Turing's Cathedral - George Dyson

Turing's Cathedral

By George Dyson

  • Release Date: 2012-03-06
  • Genre: Biographies & Memoirs
Turing's Cathedral book review score

4 Score: 4 (From 44 Ratings)

Turing's Cathedral George Dyson Book Review Score: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars

“It is possible to invent a single machine which can be used to compute any computable sequence,” twenty-four-year-old Alan Turing announced in 1936. In Turing’s Cathedral, George Dyson focuses on a small group of men and women, led by John von Neumann at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, who built one of the first computers to realize Alan Turing’s vision of a Universal Machine. Their work would break the distinction between numbers that mean things and numbers that do things—and our universe would never be the same.
 
Using five kilobytes of memory (the amount allocated to displaying the cursor on a computer desktop of today), they achieved unprecedented success in both weather prediction and nuclear weapons design, while tackling, in their spare time, problems ranging from the evolution of viruses to the evolution of stars.
 
Dyson’s account, both historic and prophetic, sheds important new light on how the digital universe exploded in the aftermath of World War II. The proliferation of both codes and machines was paralleled by two historic developments: the decoding of self-replicating sequences in biology and the invention of the hydrogen bomb. It’s no coincidence that the most destructive and the most constructive of human inventions appeared at exactly the same time.
 
How did code take over the world? In retracing how Alan Turing’s one-dimensional model became John von Neumann’s two-dimensional implementation, Turing’s Cathedral offers a series of provocative suggestions as to where the digital universe, now fully three-dimensional, may be heading next.

Turing's Cathedral book review; book recommendations; Biographies & Memoirs books;.

@2019 – Just Read Book. All Right Reserved. justreadbook.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for website owners, to earn advertising fees by linking and advertising to amazon.com and any other website that may be affiliated with Amazon Service LLC Associates Program; As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

User reviews about this book

  • Turing's chathedral

    2
    By mishort
    I just finished chapter 2. It was appalling! It diverged for no apparent reason into a drab history lesson, apparently unrelated to the book's topic as far as the reader can tell. We have been led down the path of understanding Turing and Von Neumann and all of a sudden we are in some side track boring dissertation only interesting to the author. If the rest of the book is some how related to this history then give us a clue for heaven sake!

Comments/Review section is closed