Free talk for teachers this Wed 4.30pm with Prof Paul Curzon on the Chocolate Turing Machine ^JB

Prof Paul Curzon’s will be running online (see Using Zoom below) versions of his popular workshops for teachers through Teaching London Computing with support from the National Centre for Computing, BCS, Institute of Coding and Queen Mary of London.

Chocolate Turing Machine talk Eventbrite link

The first of his free lockdown lectures will be on Wednesday 13th May at 4.30pm – all are welcome (the talk is aimed at teachers) and the maximum capacity is 100.

The Chocolate Turing Machine
Wednesday 13th May
4.30 – 5.30pm
Online (Zoom link to be shared)

Please register for your free ticket and I (Jo) will email all registrants before the talk with a link to the Zoom channel we’ll be using.

Turing Machines were invented by Alan Turing before the first computers were created as a model of computation. It strips the idea of what computation is down to a very simple idea of a machine.

Learn how to make a working Turing Machine out of chocolate (symbols after all can be anything). There is no reason why a computer shouldn’t taste nice too.

Further information about the talk and accompanying resources here

Note that we will record Paul’s talk for sharing later so please join with

  • video / camera OFF (or just stick a plaster over the camera!)
  • microphone audio MUTED
  • amended screen name if you don’t want your current screen name to appear

When we take questions you can either unmute your audio, or use the chat function or contact Jo ( to have your question asked for you. I’ll be keeping an eye on the chat window too.

Using Zoom

We’ve not used this before in this setting so please forgive any teething troubles.

You do not need to download anything to use Zoom and can dismiss (or move out of the way) any pop up windows asking you if you want to download software, and simply join online. Zoom works on phones, tablets and computers / laptops but if using a phone you may want to put a thumb or plaster over the camera as it seems to default to ON.

You can test settings (eg microphone) and familiarise yourself with the layout by joining a test room (you’ll be the only participant) here – the examples below are screenshots from a Macbook laptop.

Zoom Join Meeting test.png

Clicking Join will display a page and there may be a pop-up inviting you to download software – close the pop-up.

Zoom initial visit.png

The correct link to click is “join from your browser” which is the last line in the text above (hidden by the ‘Launch Application’ on a Mac computer, may look different on a Windows computer or phone / tablet etc).

Zoom link unhidden and highlighted.png

If it tells you that your browser doesn’t support audio you can ignore it and just use the chat window or email Jo if you want to communicate, or you can update your browser.

Useful icons to be aware of…

Zoom icons for chat and mute audio.png

The two on the left are the audio icons on the app and browser respectively. You can toggle Mute / Unmute when you want to talk. These icons control your inbuilt microphone and if you leave it unmuted or ON then your voice (and any other background noises) are audible.

On the right the Chat icon will open up a little side bar and you can see everyone else’s text-based contributions. Type something and press enter to send to the room, or email me if you have a question (I can ask on your behalf and won’t say who the question has come from).

Our other online talks

Online live lectures