Saturday, June 23, 2012

Today is Alan Turing's 100th Birthday!

Alan Turing was born 100 years today, on June 23, 1912 and Google celebrated the anniversary by having an especially complicated Doodle to honor the father of computing.

Andrew Eland, the Engineering Director of Google UK published a blog post discussing why they decided to honor Turing:
Turing’s life was one of astounding highs and devastating lows. While his wartime codebreaking saved thousands of lives, his own life was destroyed when he was convicted for homosexuality. But the tragedy of his story should not overshadow his legacy. Turing’s insight laid the foundations of the computer age. It’s no exaggeration to say he’s a founding father of every computer and Internet company today.  
Turing’s breakthrough came in 1936 with the publication of his seminal paper “On Computable Numbers” (PDF).  This introduced two key concepts, “algorithms” and “computing machines”—commonplace terms today, but truly revolutionary in the 1930’s.
Turing is one of the openly gay icons of the last century and it is very cool that Google is calling more attention to him, especially during gay pride month.

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