Saturday, July 21, 2012

#Turing as a Philosopher of Imitation

Over the last month there has been a deluge of blog posts and op-ed columns about Alan Turing. Most have trod the same path; mathematical genius, codebreaker, computer engineer, long distance runner, AI pioneer, eccentric, biologist, homosexual, convict and tragic victim of an uncaring society. However, Ian Bogost, a professor at Georgia Tech, writing for the Atlantic has come up with a fresh perspective. His article called, The Great Pretender: Turing as a Philosopher of Imitation, argues that "If we look at Alan Turing's legacy through [Marshall] McLuhan's lens, a pattern emerges: that of feigning, of deception and interchangeability. If we had to summarize Turing's diverse work and influence, both intentional and inadvertent, we might say he is an engineer of pretenses, as much as a philosopher of them." This is an interesting perspective - highly recommended

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