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Turing Award facts for kids

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ACM Turing Award
Stephen Kettle's slate statue of Alan Turing at Bletchley Park
Presented by Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Country United States
Reward US $1,000,000
First awarded 1966; 57 years ago (1966)
Last awarded 2021

The ACM A. M. Turing Award is an annual prize given by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) for contributions of lasting and major technical importance to computer science. It is generally recognized as the highest distinction in computer science and is colloquially known as or often referred to as the "Nobel Prize of Computing".

The award is named after Alan Turing, who was a British mathematician and reader in mathematics at the University of Manchester. Turing is often credited as being the key founder of theoretical computer science and artificial intelligence. From 2007 to 2013, the award was accompanied by an additional prize of US$250,000, with financial support provided by Intel and Google. Since 2014, the award has been accompanied by a prize of US$1 million, with financial support provided by Google.

The first recipient, in 1966, was Alan Perlis, of Carnegie Mellon University. The first female recipient was Frances E. Allen of IBM in 2006. The latest recipient, in 2022, is Robert Metcalfe.


Year Recipient(s) Photo Rationale Affiliated institute(s)
1966 Alan Perlis For his influence in the area of advanced computer programming techniques and compiler construction. Carnegie Mellon University
1967 Maurice Wilkes Maurice Vincent Wilkes 1980 (3, cropped).jpg Wilkes is best known as the builder and designer of the EDSAC, the first computer with an internally stored program. Built in 1949, the EDSAC used a mercury delay line memory. He is also known as the author, with Wheeler and Gill, of a volume on "Preparation of Programs for Electronic Digital Computers" in 1951, in which program libraries were effectively introduced. University of Cambridge
1968 Richard Hamming For his work on numerical methods, automatic coding systems, and error-detecting and error-correcting codes. Bell Labs
1969 Marvin Minsky Marvin Minsky at OLPCc.jpg For his central role in creating, shaping, promoting, and advancing the field of artificial intelligence. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1970 James H. Wilkinson For his research in numerical analysis to facilitate the use of the high-speed digital computer, having received special recognition for his work in computations in linear algebra and "backward" error analysis. National Physical Laboratory
1971 John McCarthy John McCarthy Stanford.jpg McCarthy's lecture "The Present State of Research on Artificial Intelligence" is a topic that covers the area in which he has achieved considerable recognition for his work. Stanford University
1972 Edsger W. Dijkstra Edsger Wybe Dijkstra.jpg Edsger Dijkstra was a principal contributor in the late 1950s to the development of the ALGOL, a high level programming language which has become a model of clarity and mathematical rigor. He is one of the principal proponents of the science and art of programming languages in general, and has greatly contributed to our understanding of their structure, representation, and implementation. His fifteen years of publications extend from theoretical articles on graph theory to basic manuals, expository texts, and philosophical contemplations in the field of programming languages. Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica,
Eindhoven University of Technology
1973 Charles Bachman Charles Bachman 2012.jpg For his outstanding contributions to database technology. General Electric Research Laboratory (now under Groupe Bull, an Atos company)
1974 Donald Knuth KnuthAtOpenContentAlliance.jpg For his major contributions to the analysis of algorithms and the design of programming languages, and in particular for his contributions to "The Art of Computer Programming" through his well-known books in a continuous series by this title. California Institute of Technology,
Center for Communications Research, Center for Communications and Computing, Institute for Defense Analyses,
Stanford University
1975 Allen Newell In joint scientific efforts extending over twenty years, initially in collaboration with J. C. Shaw at the RAND Corporation, and subsequently with numerous faculty and student colleagues at Carnegie Mellon University, they have made basic contributions to artificial intelligence, the psychology of human cognition, and list processing. RAND Corporation,
Carnegie Mellon University
Herbert A. Simon Herbert simon red cropped.jpg
