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The computer has revolutionized the modern age of communication and has touched every part of modern life. Without a doubt, the development of the computer was a massive leap forward in humankind's progress and will stand as one of the twentieth century's greatest achievements. But how many of us know how it really works? "Turing And The Computer" offers a brilliant encaps The computer has revolutionized the modern age of communication and has touched every part of modern life. Without a doubt, the development of the computer was a massive leap forward in humankind's progress and will stand as one of the twentieth century's greatest achievements. But how many of us know how it really works? "Turing And The Computer" offers a brilliant encapsulation of the groundwork that led to the invention of the computer as we know it, and an absorbing account of the man who helped develop it, only to be largely forgotten after his death. Eccentric and principled, Turing would lay aside a brilliant career in mathematics to serve his country by breaking German codes during the Second World War. Openly homosexual, he would later be put on trial on indecency charges and forced to undergo hormone treatments that wrecked his body and his spirit. But the modern machine he helped create lives on.Concise and thoroughly compelling, "Turing And The Computer" is for all those curious about the philosophy and mechanics behind the now indispensable computer, and for anyone awed by the spark of invention that inspires its birth.


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The computer has revolutionized the modern age of communication and has touched every part of modern life. Without a doubt, the development of the computer was a massive leap forward in humankind's progress and will stand as one of the twentieth century's greatest achievements. But how many of us know how it really works? "Turing And The Computer" offers a brilliant encaps The computer has revolutionized the modern age of communication and has touched every part of modern life. Without a doubt, the development of the computer was a massive leap forward in humankind's progress and will stand as one of the twentieth century's greatest achievements. But how many of us know how it really works? "Turing And The Computer" offers a brilliant encapsulation of the groundwork that led to the invention of the computer as we know it, and an absorbing account of the man who helped develop it, only to be largely forgotten after his death. Eccentric and principled, Turing would lay aside a brilliant career in mathematics to serve his country by breaking German codes during the Second World War. Openly homosexual, he would later be put on trial on indecency charges and forced to undergo hormone treatments that wrecked his body and his spirit. But the modern machine he helped create lives on.Concise and thoroughly compelling, "Turing And The Computer" is for all those curious about the philosophy and mechanics behind the now indispensable computer, and for anyone awed by the spark of invention that inspires its birth.

30 review for Turing and the Computer

  1. 5 out of 5

    César Bustíos

    Había una forma de saber si una máquina era inteligente o no: colocarla tras una pantalla y dejar que un ser humano le hiciera preguntas. La persona podría decidir entonces, basándose en respuestas escritas, si estaba tratando con un ser inteligente o una simple máquina. ¿Podría una máquina engañar a un ser humano en el «juego de la imitación» que Turing proponía (conocido actualmente como el «test de Turing»)? Un vistazo rápido a la vida de uno de los padres de la Informática y los ordenadores. Había una forma de saber si una máquina era inteligente o no: colocarla tras una pantalla y dejar que un ser humano le hiciera preguntas. La persona podría decidir entonces, basándose en respuestas escritas, si estaba tratando con un ser inteligente o una simple máquina. ¿Podría una máquina engañar a un ser humano en el «juego de la imitación» que Turing proponía (conocido actualmente como el «test de Turing»)? Un vistazo rápido a la vida de uno de los padres de la Informática y los ordenadores. Desde sus primeros días en la escuela como un alumno díscolo, tartamudo, antisocial y desinteresado, hasta sus últimos días en Cambridge luego de haber sido estúpidamene detenido por "indecencia grave" debido a una de sus relaciones homosexuales. Contribuyó en campos como el criptoanálisis, matemática, morfogénesis, lógica y ciencias de la computación. Desempeñó un papel importantísimo durante la segunda guerra mundial ayudando a descrifrar los códigos Enigma de la Alemania nazi. Tal vez uno de sus trabajos más importantes fue Computing machinery and intelligence, publicado en 1950 y en donde insistía que era posible enseñarle a un ordenador a pensar por sí mismo (las bases de lo que ahora se conoce como Inteligencia Artificial).

