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BG: UK pardons computer pioneer Alan Turing


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So Alan Turing was a mathematical genius  who's work in the 1930's and 1940's laid the groundwork for modern computers.   He also lent his genius to the UK's code breaking team at bletchley park which created arguable the first computer called Colossus to help the Brits in code breaking..   Before Turring the Brits could not break the German enigma machine an encoding device with millions of permutations.   By the end of the war with Turings innovations the Brits were reading German messages faster than the Germans were able to decode them.


After the war Alan Turing was exposed as a homosexual.  He lost his job teaching at a University,  his tenure and his ability to find employment.   At his trial the prosecutor stressed that Turing had not served during WWII,  that he stayed safe while others fought for him.   The work Turing did was still classified so no one at Bletchley park stepped forward to say that Turing was probable one of the most important people to the British War effort.   That his work on enigma helped win the battle of Britain,   the battle of the North Atlantic,  and shortened the war.


Turing was sentenced to chemical castration,  and subsequently killed himself.   It's has been one of the great injustices in history,  for a guy who was one of the most important and influential mathematicians of the 20th century...


UK pardons computer pioneer Alan Turing


LONDON — Britain has tried to make good by one of its most famous sons, posthumously pardoning Alan Turing for a gay sex conviction which tarnished the brilliant career of the code breaker credited with helping win the war against Nazi Germany and laying the foundation for the computer age.

One author said he hoped Tuesday’s symbolic act — the famous mathematician committed suicide more than 50 years ago — would send a message to countries such as India and Russia, where gays can still be prosecuted for expressing their sexuality.

Others say the pardon doesn’t go far enough, noting that thousands of others shared in Turing’s humiliation in the years during which Britain criminalized homosexual behavior. Lawmaker Iain Stewart said the act helped right a massive wrong.



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Yeah, who the **** are they to offer a pardon. And not admit their wrongdoing for every other poor gay man who was terrorized for their sexuality.


Churchill himself said that Turing's work was the single greatest individual contribution to Allied victory in the Second World War. That no-one came forward to protect him shows that homosexuality is apparently a greater threat than Nazism.

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Pardons like these at least raise awareness, and they do mean something to the families. The pardon is obviously too little, but it is not without merit.

It reminds me that there is a large segment of our society who would have us return to such barbaric practices as outlawing homosexuality, and that we cannot let them have their way.

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