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30 October 2012

Mathematics, breaking Tunny, and the first computer

Location: Meeting Room 1, Jennie Lee Building
Time: 14.30pm - 15:30pm
Speaker(s): Malcolm MacCallum, (Former Director, Heilbronn Institute, University of Bristol)

Bletchley Park's success with Enigma is well-known. Less well known is the breaking of 'Tunny', the German teleprinter devices used for strategic Army communications. The development of Bletchley's ability to decode Tunny depended on three distinct mathematical advances due to William Tutte. The mechanisation of the second of these was the stimulus to the building of Colossus, the first digital computer, by Thomas Flowers.The talk will explain Tutte's work and the birth of Colossus.

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Contact: mailto:h.c.sharp@open.ac.uk