Jakow Trachtenberg (17 June 1888 – 1953) was a Russian mathematician who developed the mental calculation techniques called the Trachtenberg system. He was born in Odessa, in the Russian Empire (today Ukraine). He graduated with highest honors from the Mining Engineering Institute in St. Petersburg and later worked as an engineer in the Obukhov arms factory. While still in his early twenties, he became Chief Engineer with 11,000 men under his supervision. The Tsarist government gave him the responsibility of supervising the formation of a well-developed navy.