Today is Alan Turing's 100th Birthday
Today is Alan Turing's 100th birthday. He was autistic. He was gay.
He was important as any other single human in the development of the computer. Google recognizes him with an unusually ambitious "doodle" today:
In a blog post, Google U.K. Engineering Director Andrew Eland describes Turing's life as "one of astounding highs and devastating lows."
"While his wartime code-breaking saved thousands of lives, his own life was destroyed when he was convicted for homosexuality," Eland writes. "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."
He was important as any other single human being in winning World War II. Pamela McCorduck, in a piece called "Alan Turing Saved My Life", writes:
"I won't say that what Turing did made us win the war," his statistical clerk, Jack Good, told me later, as I was researching a book that would be the first history of artificial intelligence, called Machines Who Think, "but I daresay we might have lost it without him."