1976 Michael O. Rabin M O Rabin.jpg For their joint paper "Finite Automata and Their Decision Problem", which introduced the idea of nondeterministic machines, which has proved to be an enormously valuable concept. Their (Scott & Rabin) classic paper has been a continuous source of inspiration for subsequent work in this field. Princeton University
Dana Scott Scott Dana small.jpg University of Chicago
1977 John Backus John Backus 2.jpg For profound, influential, and lasting contributions to the design of practical high-level programming systems, notably through his work on FORTRAN, and for seminal publication of formal procedures for the specification of programming languages. IBM
1978 Robert W. Floyd For having a clear influence on methodologies for the creation of efficient and reliable software, and for helping to found the following important subfields of computer science: the theory of parsing, the semantics of programming languages, automatic program verification, automatic program synthesis, and analysis of algorithms. Carnegie Mellon University,
Stanford University
1979 Kenneth E. Iverson Kei younger.jpg For his pioneering effort in programming languages and mathematical notation resulting in what the computing field now knows as APL, for his contributions to the implementation of interactive systems, to educational uses of APL, and to programming language theory and practice. IBM
1980 Tony Hoare Sir Tony Hoare IMG 5125.jpg For his fundamental contributions to the definition and design of programming languages. Queen's University Belfast,
University of Oxford
1981 Edgar F. Codd For his fundamental and continuing contributions to the theory and practice of database management systems, esp. relational databases. IBM
1982 Stephen Cook Prof.Cook (cropped).jpg For his advancement of our understanding of the complexity of computation in a significant and profound way. University of Toronto
1983 Ken Thompson Ken Thompson 02.jpg For their development of generic operating systems theory and specifically for the implementation of the UNIX operating system. Bell Labs
Dennis Ritchie Dennis Ritchie 2011.jpg
1984 Niklaus Wirth Niklaus Wirth, UrGU (cropped).jpg For developing a sequence of innovative computer languages, EULER, ALGOL-W, Pascal, MODULA and Oberon. Stanford University,
University of Zurich,
ETH Zurich
1985 Richard M. Karp Karp mg 7725-b.cr2.jpg For his continuing contributions to the theory of algorithms including the development of efficient algorithms for network flow and other combinatorial optimization problems, the identification of polynomial-time computability with the intuitive notion of algorithmic efficiency, and, most notably, contributions to the theory of NP-completeness. University of California, Berkeley
1986 John Hopcroft Hopcrofg (cropped).jpg For fundamental achievements in the design and analysis of algorithms and data structures. Cornell University
Robert Tarjan Bob Tarjan.jpg Stanford University,
Cornell University,
University of California, Berkeley,
Princeton University
1987 John Cocke For significant contributions in the design and theory of compilers, the architecture of large systems and the development of reduced instruction set computers (RISC). IBM
1988 Ivan Sutherland Ivan Sutherland at CHM.jpg For his pioneering and visionary contributions to computer graphics, starting with Sketchpad, and continuing after. Stanford University,
Harvard University,
University of Utah,
California Institute of Technology
1989 William Kahan William Kahan 2008 (cropped).jpg For his fundamental contributions to numerical analysis. One of the foremost experts on floating-point computations. Kahan has dedicated himself to "making the world safe for numerical computations." University of California, Berkeley
1990 Fernando J. Corbató Fernando Corbato.jpg For his pioneering work organizing the concepts and leading the development of the general-purpose, large-scale, time-sharing and resource-sharing computer systems, CTSS and Multics. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1991 Robin Milner For three distinct and complete achievements: 1) LCF, the mechanization of Scott's Logic of Computable Functions, probably the first theoretically based yet practical tool for machine assisted proof construction; 2) ML, the first language to include polymorphic type inference together with a type-safe exception-handling mechanism; 3) CCS, a general theory of concurrency. In addition, he formulated and strongly advanced full abstraction, the study of the relationship between operational and denotational semantics. Stanford University,
University of Edinburgh
1992 Butler Lampson Professional Developers Conference 2009 Technical Leaders Panel 6 (cropped).jpg For contributions to the development of distributed, personal computing environments and the technology for their implementation: workstations, networks, operating systems, programming systems, displays, security and document publishing. PARC,
