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Alan Turing was an English mathematician and pioneer in the fields of cryptology and computer science. His most famous contribution to the field of computing was the Universal Turing Machine. This was a conceptual computer, which could calculate any algorithm using an infinite tape and a mechanical unit capable of reading, erasing and writing results upon the tape.
Turing also came up with the Turing Test, which attempted to determine when a machine could be called intelligent. He reasoned that a computer could be considered intelligent if a human interrogator was unable to tell it apart from a human, given its responses during conversation. This continues to be one of the holy grails of artificial intelligence. However, there is still academic debate over the significance of the test.
Turing made many other contributions to computing, logic and cryptology, and would have made many more. However, he committed suicide in 1954.