Turing in Context

King’s College

Cambridge, England

18-19 February 2012


http://www.math.uni-hamburg.de/home/loewe/[email protected]/





In the year 2012, the academic world will celebrate Alan Turing’s

(1912-1954) birth centenary as the Alan Turing Year. Turing, who was on the Time Magazine’s list of the 100 most important people of the 20th century, has revolutionized several fields by his seminal contributions to the theory of computation (the Turing machine), the practical applications of that theory by building the first digital computers, cryptography, and artificial intelligence (the Turing test). Turing’s special role for science in the 20th century and his sad premature death made him an icon whose recognition goes beyond his immediate scientific impact (consider, e.g., the British Prime Minister’s public apology to Turing in September 2009).


The event “Turing in Context” will highlight the many contributions of Alan Turing for a general academic audience, in particular for undergraduate and postgraduate students of all fields, and put these contributions in a historical context. Our seven speakers will cover topics such as British war intelligence, discrimination laws, pattern formation in biological systems, artificial intelligence, as well as logic and foundations of computing.


The event Turing in Context is hosted by Turing’s former college in Cambridge, King’s College and is generously funded by the Isaac Newton Institute and the AISB.



Henk Barendregt (Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, The Netherlands) Sue Black (University College London, U.K.) David Gondek (Thomas J. Watson Research Center, U.S.A.) Leslie Moran (Birkbeck College, U.K.) Julian Richards (Buckingham University, U.K.) Raul Rojas (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany) Angela Stevens (Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany)


All members of Cambridge University, in particular all students at King’s College, are cordially invited to join us for this celebration.

Attendance is free, but since there is only limited seating capacity in Keynes Hall, we ask for advance registration by sending an e-mail to Jenny [email protected]  with the subject line “Registration for Turing in Context, 18-19 Feb 2012”.  Acceptance is on a first-come first-served basis.


The event will take place in Keynes Hall at King’s College. There will be an exhibition of Turing-related items from the archives of King’s College in the adjacent Chatwynd Room during the event.




On Friday, 17 February 2012, Dr. David Gondek from IBM Research will give a general audience presentation on the famous Watson project:


http://www.math.uni-hamburg.de/home/loewe/[email protected]/watson.html



In October 2012, there will be a research-based follow-up event entitled Turing in Context II with talks for specialists at the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium in Brussels:





Sponsors. [email protected] is organized as part of the Alan Turing Year 2012 and sponsored by the King’s College of our Lady and Saint Nicholas in Cambridge, the Isaac Newton Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, and the Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour (AISB).


Organizers. Liesbeth De Mol (Gent), Benedikt Löwe (Amsterdam&  Hamburg), Ken Moody (Cambridge), Giuseppe Primiero (Gent).