1993 Juris Hartmanis Juris Hartmanis(2002).jpg In recognition of their seminal paper which established the foundations for the field of computational complexity theory. General Electric Research Laboratory (now under Groupe Bull, an Atos company)
Richard E. Stearns Dick Stearns (cropped).jpg
1994 Edward Feigenbaum 27. Dr. Edward A. Feigenbaum 1994-1997.jpg For pioneering the design and construction of large scale artificial intelligence systems, demonstrating the practical importance and potential commercial impact of artificial intelligence technology. Stanford University
Raj Reddy ProfReddys Photo Cropped.jpg Stanford University,
Carnegie Mellon University
1995 Manuel Blum Blum manuel (cropped).jpg In recognition of his contributions to the foundations of computational complexity theory and its application to cryptography and program checking. University of California, Berkeley
1996 Amir Pnueli Amir Pnueli.jpg For seminal work introducing temporal logic into computing science and for outstanding contributions to program and systems verification. Stanford University,
Tel Aviv University,
Weizmann Institute of Science,
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
1997 Douglas Engelbart Douglas Engelbart in 2008.jpg For an inspiring vision of the future of interactive computing and the invention of key technologies to help realize this vision. SRI International,
McDonnell Douglas,
Bootstrap Institute/Alliance,
The Doug Engelbart Institute
1998 Jim Gray Jim Gray Computing in the 21st Century 2006 (cropped).jpg For seminal contributions to database and transaction processing research and technical leadership in system implementation. IBM,
1999 Fred Brooks Fred Brooks (cropped).jpg For landmark contributions to computer architecture, operating systems, and software engineering. IBM,
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
2000 Andrew Yao Andrew Yao MFO (cropped).jpg In recognition of his fundamental contributions to the theory of computation, including the complexity-based theory of pseudorandom number generation, cryptography, and communication complexity. Stanford University,
University of California, Berkeley,
Princeton University
2001 Ole-Johan Dahl For ideas fundamental to the emergence of object-oriented programming, through their design of the programming languages Simula I and Simula 67. Norwegian Computing Center,
University of Oslo
Kristen Nygaard Kristen-Nygaard-SBLP-1997-head.png
2002 Ron Rivest Ronald L Rivest photo.jpg For their ingenious contribution for making public-key cryptography useful in practice. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Adi Shamir Adi Shamir at TU Darmstadt (2013).jpg
Leonard Adleman Len-mankin-pic.jpg University of Southern California
2003 Alan Kay Alan Kay (3097597186) (cropped).jpg For pioneering many of the ideas at the root of contemporary object-oriented programming languages, leading the team that developed Smalltalk, and for fundamental contributions to personal computing. University of Utah,
Stanford University,
Apple ATG,
Walt Disney Imagineering,
Viewpoints Research Institute,
HP Labs
2004 Vint Cerf Dr Vint Cerf ForMemRS (cropped).jpg For pioneering work on internetworking, including the design and implementation of the Internet's basic communications protocols, TCP/IP, and for inspired leadership in networking. University of California, Los Angeles,
Stanford University, DARPA,
MCI (now under Verizon),
CNRI, Google
Bob Kahn Bob Kahn.jpg MIT,
Bolt Beranek and Newman,
2005 Peter Naur Peternaur.JPG For fundamental contributions to programming language design and the definition of ALGOL 60, to compiler design, and to the art and practice of computer programming. Regnecentralen (now under Fujitsu),
University of Copenhagen
2006 Frances Allen Allen mg 2528-3750K-b.jpg For pioneering contributions to the theory and practice of optimizing compiler techniques that laid the foundation for modern optimizing compilers and automatic parallel execution. IBM
2007 Edmund M. Clarke Edmund Clarke FLoC 2006 (cropped).jpg For their roles in developing model checking into a highly effective verification technology, widely adopted in the hardware and software industries. Harvard University,
Carnegie Mellon University
E. Allen Emerson E-allen-emerson (cropped).jpg Harvard University
Joseph Sifakis Joseph Sifakis img 0966.jpg French National Centre for Scientific Research
2008 Barbara Liskov Barbara Liskov MIT computer scientist 2010.jpg For contributions to practical and theoretical foundations of programming language and system design, especially related to data abstraction, fault tolerance, and distributed computing. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2009 Charles P. Thacker Chuckthacker (cropped).jpg For his pioneering design and realization of the Xerox Alto, the first modern personal computer, and in addition for his contributions to the Ethernet and the Tablet PC. PARC,
Microsoft Research
