Everyone knows the story of the codebreaker and computer science pioneer Alan Turing. Except when Dermot Turing is asked about his famous uncle, people want to know more than the bullet points of his life. They want to know everything – was Alan Turing actually a codebreaker? What did he make of artificial intelligence? What is the significance of Alan Turing’s trial, his suicide, the Royal Pardon, the £50 note and the film The Imitation Game?
My recent books
X Y & Z: The Real Story of How Enigma Was Broken
X, Y & Z describes how French, British and Polish secret services came together to unravel the Enigma machine. It tells of how, under the very noses of the Germans, Enigma code-breaking continued in Vichy France. And how code-breakers from Poland continued their work for Her Majesty’s Secret Service, watching the USSR’s first steps of the Cold War. Selected by Nature as one of the best books of 2018.
Read More “X Y & Z: The Real Story of How Enigma Was Broken”
The Codebreakers of Bletchley Park
At Bletchley Park, some of Britain’s most talented mathematicians, linguists, and intellectuals were assembled to break Nazi codes. Kept secret for nearly thirty years, we have now come to realise the crucial role that these codebreakers played in the Allied victory in World War II.
The Story of Computing
The Story of Computing explores the history of the technology from the first attempts to use machines to solve mathematical problems to the IT which now pervades everyday life. Featuring eccentric and flamboyant personalities, brilliant discoveries, and fascinating insights into how computing has changed our world, this is the essential guide to a subject that none of us can ignore.
Today, Alan Turing is a well-recognised name, but it was not always so. Until the last few years of the 20th century hardly anyone had heard of him or his achievements. All that changed when the British government permitted the story of Bletchley Park during the Second World War to emerge.
The Bombe Breakthrough
The Bombe Breakthrough is the official guidebook to accompany the Bletchley Park exhibition dedicated to Enigma codebreaking in Hut 11A. The Bombe Breakthrough was based on additional research by Dr David Kenyon, the Bletchley Park historian, and revises and expands on Demystifying the Bombe (2014).
PROF: Alan Turing Decoded
Alan Turing was an extraordinary man who crammed into a life of only 42 years the careers of mathematician, codebreaker, computer scientist and biologist. He is widely regarded as a war hero grossly mistreated by his unappreciative country and it has become hard to disentangle the real man from the story. It is easy to cast him as a misfit, the stereotypical professor. But actually Alan Turing was never a professor, and his nickname ‘Prof’ was given by his codebreaking friends at Bletchley Park.