  2. 4 out of 5

    Clif

    This 100 page book can be read easily in one day. It is part of "The Big Idea" series about giants in science; Newton, Einstein and Hawking at the time of publication in 1997. It bears a resemblance to the "A Brief Introduction to..." series but is simpler. One can whiz through this book as one would a work of fiction. Strathern's prose is direct and conversational. Turing was a genius, but a tragic character who was uneasy in his own skin. Homosexual when it was considered criminal in England to This 100 page book can be read easily in one day. It is part of "The Big Idea" series about giants in science; Newton, Einstein and Hawking at the time of publication in 1997. It bears a resemblance to the "A Brief Introduction to..." series but is simpler. One can whiz through this book as one would a work of fiction. Strathern's prose is direct and conversational. Turing was a genius, but a tragic character who was uneasy in his own skin. Homosexual when it was considered criminal in England to act on such desires, his necessity to the Allied war effort in the 1940's and tendency to stay to himself kept him out of trouble, but in the end his inability to find a lasting relationship with another man and the cruel drug treatment he was forced to undergo after being reported to the state for being gay ended in suicide. Paul Strathern leaves no doubt that he holds the norms of British society in the middle of the 20th century in contempt while at the same time relating how Turing's bizarre behavior made the man difficult to deal with. Turing was the man who came up with a machine that could decode the Nazi Enigma messages thought with good reason to be undecipherable by the Germans. Turing is also considered to be the father of modern computing. Toward the end of his life he began to think of himself as a computer in biological form. He is famous for "the Turing test" used to determine if a computer can pass for human - have people interact with the computer behind a curtain and see if they believe they are dealing with another human. Profound ideas that occurred to Turing are described simply but accurately with just the right amount of background information to indicate how advanced they were. We owe him much, as we do many brilliant minds that have been obsessed to the point of distorting personal life beyond the ability to find much if any happiness in the company of others. A sharp beamed spotlight can pick out detail that a diffuse light would not allow to be seen. So it is with the mind where concentration in a narrow field allows discoveries that the thought of another mind, spread more broadly, will miss. I am going to look for the other books in this series. There is something to be said for simplification.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cudeyo

    Obra divulgativa que mezcla los principios del ordenador desde el ábaco, de forma resumida, con una breve biografía del matemático Alan Turing. Como ya esperaba, me ha resultado más interesante la parte biográfica que la matemática.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Geo

    "¿Qué significa ser humano?, ¿qué es exactamente la inteligencia humana? (...) ¿Podría una máquina adquirir estas cualidades?, ¿cómo distinguimos una inteligencia humana de la inteligencia de una máquina?" Lectura amena y sencilla, sin ahondar en complejidades matemáticas, que menciona algunas de las personas e inventos más relevantes que contribuyeron al desarrollo de la computadora como la conocemos. Enfocándose especialmente en Alan Turing, ese genio matemático (además de atleta de nivel c "¿Qué significa ser humano?, ¿qué es exactamente la inteligencia humana? (...) ¿Podría una máquina adquirir estas cualidades?, ¿cómo distinguimos una inteligencia humana de la inteligencia de una máquina?" Lectura amena y sencilla, sin ahondar en complejidades matemáticas, que menciona algunas de las personas e inventos más relevantes que contribuyeron al desarrollo de la computadora como la conocemos. Enfocándose especialmente en Alan Turing, ese genio matemático (además de atleta de nivel casi olímpico) tímido y solitario que se considera hoy en día como uno de los padres de la informática y lo que conocemos ahora como inteligencia artificial.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Mahdi Hoseinnejad

    در ميان ريويو ها متوجه شدم كه انتشارات مازيار هم اين كتاب را ترجمه و چاپ كرده كه خوب ترجمه نشده. نسخه اي كه من از اين كتاب مطالعه كردم با عنوان آشنايي با تورينگ ترجمه ي جواد ثابت نژاد است كه بسيار خوب و قابل فهم بود. بسيار فشرده و خلاصه وار به مهم ترين كارها و زندگي الن تورينگ اشاره كرده كه بيشتر از يكي-دو ساعت وقت شما را نمي گيرد. قطعا كتاب هاي ديگري نيز از اين نويسنده خواهم خواند. خصوصا آشنايي با فيلسوفان.

  6. 4 out of 5

    William Oliveira

    Um livro excelente para quem deseja conhecer mais sobre a história da computação e ainda conhecer mais do que é dito por aí sobre Turing. Seus problemas pessoais, seus anseios, medos, conquistas e um pouco mais até sua triste morte devido ao preconceito.

