Codebreaker Alan Turing To Be On Britain's 50 Pound Note



He also devised the Turing test - a thought experiment that attempts to define a standard for a machine to be called "intelligent".

Turing's electro-mechanical machine, a forerunner of modern computers, broke the Enigma code used by Nazi Germany and helped give the Allies an advantage in the naval struggle for control of the Atlantic. Instead of being rewarded for his wartime heroics, he was convicted of gross indecency in 1952 and sentenced to chemical castration using Diethylstilbestrol (DES), in a awful process with a variety of side-effects.

Turing received a posthumous pardon from Queen Elizabeth II in 2013.

Last year, the Banknote Character Advisory Committee chose to use the new £50 note to celebrate the world of science.

The new note, which will enter circulation in 2021 and feature technical drawings and a quote from Turing, is the last denomination of the pound to be switched from paper to a more secure polymer.

President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell said: "We're thrilled and immensely proud at the news Alan Turing will feature on the £50 note as he is such a strong part of our institution's rich heritage". The £50 is by far the least used among the general public, and seen as a note favored by criminals who want to move large amounts of cash. After the war, Turing worked on designs for pioneering early computers including the Automatic Computing Engine (ACE), one of the first electronic stored-programme computers which was built in 1950 at the National Physical Laboratory in London.

Mathematician Alan Turing, who helped Britain win World War Two with his code-cracking but committed suicide after being convicted for homosexuality, will appear on the Bank of England's next 50-pound banknote, the BoE said on Monday.

After the war he was prosecuted for homosexuality, which was then illegal, and forcibly treated with female hormones.

Turing beat others on the Bank of England's shortlist including Margaret Thatcher, Stephen Hawking and Ada Lovelace. His life story was adapted for the big screen in 2014 in the film The Imitation Game, and today his name lives on as a benchmark in AI testing.

Former lawmaker John Leech, who headed up the campaign for Turing's pardon, said he was "absolutely delighted" by the news that the scientist would be so honored.

"I hope it will go some way to acknowledging his unprecedented contribution to society and science", he told the Associated Press.