Today would be Alan Turing's 100th birthday.
Turing was one of the leaders at Bletchley Park, working as a codebreaker during the war, working on the cryptanalysis of German's Enigma machine. Probably the man who helped England the most when all was but lost to the enemy during WWII, ended up persecuted for its sexual orientation, after the war.
His conviction for indecency cost him his security clearance and job for the Government Communications Headquarters. He was forced to undergo chemical castration. And he commited suicide (although some believe it was an accident).
And to think the top German scientists got free passes to America thanks to Operation Paperclip, while England did nothing but to hunt Turing.
Turing gave us the modern computer, thanks to his design of a stored-program computer.
When I was first introduced to computers, back in early 80s (and I was late to this!) our teacher made a point of showing the class the works of both Turing and Von Neumann.
But most of all, I still believe he is responsible for saving Great Britain's hide during the war. Even with an official apology from PM Gordon Brown (10 September 2009) it's still a shame his name has a record of a conviction for indecency against his name.
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