Sun, 16 May 2021

LONDON, England: The Bank of England has released the design of a new banknote honoring World War II mathematician Alan Turing, who, as a code-breaker, helped Britain read top secret German codes throughout the war.

The 50-pound ($69) note is to have a drawing of Turing, along with the formula from one of his papers, as well as an image of the machines used to decipher the German Enigma code.

The note, to be printed on polymer, will include a quote by Turing about machine intelligence: "This is only a foretaste of what is to come, and only the shadow of what is going to be."

Turing's decryption of German naval communications was critical in allowing British and American convoys to avoid German submarines during the Battle of the Atlantic.

Turing's work also laid the groundwork for the creation of the modern computer.

In 1952, Turing was convicted of gross indecency for having sex with a man. The conviction resulted in his losing his security clearance to work with Britain's GCHQ spy agency.

In 1954 Turing committed suicide at age 41.

He was granted a royal pardon by Queen Elizabeth in 2013 to set aside the criminal conviction.

Britian's 50-pound note is the highest-value banknote distributed by the Bank of England. It will enter circulation on June 23, Turing's birthday.

A Hollywood movie about Turing was released in 2014, entitled The Imitation Game.

More Beijing News

Access More

Sign up for Beijing News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!