Alan Turing - born on this day 99 years ago
Alan Turing - born on this day 99 years ago
Written by Historian   
Thursday, 23 June 2011

It is just one year until the centenary of Alan Turing who was born on June 23, 1912. Because so much of his work was top secret he was very much an unsung hero during his lifetime.

Alan Turing was a polymath. He wrote his seminal paper On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem when he was in his early twenties. Although it wasn't well received at the time it introduced the important concept of a 'universal machine:

'a computer system that, given enough time and memory, can achieve the same results as any other computer system.



Alan Mathison Turing

(June 23, 1912 - June 7,1954)


During World War II Turing was recruited to help the war effort as a cryptanalyst working at Bletchley Park to break the German Enigma Codes

Alan Turing's name featured on our news pages in the past year when an archive of offprints of his papers went up for auction and were eventually purchased on behalf of the Bletchley Park Museum where they will go on display later this year. A fund raising effort that contributed to this outcome was initiated by Gareth Halfacree and he has posted an illustrated biography of Alan Turing on thinq.


Alan Turing's ACE

Colossus - for Enigma code breaking

Turing's Test, the Loebner Prize and Chatterbots


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John Von Neumann The Great Polymath

John Von Neumann is perhaps the first computer age polymath. He seemed to be capable of getting involved in just about any subject. Not content with inventing game theory, cellular automata and puttin [ ... ]

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