Listen: How Alan Turing inspired computer music

The Enigma-breaking genius wrote Programmers’ Handbook for Manchester Electronic Computer Mark II at the University of Manchester in 1951.

Christopher Strachey, a schoolteacher, asked Turing if he could borrow the computer for a night in order to write a programme that would produce music. Next morning, Strachey played back God Save the King, and more.

Two New Zealand researchers, Professor Jack Copeland and composer Jason Long, have now managed to restore those Eureka moments. The tapes were released today.

Listen to history being made here (it’s worth hearing just for the cut-glass accent reactions).


And bless the memory of Alan Turing.

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