University of Leeds professor S. Barry Cooper says although computing pioneer Alan Turing died more than 50 years ago, many of his ideas are still influencing computer science today. “He is bringing ideas about computation to different areas and that’s what’s really significant about Turing–he made all these connections and he had a global over-arching view of how computation worked in many different contexts,” says Cooper, who co-authored a book on Turing. The British mathematician is most remembered for his work helping to crack German codes during World War II and what he called “The Imitation Game,” now more commonly known as the Turing Test, a proposed method for determining whether or not a machine has achieved a human level of intelligence. Turing was a strong believer in the inevitability of machine intelligence, and predicted machines would have human-like intelligence by the end of the 20th century. Although this prediction proved incorrect, Turing’s mathematical thinking is in ascendancy with the primacy of algorithms and data science. However, Cooper notes Turing also recognized the power of non-mathematical thinking and that there are some problems beyond its ability to solve. “This is why he is still significant to us, he was thinking about issues that are still issues for us and in very basic ways that are still valid,” Cooper says.
More info here: Tech Republic (11/25/14) Steve Ranger