Alan Turing

The Early Years

alan turing

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We owe so much to Alan Turing. It was only in more recent times when it was appreciated what he did. Station X was of course secret for many years and therefore the work that he carried out there in code breaking the Enigma and developing the Colossus was equally kept secret.

Station X was also known as Bletchley Park and is well worth a visit. See website:

Alan Turing is said to be the person that invented computers as we know them, working at Manchester University on the Mark 1 computer. He was so far ahead of his time that his work on artifical intelligence is still considered ground breaking and maybe in years to come we will only then start to understand how great a mind and person Alan Turing was.

Alan Turing early years and education

Alan Turing was born at 2 Warrington Crescent, Maida Vale, near Paddington Station, London in 1912 on June 23rd. This building became the Colonnade Hotel at a later date.

Turing was educated at St Michael's School, St Leonards-On-Sea and then from the age of fourteen at Sherborne School in Abbey Road, Dorset. Alan went onto King's College Cambridge to read Mathematics becoming a fellow in 1935 and writing his celebrated paper On Computable Numbers with an application to the Entscheidungsproblem (the problem of decidability).

alan turing

Blue plaque of Alan Turing's
birthplace in Maida Vale

The Colonnade Hotel is near to Little Venice; a beautiful area of water where Regent's Canal and the Grand Union meet.

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Colonnade Hotel - birth place of Alan Turing

alan turing

Colonnade Hotel

The Turing Machine the paper; On Computable Numbers

The writing of Alan Turing's paper led to the creation of the Turing Machine; a mechanical device which in a systematic way could carry out a precise task. The concept of the Turing Machine was that each Turing Machine would use mechanisms in a similar manner relating to computer related concepts of input, output, memory, coded programs etc not dissimilar to von Neumann's computer of 1945.

Princeton Institute for Advances Study, New Jersey, USA

From 1936-1938 Alan Turing studied at Princeton, New Jersey gaining a Ph.D. with his dissertation titled Systems of Logic based on Ordinals and studying under mathematician and logician Alonzo Church . At Princeton Alan Turing met with von Neumann who was similarly a fantastic mathematician who later published his own paper which was said to be based on a number of Alan Turing's ideas.

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Alan Turing back at Cambridge

Alan Turing returned to Cambridge in 1938 and continued his interest in making computing devices. The Government Code and Cypher School soon contacted Alan Turing to help in their task to break the German Enigma codes.

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Should I have a Structural Survey?

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Oxford University

Cambridge University


Whilst some of this article is written from general knowledge here are some websites that we think will be of interest to you regarding Alan Turing some of which we have used for information which we would like to give them credit for:;;;;;;;

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