  7. 5 out of 5

    yaritza

    Considering how short the book is, I found that is served as a good introduction to Turing’s life, as well as covering some of the major points in the history of computers. I’m the first to admit that most of the mathematical topics went over my head, but Strathern does simplify some loaded topics using very accesible language. All in all, it did leave me wanting to know more, but for that I am looking forward to Alan Hodges’ biography of Turing. The book accomplished what I believe it set out t Considering how short the book is, I found that is served as a good introduction to Turing’s life, as well as covering some of the major points in the history of computers. I’m the first to admit that most of the mathematical topics went over my head, but Strathern does simplify some loaded topics using very accesible language. All in all, it did leave me wanting to know more, but for that I am looking forward to Alan Hodges’ biography of Turing. The book accomplished what I believe it set out to do, which was summarize Turing’s contributions to academia and World War II, as well as his legacy in the world of computers.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Juanjo

    Este libro me ha hecho conocer muy bien la vida de Turing y además me ha hecho entender los errores biográficos en la película de Turing, al final del mismo hay recomendaciones de lectura en la que especialmente la primera no pienso dejar de leer. Es un libro corto que da una muy buena reseña de la vida de este genio, sus triunfos y sus desgracias.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Johan Kwok

    For a book devised to be readable in 90 minutes and with the goal to pack as much information as possible, I think it was worth it read, a nice panorama of Turing's life. Read this in one go, at a friend's house, late night. For a book devised to be readable in 90 minutes and with the goal to pack as much information as possible, I think it was worth it read, a nice panorama of Turing's life. Read this in one go, at a friend's house, late night.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Luis Natividad

    Le pondré solo 4 estrellas por que me dio el nombre del primer libro de la biografía de Alan turing que es "enigma".. Y por que es un libro resumido pero que habla lo que fue la vida de este gran inventor en temas muy puntuales.. .. Le pondré solo 4 estrellas por que me dio el nombre del primer libro de la biografía de Alan turing que es "enigma".. Y por que es un libro resumido pero que habla lo que fue la vida de este gran inventor en temas muy puntuales.. ..

  11. 5 out of 5

    iman

    this was one of my favorite books by paul strathern (in this collection). i have learned quite a few things from this book. must-read if you like technology.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Héctor Barranco

    Una muy breve biografía del genio de Alan Turing y el desarrollo de los primeros ordenadores, desde el ábaco. Es una lectura muy ligera pero sirve como punto de partida para conocer más sobre Turing.

  13. 5 out of 5

    John Lau

    Un resumen de la bibliografia que menciona, me gusta que trate el tema de la homosexualidad de Turing.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Julio Biason

    (Em 90 minutos ou um pouco mais, no meu caso). Turing sempre foi uma figura representativa na informática: sabe-se que boa parte das suas conjecturas são o que tornaram os computadores o que são (a boa definição de "máquina de Turing") e seus questionamentos continuam sendo questinamentos válidos (ainda o "teste de Turing"). E conhece-se que seu trabalho na sua máquina acabou resolvendo o problema de decifrar o Enigma, a máquina criptográfica utilizada pelos nazistas. E sabe-se que foi preso e so (Em 90 minutos ou um pouco mais, no meu caso). Turing sempre foi uma figura representativa na informática: sabe-se que boa parte das suas conjecturas são o que tornaram os computadores o que são (a boa definição de "máquina de Turing") e seus questionamentos continuam sendo questinamentos válidos (ainda o "teste de Turing"). E conhece-se que seu trabalho na sua máquina acabou resolvendo o problema de decifrar o Enigma, a máquina criptográfica utilizada pelos nazistas. E sabe-se que foi preso e sofreu castração química por ser homossexual. Isso tudo pode ser visto, inclusive, no cinema. Mas nem a apresentação feita nas faculdades nem o filme mostram exatamente o que estava acontencendo: Os avanços da época por Pascal, Schickard, Leibniz, Jacquard, Babbage e Boole; a construção do MADAM -- cuja existência nunca é contada por causa do ENIAC; a aparência de Turing (cuja descrição deixa a entender que sua foto clássica de cabelos cortados e barba feita era uma anomalia); seu comportamento promíscuo, em que saída a noite para procura de novos jovens homossexuais... Essas partes são contadas no livro em questão, que é um resumo do livro escrito por Andrew Hodges.

