Friday, January 28, 2011

The Genius of Turing

For some time I've been involved (albeit only slightly) in a new documentary about Alan Turing. Happily, I can now talk about it. Here's the official blurb:
Alan Turing was the British WW II code breaker and father of computer science who faced persecution for being gay. In his short life, Turing profoundly changed our world. Historians believe that his WW2 code breaking work helped save millions of lives and shortened the war by two years. He also founded three new scientific fields: computer science, artificial intelligence, and morphogenesis.

In 1952, he was arrested by British police for having a relationship with another man and eventually was forced to undergo chemical castration to "fix" his sexual orientation. Two years after his arrest, Turing killed himself at age 41. Turing is one of the most important scientists ever, yet his tragic story and lasting legacy remain largely unknown. This film will change that fact.

Almost 100 years after his birth, an international production team is set to take viewers on a journey to rediscover Alan Turing. Research and development for this feature-length drama documentary is underway, with plans to reach millions of viewers around the world through broadcast and theatrical release. The international production team includes Turing's preeminent biographer Dr. Andrew Hodges. Funding is currently being lined up for the film, with a goal for completion in mid-2012, to coincide with the centenary of Turing's birth. It's an important story that needs to be told.
And here's a little trailer:

More details of the film are here. The producers are busy fund-raising and working on the film with the aim of getting it finished for Turing's centenary in 2012.


Cássio said...

Have they tried fund raising with developers and tech companies? Given the exceptional responses in campaigns such as Ruby Summer of Code, for example, i'm sure it's a great way to fund raising.

Silmeth said...

Heh, again claiming that Turing himself as the first man broke Enigma? Nobody remembers Polish mathematicians, who were first (and who gave to UK their ideas and "bombs" to do it)?

gribbly said...

Hi there,

The documentary looks great, so glad it's getting made.

I would like to offer this song I wrote years ago about Alan Turing:

Well, it's partly about him anyway. The verse specifically mentioning "Alan" starts at around 1:28.

Hope you like it, and good luck with the documentary. I will see it and support it for sure.

John Graham-Cumming said...

I'm certainly not denying the Polish precursor to Bletchley Park. And I'm not involved in the script for the film. But I will remind the producer.

And for the record, and the last time because I'm getting tired of this, clearly the Poles made the major first strides in breaking Enigma.

Rajeev said...

The preview looks good, and keeping the protagonist's identity a mystery (for non-CS people) until the very end is a nice touch.