Info:Main Page

New World Encyclopedia integrates facts with values.

Written by online collaboration with certified experts.


Did you know?

In accord with Just War theory, wars between nations should be declared by the legitimate government authority (read more)

Featured Article: Alan Turing

Alan Turing Statue, on display at Bletchley Park
Alan Mathison Turing (June 23, 1912 – June 7, 1954) was an English mathematician, logician, cryptographer and one of the originators of modern computer science. In 1936, Turing developed the concept of “Turing machines,” theoretical devices that could mechanically perform mathematical computations by following a specific table of instructions. Turing machines formalized the concept of the algorithm and helped to determine the limits of computability in mathematical functions (Church–Turing thesis). The concept of a “universal Turing machine” which could incorporate the functions of numerous lesser Turing machines laid the groundwork for computer programming.

During World War II, Turing worked at Bletchley Park, Britain's codebreaking center, and was for a time head of Hut 8, the section responsible for German naval cryptanalysis. He devised a number of techniques for breaking German ciphers, including the “bombe,” an electromechanical machine that could detect the settings for the German “Enigma” code machine.

Popular Article: Academic freedom

Academic freedom is the freedom of teachers, students, and academic institutions to pursue knowledge wherever it may lead, without undue or unreasonable interference. At a minimum, academic freedom involves the freedom to engage in the entire range of activities involved in the production of knowledge, including choosing a research focus, determining what to teach in the classroom, presenting research findings to colleagues, and publishing research findings. Still, academic freedom has limits. Teachers should be careful to avoid controversial matter that is unrelated to the subject. When they speak or write in public, they may be free to express their opinions without fear from institutional censorship or discipline, but they should show restraint and clearly indicate that they are not speaking for their institution. Academic tenure protects academic freedom by ensuring that teachers can be fired only for adequate cause, such as gross professional incompetence or behavior that evokes condemnation from the academic community itself. Academic freedom is thus both a freedom and a responsibility—freedom to pursue knowledge without interference, but the responsibility to maintain both the standards of academia and society's norms.