in 2006.
  • 1997
    Age 76
    She was inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame in 1997 along with the other original ENIAC programmers, and she accepted the induction of John Mauchly into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Akron, Ohio in 2002. Kay died from cancer in Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania on April 20, 2006 at the age of 85.
  • 1948
    Age 27
    Resigning her post at Aberdeen, and without the blessing of her Irish Catholic parents, she married him in 1948.
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  • 1947
    Age 26
    Kay McNulty was transferred to Aberdeen Proving Ground's Ballistics Research Laboratory along with the ENIAC when it was moved there in mid-1947.
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  • 1945
    Age 24
    When Greenie declined to go to Aberdeen for training because she had a nice apartment in West Philadelphia and a 1st alternate refused to cut short a vacation in Missouri, Betty Jean Jennings, the 2nd alternate, got the job, and between June and August 1945 they received training at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in the IBM punched card equipment that was to be used as the I/O for the ENIAC. (Later, Kay's college schoolmate and fellow computer Fran Bilas would join the team of ENIAC programmers at the Moore School, though she did not attend the initial training at Aberdeen.) The computer could complete the same ballistics calculations described above in about 10 seconds, but it would often take one or two days to set the computer up for a new set of problems, via plugs and switches.
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    In June 1945, Kay was selected to be one of its first programmers, along with several other women from the computer corps: Betty Snyder, Marlyn Wescoff, and Ruth Lichterman, and a fifth computer named Helen Greenman (nicknamed "Greenie").
  • 1942
    Age 21
    She graduated with a degree in mathematics in June 1942, one of only a few mathematics majors out of a class of 92 women.
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  • 1921
    Age 0
    She was born Kathleen Rita McNulty in the small village of Creeslough in the Gaeltacht area (Irish-speaking region) of County Donegal, Ireland on February 12, 1921 during the Irish War of Independence.
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