Alan Turing Year in Calgary

It’s Alan Turing’s centenary, and we’ve been celebrating it at the University of Calgary with a series of lectures.  This term, we’ve had a talk on the decision problem, one (by Mike Williams) on Turing and early electronic comupters, and one coming up on March 27, by John Ferris, on Alan Turing and codebreaking in WWII.  Yesterday, we screened the biopic Breaking the Code, with Derek Jacobi as Alan Turing (which you can watch on YouTube in its entirety!). The Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences is paying to have the lectures videotaped and the’ll be appearing on as they become available.  The lecture by my distinguised colleague in the Computer Science department, Mike Williams, was just posted a couple of days ago.  Mike is a former President of the IEEE Computer Society, editor in chief of the Annals of the History of Computing, and head curator for the Computer History Museum.  So he knows his history of computing machinery, and gave us a wonderful talk about Turing’s role in the development of early digital computers.  (There’s also a lecture by me on the 1936 paper, but that’s much less interesting.) Thanks to generous funding from the Faculty of Science, we also have nice posters, like the one below, advertising our last talk for the Winter term, by my distinguished colleague in the History Department, John R. Ferris. 

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