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ALAN TURING – Giant of Computer Science


The advent of cognitive science and artificial intelligence was spearheaded by those who saw the vision that the world will continue advancing and evolving into technology. This is why scientists like Alan Turing have invented ideas that will be remembered by humanity until eternity. One of them is the Turing Machine that will forever be remembered for its achievements.

Today’s story is about Alan Turing, born on June 23rd, 1912. He’s an English mathematician, logician, computer scientist, cryptanalyst, theoretical biologist, and philosopher who played an influential role in computer science. He was born to Ethel Sara and Julius Turing, a Scottish descendant, and started showing signs of genius at a tender age. He graduated from King’s College, Cambridge, where he achieved remarkable feats during his undergraduate years.

Despite his brilliance in mathematics, he was disrespected a lot by teachers who felt he was trying to outshine and outsmart them in their teaching profession. It made his headmaster write to his parent, urging them to tell him to choose between learning and teaching; he was perceived as a waste because he was solely focused on science.

In 1936, during his Ph.D. program at Princeton University, he wrote a paper titled “On Computable Numbers, With An Application to the Entscheidungsproblem,” It was eventually published by the Proceedings of the London Mathematical Society in 1937. This paper became a foundation for computer science. His eureka moment finally arrived when he presented a theoretical typewriter-like computing machine that can solve any problems through simple instructions encoded on a paper tape.

Turing was also influential during the 2nd World War when he designed a counterpart machine that could search into Nazi communication machines after introducing permutations, making it difficult to trace their discussion. His invention aided the British breakthrough into German Naval, which made the war shortened by two years, and millions of death was averted. This technique was termed “Turingery.” He further aired his idea on Artificial intelligence and published his paper titled “Computing and Intelligence” through the quarterly peer-reviewed journal Mind. He asserted that computers would become influential in the future, and because of his prediction coming to pass, he tagged as the father of theoretical computer science and artificial intelligence.

Alan Turing further pursued his interest in mathematics and theoretical biology in 1951, and he published a paper titled “The Chemical Basis of Morphogenesis” in 1952. The paper has been described as the primary model for theoretical biology because of its clear explanation of the reaction-diffusion theory of morphogenesis.

He also introduced Tommy Flowers to the Tunny team, who built the world’s first programmable digital electronic computer that replaced the simpler prior machine. This act led to the immortalization of Alan Turing in the invention world because the world today is now benefitting from what he predicted would happen. Alan Turing will forever be evergreen as long as AI keeps upgrading and relieving human labor stress.


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