Computer Components

Learn about the main Components of a Computer!

Alan Turing

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Alan Turing was brought into this world on the 23rd June 1912. He was born in London and his father was in the Indian Civil Service and his parents lived in India until his father's retirement in 1926. Alan went on to study mathematics at Cambridge University, he also taught there, working in the burgeoning world of quantum mechanics. It was at Cambridge that he found proof which states that automatic computation cannot solve all mathematical problems. This concept, also known as the Turing machine, is considered the basis for the modern theory of computation.

In 1936, Turing went to Princeton University in America, returning to England in 1938. He began to work secretly part-time for the British cryptanalytic department, the Government Code and Cypher School. On the outbreak of war he took up full-time work at its headquarters, Bletchley Park.

Here he played a vital role in deciphering the messages encrypted by the German Enigma machine, which provided a vital intelligence for the Allies. He took the lead in a team that designed a machine known as a bombe that successfully decoded German messages. Turing had just invented the first computer, changing the future of humanity forever...

In 1952, Turing was arrested and tried for homosexuality, then a criminal offence. To avoid prison, he accepted injections of oestrogen for a year, which were intended to neutralise his libido. In that era, homosexuals were considered a security risk as they were open to blackmail. Turing's security clearance was withdrawn, meaning he could no longer work for GCHQ, the post-war successor to Bletchley Park.

He sadly committed suicide on 7 June, 1954. On the 7th June, 1954 the world lost yet another great mind.