2010 Leslie Valiant Leslie Valiant (cropped).jpg For transformative contributions to the theory of computation, including the theory of probably approximately correct (PAC) learning, the complexity of enumeration and of algebraic computation, and the theory of parallel and distributed computing. Harvard University
2011 Judea Pearl Judea Pearl at NIPS 2013 (11781981594) (cropped).jpg For fundamental contributions to artificial intelligence through the development of a calculus for probabilistic and causal reasoning. University of California, Los Angeles
New Jersey Institute of Technology
2012 Silvio Micali Silvio Micali (cropped).jpg For transformative work that laid the complexity-theoretic foundations for the science of cryptography and in the process pioneered new methods for efficient verification of mathematical proofs in complexity theory. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Shafi Goldwasser Shafi Goldwasser.JPG Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
Weizmann Institute of Science
2013 Leslie Lamport Leslie Lamport.jpg For fundamental contributions to the theory and practice of distributed and concurrent systems, notably the invention of concepts such as causality and logical clocks, safety and liveness, replicated state machines, and sequential consistency. Massachusetts Computer Associates (now under Essig PLM),
SRI International,
Compaq (now under HP),
Microsoft Research
2014 Michael Stonebraker Michael Stonebraker P1120062.jpg For fundamental contributions to the concepts and practices underlying modern database systems. University of California, Berkeley,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2015 Whitfield Diffie Whitfield Diffie Royal Society (cropped).jpg For fundamental contributions to modern cryptography. Diffie and Hellman's groundbreaking 1976 paper, "New Directions in Cryptography", introduced the ideas of public-key cryptography and digital signatures, which are the foundation for most regularly-used security protocols on the Internet today. Stanford University
Martin Hellman Martin-Hellman.jpg
2016 Tim Berners-Lee Sir Tim Berners-Lee (cropped).jpg For inventing the World Wide Web, the first web browser, and the fundamental protocols and algorithms allowing the Web to scale. CERN,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
World Wide Web Consortium
2017 John L. Hennessy John L Hennessy (cropped).jpg For pioneering a systematic, quantitative approach to the design and evaluation of computer architectures with enduring impact on the microprocessor industry. Stanford University
David Patterson David A Patterson.jpg University of California, Berkeley
2018 Yoshua Bengio Yoshua Bengio - 2017.jpg For conceptual and engineering breakthroughs that have made deep neural networks a critical component of computing. Université de Montréal, McGill University,
Geoffrey Hinton Geoffrey Hinton at UBC (cropped).jpg University of Toronto,
University of California, San Diego,
Carnegie Mellon University,
University College London,
University of Edinburgh,
Google AI
Yann LeCun Yann LeCun - 2018 (cropped).jpg University of Toronto,
Bell Labs,
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, New York University,
Meta AI
2019 Edwin Catmull VES Awards 89 cropped.jpg For fundamental contributions to 3-D computer graphics, and the revolutionary impact of these techniques on computer-generated imagery (CGI) in filmmaking and other applications. University of Utah,
Walt Disney Animation Studios
Pat Hanrahan Pat Hanrahan Tableau Customer Conference 2009.jpg Pixar,
Princeton University,
Stanford University
2020 Alfred Aho For fundamental algorithms and theory underlying programming language implementation and for synthesizing these results and those of others in their highly influential books, which educated generations of computer scientists. Bell Labs,
Columbia University
Jeffrey Ullman Bell Labs,
Princeton University,
Stanford University
2021 Jack Dongarra Jack-dongarra-2022.jpg For pioneering contributions to numerical algorithms and libraries that enabled high performance computational software to keep pace with exponential hardware improvements for over four decades. Argonne National Laboratory,
Oak Ridge National Laboratory,
University of Manchester,
Texas A&M University Institute for Advanced Study,
University of Tennessee,
Rice University
2022 Robert Metcalfe With Bob Metcalfe (cropped).jpg For the invention, standardization, and commercialization of Ethernet. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University, Xerox PARC, University of Texas at Austin

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Premio Turing para niños

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Renowned Hispanic scientists
Luis Walter Alvarez
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Sabrina Gonzalez Pasterski
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