Turing centenary

The Alan Turing Year was celebrated worldwide in 2012. Multiple Turing events were held in several cities. I attended quite a few of those events myself and audio recorded the speeches. My objective here is to compare and contrast claims that computer professionals, historians, and others have made about Turing and our field.

Vindicating Turing and von Neumann?

Dated: 

17 January 2020

Thomas Haigh & Mark Priestley have written a `historical reflections' column entitled “Von Neumann Thought Turing's Universal Machine was 'Simple and Neat.' But That Didn't Tell Him How to Design a Computer” (CACM, January 2020). The negation of the previous sentence is clearly false: That Did Tell Him How to Design a Computer.

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Chapter 1 of Turing Tales

The first chapter of my 2016 book Turing Tales is made available here. I explain my methodological stance on the history of computer science, and introduce the topic of "conflations," which I believe is key to understanding the history of science and technology.

Freely Available: 2015 paper on Turing's legacy

I have made my article on Turing's legacy available (see the attached pdf), since the publisher has now chosen to place it behind a paywall, and because I have retained my copyright.

  • E.G. Daylight. Towards a Historical Notion of 'Turing — the Father of Computer Science'. Special issue of the journal History and Philosophy of Logic, Vol. 36, No. 3, pp. 205-228, 2015. (Published online: 4 November 2015.)

Reading Assignments at Siegen University

Dated: 

30 November 2017

 

Dear Media Students,

Thank you for attending my class today. Please prepare the following two assignments for 14 December 2017. You will be asked to actively participate.

 

ASSIGNMENT 1

Read James Somers's `The Coming Software Apocalypse,' which appeared in The Atlantic on 26 September 2017.

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Hopcroft and Ullman

Dated: 

24 October 2017

Is the history of computer science solely a history of progress? I don't think so. Judge for yourself by reading the present post in which I scrutinize the famous textbooks of John E. Hopcroft and Jeffrey D. Ullman.

Quotes from 1969 and 2007

I start by comparing the following two quotes. The first quote comes from Hopcroft & Ullman, 1969:

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