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Honoring Alan Turing, "Father of Computer Science" 230

alphadogg writes "Google's Vint Cerf and others are spearheading celebrations in Silicon Valley and the UK this month to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Alan Turing's birth. 'The man challenged everyone's thinking,' says Vint Cerf, Google's chief Internet evangelist, in an interview with Network World. 'He was so early in the history of computing, and yet so incredibly visionary about it.' Cerf — who is president-elect of the Association for Computing Machinery and general chair of that organization's effort to celebrate the upcoming 100th anniversary of Turing's birth on June 23 — says that it's tough to overstate the importance of Turing's role in shaping the world of modern computing. Turing's accomplishments included his breakthrough Turing machine, cracking German military codes during WWII and designing a digital multiplier called the Automated Computing Machine."
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Honoring Alan Turing, "Father of Computer Science"

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  • by gestalt_n_pepper ( 991155 ) on Monday June 11, 2012 @04:01PM (#40288863)

    'The man challenged everyone's thinking,' says Vint Cerf, Google's chief Internet evangelist, in an interview with Network World.

    No wonder he was driven to suicide. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Turing#Death [wikipedia.org]

  • Alan Turing (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @04:25PM (#40289105)

    It's so sad on reflection when we look on how we (and I'm British) treated him, just because he was homosexual. I'm afraid that we've lost many greats over the ages because of their peccadillos. At least now for many (but not everywhere) this is not a issue. Now Alan is receiving the recognition he truly deserved, along with Charles Babbage and don't forget Ada Byron.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @06:01PM (#40290019)

    No one owes you their sperm.

    Plus, it wasn't his homosexuality that prevented him from reproducing. Had he lived longer, for all we know, he may have chosen to donate some sperm. But we'll never know, because the effects of stupid laws pushed him to end his life far too prematurely.

  • by serviscope_minor ( 664417 ) on Monday June 11, 2012 @07:34PM (#40290687) Journal

    Von Neumann was much more influential than Turing. Not only did von Neumann do brilliant work in multiple areas of mathematics, he invented modern computer architecture.

    I'm not trying to denigrate von Neumann's achievements but...

    Actually, pretty much all deeply embedded microcontrollers are Harvard architecture. Actually, most modern processers have separate paths from instruction cache and data cache making them much more like Harvard architecture than Von Neumann. That's why self modifying code is hideously slow on the modern CPUs that actually bother to flush things when a write aliasing the instruction cache is made. The other CPUs won't even see the modification.

    Also, Zuse attempted to patent the idea in 1941.

    He also figured out that 1) everything inside the machine should be binary,

    All of Zuse's machines were binary as was Colossus. However, the last serious non-binary computer (Setun) performed very well, notably better than competing binary designs at the time.

  • Re:Don't think so (Score:5, Interesting)

    by samoanbiscuit ( 1273176 ) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:51PM (#40292327)

    Here's some illustrative quotes from the article:

    For example, in spite of claims that persons with same-sex attraction (SSA) are ‘born that way’ and can’t change, there is no scientific evidence that to back up these assertions,[1] and plenty of evidence that SSA is rooted in early negative experiences[2] and that change is possible.[3] Many teenagers who think they might be “gay” discover later they aren’t.

    The last claim is true. Sexuality is confusing, and a lot of teenagers might think they're X when really they're Y, or even Z. Having more knowledge about the spectrum of human sexual behaviour just helps them solve their confusion quicker. Everything else in that paragraph is just plain bullshit.

    Sexually transmitted diseases are rampant in the gay community. Since 1981, 300,000 MSM have died of AIDS, and 6,000 are expected to die this year and every year for the foreseeable future. According to the CDC, in 2008, 17,940 MSM were diagnosed with HIV infections, an increase of 17% from 2005. MSM accounted for 53% of all new infections. MSM are 44 to 86 times more likely to be diagnosed HIV positive than men who don’t.

    Do you know why those health statistics use the term MSM (Men who have Sex with Men)? Because they encompass everything from gay and proud fashion designers who live in San Fransisco and attend pride, right down to conservative [wikipedia.org], anti-gay [wikipedia.org], religious leaders [wikipedia.org], so deep in the closet they might as well be in Narnia. If homosexuals/bisexuals were not forced by public opinion into hiding and marginalizing their sexual behaviour (and despite how gay and free the big cities are, it's still a thing in most countries, even the most progressive ones), it would be safer, much more like heterosexual dating patterns.

    Did you know that as among abstinence only taught straight teens, sex remains just as high, yet condom usage falls much lower, and anal sex rates increase because girls think that preserving their hymens somehow maintains their "virginity".

    This has diverted attention from Savage’s objective: promoting his “It gets better,” campaign, the purpose of which is to encourage confused and troubled teenagers to ‘come out’ and experiment with homosexuality.

    Anyone with basic comprehension skills will realize within moments of reading/watching an "It Get's Better" testimonial that it has NOTHING to do WHATSOEVER with "converting" or "corrupting" young people into trying something they might not normally do, and EVERYTHING to do with telling young LGBT people who need to deal with fuckhead parents and communities with attitudes like yours, that they shouldn't despair, and definitely SHOULD NOT commit suicide, but rather soldier on till they become independent adults, then GTFO that cow town, and into the big city.

"With molasses you catch flies, with vinegar you catch nobody." -- Baltimore City Councilman Dominic DiPietro