Nature magazine on Britain's neglect of Alan Turing

"An opportunity to bring an intellectual giant — and science itself — to the attention of the international public will be missed."

An editorial in this week's Nature magazine, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Alan Turing, points out that London – the city of his birth – has planned no official commemoration. This neglect is in fact doubly ironic considering that only an ill-timed injury prevented Turing (a talented runner) from joining the British Olympic team in 1948, held, like this year, in London itself. The magazine features a number of pieces about Turing, highlighting the extraordinary legacy of this mathematician, cryptanalyst and computer scientist, to name just a few of his hats. Britain's neglect, the editorial claims, can be contrasted with a number of events being staged largely by volunteers around the world, and with Germany's enthusiastic celebration of Einstein's centennial in 2005.