Box 7 Andrew Hodges Alan Turing: The Enigma

ISBN 13: 9780099116417

Alan Turing: The Enigma

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9780099116417: Alan Turing: The Enigma


It is only a slight exaggeration to say that the British mathematician Alan Turing (1912-1954) saved the Allies from the Nazis, invented the computer and artificial intelligence, and anticipated gay liberation by decades--all before his suicide at age forty-one. This classic biography of the founder of computer science, reissued on the centenary of his birth with a substantial new preface by the author, is the definitive account of an extraordinary mind and life. A gripping story of mathematics, computers, cryptography, and homosexual persecution, Andrew Hodges's acclaimed book captures both the inner and outer drama of Turing's life.


Hodges tells how Turing's revolutionary idea of 1936--the concept of a universal machine--laid the foundation for the modern computer and how Turing brought the idea to practical realization in 1945 with his electronic design. The book also tells how this work was directly related to Turing's leading role in breaking the German Enigma ciphers during World War II, a scientific triumph that was critical to Allied victory in the Atlantic. At the same time, this is the tragic story of a man who, despite his wartime service, was eventually arrested, stripped of his security clearance, and forced to undergo a humiliating treatment program--all for trying to live honestly in a society that defined homosexuality as a crime.


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Review:

Alan Turing died in 1954, but the themes of his life epitomize the turn of the millennium. A pure mathematician from a tradition that prided itself on its impracticality, Turing laid the foundations for modern computer science, writes Andrew Hodges:

Alan had proved that there was no "miraculous machine" that could solve all mathematical problems, but in the process he had discovered something almost equally miraculous, the idea of a universal machine that could take over the work of any machine.

During World War II, Turing was the intellectual star of Bletchley Park, the secret British cryptography unit. His work cracking the German's Enigma machine code was, in many ways, the first triumph of computer science. And Turing died because his identity as a homosexual was incompatible with cold-war ideas of security, implemented with machines and remorseless logic: "It was his own invention, and it killed the goose that laid the golden eggs."

Andrew Hodges's remarkable insight weaves Turing's mathematical and computer work with his personal life to produce one of the best biographies of our time, and the basis of the Derek Jacobi movie Breaking the Code. Hodges has the mathematical knowledge to explain the intellectual significance of Turing's work, while never losing sight of the human and social picture:

In this sense his life belied his work, for it could not be contained by the discrete state machine. At every stage his life raised questions about the connection (or lack of it) between the mind and the body, thought and action, intelligence and operations, science and society, the individual and history.

And Hodges admits what all biographers know, but few admit, about their subjects: "his inner code remains unbroken." Alan Turing is still an enigma. --Mary Ellen Curtin

From the Back Cover:


"One of the finest scientific biographies I've ever read: authoritative, superbly researched, deeply sympathetic, and beautifully told."--Sylvia Nasar, author of A Beautiful Mind


"A captivating, compassionate portrait of a first-rate scientist who gave so much to a world that in the end cruelly rejected him. Perceptive and absorbing, Andrew Hodges's book is scientific biography at its best."--Paul Hoffman, author of The Man Who Loved Only Numbers


"A remarkable and admirable biography."--Simon Singh, author of The Code Book and Fermat's Enigma


"A first-rate presentation of the life of a first-rate scientific mind.... It is hard to imagine a more thoughtful and compassionate portrait of a human being."--from the Foreword by Douglas Hofstadter


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Descrizione libro Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 1992. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. A new edition to celebrate Alan Turing s centenary, includes a new foreword by the author and a preface by Douglas Hofstadter. Alan Turing was the extraordinary Cambridge mathematician who masterminded the cracking of the German Enigma ciphers and transformed the Second World War. But his vision went far beyond this crucial achievement. Before the war he had formulated the concept of the universal machine, and in 1945 he turned this into the first design for a digital computer. Turing s far-sighted plans for the digital era forged ahead into a vision for Artificial Intelligence. However, in 1952 his homosexuality rendered him a criminal and he was subjected to humiliating treatment. In 1954, aged 41, Alan Turing committed suicide and one of Britain s greatest scientific minds was lost. Codice libro della libreria AAZ9780099116417

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Descrizione libro Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 1992. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. A new edition to celebrate Alan Turing s centenary, includes a new foreword by the author and a preface by Douglas Hofstadter. Alan Turing was the extraordinary Cambridge mathematician who masterminded the cracking of the German Enigma ciphers and transformed the Second World War. But his vision went far beyond this crucial achievement. Before the war he had formulated the concept of the universal machine, and in 1945 he turned this into the first design for a digital computer. Turing s far-sighted plans for the digital era forged ahead into a vision for Artificial Intelligence. However, in 1952 his homosexuality rendered him a criminal and he was subjected to humiliating treatment. In 1954, aged 41, Alan Turing committed suicide and one of Britain s greatest scientific minds was lost. Codice libro della libreria AAZ9780099116417

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Descrizione libro Vintage, 1992. Condizione libro: New. Alan Turing was the extraordinary Cambridge mathematician who masterminded the cracking of the German Enigma ciphers and transformed the Second World War. But his vision went far beyond this crucial achievement. This book tells his story. Num Pages: 768 pages, 1. BIC Classification: 1DBKE; 2AB; BG; DSK; U. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 131 x 198 x 41. Weight in Grams: 572. . 1992. New Ed. Paperback. . . . . Codice libro della libreria V9780099116417

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Descrizione libro Vintage. Condizione libro: New. Alan Turing was the extraordinary Cambridge mathematician who masterminded the cracking of the German Enigma ciphers and transformed the Second World War. But his vision went far beyond this crucial achievement. This book tells his story. Num Pages: 768 pages, 1. BIC Classification: 1DBKE; 2AB; BG; DSK; U. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 131 x 198 x 41. Weight in Grams: 572. . 1992. New Ed. Paperback. . . . . Codice libro della libreria V9780099116417

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Descrizione libro Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Condizione libro: new. BRAND NEW, Alan Turing: The Enigma, Andrew Hodges, A new edition to celebrate Alan Turing's centenary, includes a new foreword by the author and a preface by Douglas Hofstadter. Alan Turing was the extraordinary Cambridge mathematician who masterminded the cracking of the German Enigma ciphers and transformed the Second World War. But his vision went far beyond this crucial achievement. Before the war he had formulated the concept of the universal machine, and in 1945 he turned this into the first design for a digital computer. Turing's far-sighted plans for the digital era forged ahead into a vision for Artificial Intelligence. However, in 1952 his homosexuality rendered him a criminal and he was subjected to humiliating treatment. In 1954, aged 41, Alan Turing committed suicide and one of Britain's greatest scientific minds was lost. Codice libro della libreria B9780099116417

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