Benedict reading Turing’s letter.
Alan Turing was a human being of exceptional intelligence — a mathematical genius — and worked as one of the leading code-breakers during World War II. He is also considered to be the “father of modern computing” thanks to his pioneering work in the field of computer science. In 1950, before the term “Artificial Intelligence” had been coined, he posed the question, “Can computers think?" and proposed the Turing Test. His achievements are staggering.
In 1952, he was charged with gross indecency after admitting to a sexual relationship with another man, and as a result was told to choose either imprisonment or chemical castration as punishment. He chose the latter. Alan Turing was found dead on June 8th, 1954, a day after taking his own life. He was aged just 41.
Turing wrote the following letter in 1952 to his friend and fellow mathematician, Norman Routledge, shortly before pleading guilty.
(Source: Alan Turing: The Enigma - The Centenary Edition; Image: Alan Turing, via.)
"…I’m afraid that the following syllogism may be used by some in the future.
“Turing believes machines think
“Turing lies with men
“Therefore machines do not think
“Yours in distress,