|10:10||Andrew Hodges - Alan Turing: logical and physical|
|Alan Turing is best known as a mathematical logician, but the thrust of his work took him into practical computing, electronic engineering, and the cognitive sciences, as well as applied mathematics and mathematical physics. This talk will introduce Turing's life and character through various episodes illustrating his combination of logical and physical insight. In particular it will discuss the question of the physical background to his definition of computability.|
|11:00||Barry Cooper - The Incomputable Alan Turing|
|The last century saw dramatic challenges to the Laplacian predictability which had underpinned scientific research for around 300 years. Basic to this was Alan Turing's 1936 discovery (along with Alonzo Church) of the existence of unsolvable problems. This talk will focus on incomputability as a powerful theme in Turing's work and personal life, and examine its role in his evolving concept of machine intelligence. It will also trace some of the ways in which important new developments were anticipated by Turing's ideas in logic.|
|13:45||Jack Copeland -- Machine Intelligence: from Bletchley Park to the Turing Test|
|14:55||David Anderson -- Was the Manchester Baby conceived at Bletchley Park?|
In December 1943, Colossus, the world's first programmable
electronic computer was demonstrated under conditions of the
utmost secrecy at the UK code breaking centre at Bletchley Park,
Alan Turing was a leading figure. The machine was designed and
by a team led by Tommy Flowers at the instigation and under the
overall direction of Turing's lifelong friend and mentor Max Newman.
After the war, Newman took up a chair at the University of Manchester where, in 1948, the world's first electronic stored program computer was built under the leadership of Freddie Williams.
This talk challenges the widely accepted notion that the Manchester Baby was a wholly independent development and provides grounds for the intriguing notion that it was instead the direct result of a process of technology transfer involving both Newman and Turing.
|15:45||Jonathan Swinton -- Watching the Daisies Grow: Turing and Fibonacci Phyllotaxis|
|Turing's seminal 1952 paper on morphogenesis is widely known. Less well known is that he spent the last few years of his life further developing his morphogenetic theory and using the new computer to generate solutions to reaction-diffusion systems. Among other things, he claimed at one point to be able to explain the phenomenon of "Fibonacci phyllotaxis": the appearance of Fibonacci numbers in the structures of plants. He never published this work, but did leave a nearly complete manuscript on morphogenesis and lattice phyllotaxis, together with more fragmentary notes on Fibonacci phyllotaxis. I discuss evidence that he developed a number of key ideas close to modern thinking, and tantalising hints that he came very close to a mathematical explanation of how the "daisy grows" into these patterns. More details, and some nice pictures, can be found at www.swintons.net/jonathan/turing.htm|