Renowned mathematician Dr Alan Turing, the man behind the hypothetical Turing Machine and referred to as the ‘father of computing’, was granted a posthumous pardon under the Royal Prerogative of Mercy by the Queen of England, on Christmas eve. Dr. Turing was also pivotal in breaking the ‘Enigma’ code, arguably shortening the Second World War by at least two years.
David Cameron (Prime Minister, UK): Alan Turing was a remarkable man who played a key role in saving this country in World War 2 by cracking the German enigma code. His action saved countless lives. He also left a remarkable national legacy through his substantial scientific achievements, often being referred to as the ‘father of modern computing’.
Dr Turing was convicted in 1952 for homosexual activity which was illegal at the time and resulted in a sentence of ‘chemical castration’. His conviction led to the removal of his security clearance and stopped him from working for the government.
Dr. Turing killed himself by eating a cyanide-laced apple in June 1954. There had been a long campaign to clear his name, including a well-supported e-petition and Private Member’s Bill along with support from leading scientists such as Sir Stephen Hawking.
[Image courtesy: Ministry of Justice, UK]