  15. 4 out of 5

    York

    No voy a mentir, Alan Turing: The Enigmaes la biografía definitiva sobre este genio, sin embargo este libro, que en realidad se siente como un artículo de revista extendido, es bastante ameno y sencillo. Sin meterse en complejidades matemáticas y muy preocupado por meter harto antecedentes para contextualizar la magnitud de las aportaciones de Turing, este texto es bastante recomendable para aquellos que se quedaron con ganas de conocer más sobre este muchacho a raíz de The Imitation Game. Lo más No voy a mentir, Alan Turing: The Enigmaes la biografía definitiva sobre este genio, sin embargo este libro, que en realidad se siente como un artículo de revista extendido, es bastante ameno y sencillo. Sin meterse en complejidades matemáticas y muy preocupado por meter harto antecedentes para contextualizar la magnitud de las aportaciones de Turing, este texto es bastante recomendable para aquellos que se quedaron con ganas de conocer más sobre este muchacho a raíz de The Imitation Game. Lo más me gustó es el retrato solitario de Turing y su necesidad por conectar con algo, lo que fuera, aunque se tratara de una maquina, al grado tal que prefirió programar una computadora para que le escribiera cartas de amor en lugar de una hoja de Excel.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Hesam

    ترجمه ی این کتاب به عنوان فصلی از کتاب شش نظریه ای که جهان را تغییر داد آورده شده است. من تا کنون دو تا کتاب از انتشارات مازیار خوانده ام که علیرغم موضوع و محتوای خیلی خوب کتاب ها، هردو قربانی ترجمه ی افتضاح و عدم ویراستاری بوده اند... علی ای حال، خوبی ِ این کتاب رهنمون کردن خواننده به مطالعه ی موضوعات جالبتر است، از جمله شباهت نتایج حاصل از ماشین تورینگ و قضیه ناتمامیت گودل ترجمه ی این کتاب به عنوان فصلی از کتاب شش نظریه ای که جهان را تغییر داد آورده شده است. من تا کنون دو تا کتاب از انتشارات مازیار خوانده ام که علیرغم موضوع و محتوای خیلی خوب کتاب ها، هردو قربانی ترجمه ی افتضاح و عدم ویراستاری بوده اند... علی ای حال، خوبی ِ این کتاب رهنمون کردن خواننده به مطالعه ی موضوعات جالبتر است، از جمله شباهت نتایج حاصل از ماشین تورینگ و قضیه ناتمامیت گودل

  17. 5 out of 5

    Gina

    There was not as much about Turing as you might expect. About a third of the book is on the history of computing, and I don't think that much background was necessary to appreciate Turing's accomplishments. There was not as much about Turing as you might expect. About a third of the book is on the history of computing, and I don't think that much background was necessary to appreciate Turing's accomplishments.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Julia

    Glosses over some big advancements (i.e., the author writes about cracking the Enigma code over approximately two paragraphs), but otherwise gives a good overview of Turing's life. The intro is interesting as well, talking about calculating machines pre-20th century. Glosses over some big advancements (i.e., the author writes about cracking the Enigma code over approximately two paragraphs), but otherwise gives a good overview of Turing's life. The intro is interesting as well, talking about calculating machines pre-20th century.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Yuno

    Muito bom, o livro fala sobre a história do computador(analógico) até o turing. Me impressionei com o final. Um dos livros que peguei na biblioteca da escola que realmente me agradou.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Palimp

    Divulgación acerca de la historia de los ordenadores y de una de sus figuras claves, Turing. Correcta pero no excesivamente brillante.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Márcio Adão

    Um resumo muito bom da vida de Turing, ótimo para quem quer conhecer a história e se aprofundar sobre o assunto.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Luís Garcia

    (Lido em Lampang, Tailândia)

  23. 4 out of 5

    Salutino

    Es parte de una colección para conocer brevemente de estos personajes de la historia, es importante seguir las recomendaciones que hace para aunar más sobre ellos.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    It's an easy read. It definitely helped me on my first programming test. I love learning the history of computers. Quite interesting. It's an easy read. It definitely helped me on my first programming test. I love learning the history of computers. Quite interesting.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Marco Pozzana

  26. 5 out of 5

    Antonio

  27. 4 out of 5

    Isa Brown

  28. 5 out of 5

    Robert

  29. 5 out of 5

    Guto Sanches

  30. 5 out of 5

    Suzanna

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