Alan Turing and His Contemporaries

Simon Lavington (ed)

Published by

BCS

ISBN

9781906124908

RRP

£14.99

Reviewed by

Peter Daly CEng CITP

Score

9 out of 10

Alan Turing and his ContemporariesThis year marks the centenary of Alan Turing’s birth and this book is about his (and others) work covering the post-war period (1945-1955). It’s an interesting read and covers the major British computer developments from Turing and his contemporaries during this period.

It’s written in a straightforward way and the technical detail is sufficient to enable one to grasp the basics without overshadowing the book with too much information. There’s an interesting appendix with a table of the major machines during this period and how they would compare against one another.

One of the best parts of the book is the emphasis on ‘contemporaries’ - this is not just a book about Alan Turing but others who were working in the field at the same time and their contributions to the embryonic computer industry of the day. A good overview of the development of the British computer industry.

It’s a short book (100 pages) and this is an advantage because it covers the essential details of the times but does not have the space to dig deeper - it leaves further detail to a reading list at the end of the book.

Further information: BCS

March 2012