Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 18th Jun 2012 19:56 UTC
In the News Alan Turing, 1936: "It is possible to invent a single machine which can be used to compute any computable sequence." Ars Technica celebrates one of the greatest computer scientists of all time, who would've turned 100 years old this week.
Thread beginning with comment 522820
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Comment by rexstuff
by rexstuff on Tue 19th Jun 2012 05:50 UTC
rexstuff
Member since:
2007-04-06

This sentence made me do a double-take:

"That single espionage victory gave the United States control of the Atlantic shipping lanes..."

Really? The US gained control of the Atlantic shipping lanes? I guess that's not really inaccurate, just a bit of a... limited... way of seeing things.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by rexstuff
by unclefester on Tue 19th Jun 2012 06:53 in reply to "Comment by rexstuff"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

The US Navy also captured an Enigma machine from a German U-Boat... according to Hollywood.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by rexstuff
by zima on Tue 19th Jun 2012 15:47 in reply to "RE: Comment by rexstuff"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

And of course barely any mention of Polish mathematicians. Nothing really about how they were routinely decrypting Enigma transmissions for better part of a decade.

"The first big breakthrough came when" the Poles shared their experience and equipment (and, well, the mathematicians) with Western Allies at the outbreak of WW2 ...or maybe when the spy Hans-Thilo Schmidt sold Enigma information to the French in the early 30s, which subsequently found their way to British and Polish cryptologists (but only the latter seemed to succeed with cracking it, at that point)

Would Turing and his team be able to brake Enigma by themselves without those earlier efforts? Most likely. But it could have took them a bit too long time, as far N Atlantic battlefield was concerned...

There's "the Nazis had no idea the British were decoding their messages" in the yt video in the article ...seems that poptech authors and audiences don't have that much better idea about who was decoding what ;p
Oh well, I guess the long post-WW2 period of secrecy (easier to sell "unbreakable" surplus Enigmas to new, small states), plus "staged" and inconsistent across countries declassification (or even... because the original Enigma-breaking place was now almost-adversaries?), favoured promulgation of myths.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Comment by rexstuff
by M.Onty on Tue 19th Jun 2012 10:55 in reply to "Comment by rexstuff"
M.Onty Member since:
2009-10-23

I guess that's not really inaccurate, just a bit of a... limited... way of seeing things.


Right, especially as the Royal Navy was the bigger of the two fleets at the time, and both took and inflicted the brunt of the casualties from and on the U-Boats.

Reply Parent Score: 2