Alan Turing became friends with Christopher Morcom in1928. Morcom was, in many ways, Turing’s first real peer. He was, like Turing, a mathematician and a scientist. “When they were together,” David Leavitt writes, “the boys were more likely to talk about relativity and the value of π – which Turing, in his spare time, had calculated to thirty-six decimal points – than about poetry. Despite their seemingly dry subject matter, these conversations hummed, at least for Turing, with poetic intensity.” It was an unrequited love, by all accounts, but it was no less significant for that.
Christopher Morcom changed Alan Turing. The distracted and somewhat lonely boy was no longer alone; now he had someone to look up to, and someone he wanted to impress. As a scientist, Morcom was careful. Turing, who was raw enthusiasm, unbound, was careless. Morcom taught him to be methodical, which is something his schooling had failed to do. There was a focus and a drive that had not been there before, and his schoolmasters, who had previously been dismayed at his work, were astonished by the change. As Turing later wrote, Morcom “had a great power in practical work of finding out just what was the best way of doing anything.”
In the early hours of February 7, 1930, Turing had a premonition of Morcom’s death. The abbey clock struck a quarter to three, and he looked out of the window and saw the setting moon, which he suddenly knew was a “goodbye to Morcom”. That same night Christopher Morcom was taken ill with tuberculosis, and on February 13 he died.
new laws imposed restrictions on the rights of Aboriginal Australia people to own property and seek employment, and allowed all states to remove children from their mothers if the father was suspected to be white. The kids were grown up in foster homes and are today called the Aboriginal stolen generation.
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Mr. Gifford, as students call him, spent about a dozen years at Apple during two tours, most recently as director of software development for professional applications. He was in charge of the Macintosh operating system two decades ago in his first stint with the company, so maintaining a roomful of iMacs at this K-5 school in San Mateo is hardly a challenge.
Calenda would run the lab for free, but being an employee gives him the authority he needs to do it properly. He regards his new role
as a way to give back to the community while pursuing a newfound passion for improving schools through technology.
“As class sizes go up and funding goes down, we have to figure out creative ways to enhance education,” said Calenda, whose 8-year-old son, Lucas, is a second-grader at the Mandarin-immersion school. “Computer-assisted learning is a good way to do that.”