Peter Hilton

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Peter John Hilton (7 April 1923Peter Hilton, "On all Sorts of Automorphisms", The American Mathematical Monthly, 92(9), November 1985, p. 650) was a British mathematician, noted for his contributions to homotopy theory and for code-breaking during the Second World War.

Life

Hilton was born in London, and educated at St Paul's School. He won a scholarship to The Queen's College, Oxford in 1940.

During World War II, as an undergraduate, Hilton was obliged to enrol in training with the Royal Artillery, and was scheduled for conscription in Summer 1942.Peter Hilton, "Living with Fish: Breaking Tunny in the Newmanry and the Testery", p. 190 from pp. 189-203 in Jack Copeland ed, Colossus: The Secrets of Bletchley Park's Codebreaking Computers, Oxford University Press, 2006. Instead, he was interviewed by a team touring universities looking for mathematicians with knowledge of German, and was offered a position in the Foreign Office without being told the nature of the work. The team was, in fact, recruiting on behalf of the Government Code and Cypher School. He accepted, and, aged 18, arrived at wartime codebreaking...
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