Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Alan #Turing and the Computing Engine (lecture)

The Pilot ACE 
Most of us are now familiar with Alan Turing's accomplishments: laying the theoretical foundations of computer science, cracking the WWII Enigma codes, and theorising about machine intelligence. Yet most of us  also probably think that Turing was just that, a theoretician. On Thursday a free public lecture by Professors Bob Doran and Brian Carpenter will show that assumption is wrong. Turing could be intensely practical and was intimately involved with the design of the Automatic Computing Engine (ACE) immediately after WWII. Drawing on their 1977 paper, "The other Turing machine" (The Computer Journal 20 (3): 269-279) and more recently revealed documents, Doran and Carpenter will show the influence that Turing continues to have on modern computers and they "will look into the circumstances of how and why he was so long marginalized in the accepted history of practical computing."
    The lecture commences with refreshments at 5.30pm Thursday May 10, 2012, in the Conference Centre of The University of Auckland. If you cannot attend in person you can watch live streaming video or watch on demand after the event. Full details here.