Alan Turing: a short biography by Andrew Hodges

This short on-line biography of Alan Turing is based on the entry I wrote for the British Dictionary of National Biography in 1995. The eight parts correspond roughly to the eight sections of my full biography Alan Turing: the enigma.

There are no hyperlinks in the text. For links and for more images, you should go to the corresponding pages of the Alan Turing Internet Scrapbook.


1. Alan Turing's family origins and childhood
2. The inspiration in his early life leading to the Turing Machine
3. The Turing Machine, foundation of modern computer science
4. His critical codebreaking work in the Second World War
5. The emergence of the electronic computer
6. Building a brain at the National Physical Laboratory
7. The first working computer, the Turing Test, and biological growth
8. Alan Turing's arrest, trial, punishment, Cold War situation, new ideas and sudden death.

This is followed by the Oration at Alan Turing's Birthplace that I delivered on 23 June 1998.

© Andrew Hodges


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