There are many parallels between the lives of Eduardo Paolozzi and Alan Turing and an extraordinary interplay between the mechanical and creative aspects of their lives and skills is revealed in The Turing Collection.
Alan Turing (1912 – 1954) was the founder of computer science and the computer, as we know it today. He helped to crack the Enigma code in the Second World War and he initiated our understanding of how computing has evolved to the infrastructure around us today.
The Enigma was the Germans innovative constantly changing code system and it took a new type of machine ‘the Bombe’ to break it – an early mechanical version of the digital computer.
Alan Turing famously developed the ‘Turing Test’ and he was also a pioneer of the Artificial Intelligence programme and non-linear dynamics in biology. Prejudices and homophobia in society of the last century led to a criminal conviction and the ultimate death of this hero of many levels. Belatedly recognised as inhumane treatment, an apology was given by the British Prime Minister on behalf of the government 55 years after his death. A Royal Pardon was given by the Queen in 2013.
“Dr Alan Turing was an exceptional man with a brilliant mind”. His ideas, developed in the first half of the last century, continue to shape the world of academia, business, media, technology and communications.
Turing is a true icon of the 20th century, a great forerunner in the field of computers. His ultimate goal was to merge the fields of biology, mathematics and computers to create the ultimate – a thinking machine. More and more people now believe that his ‘outlandish’ prediction will become commonplace during this, the 21st century.