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I found a puzzle that no-one can solve.

I created a law but I was not a lawyer.

I lived in a hostile world but found refuge in a hut.


Who was I, and can you explain my story?

Clue 1

The word "created" is used loosely. I can be considered to have created the law as a result of the sum of my actions. The actual statute came posthumously.

Clue 2

The 'puzzle' was a puzzle to me and I was able to show that it was insoluble. Later someone described it as a problem instead of a puzzle. That person's terminology has stuck to this day. P.S. No person or intelligent life-form or computer can solve this problem universally.

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  • $\begingroup$ @QuantumTwinkie - rot13(Gur sbyybjvat cvpgher vf abg gur uhg va dhrfgvba ohg, rkpyhqvat gur cbepu, gur fglyr bs pbafgehpgvba vf irel fvzvyne. uggcf://jjj.qbp.tbig.am/tybonynffrgf/vzntrf/cynprf/pnagreohel/neguhef-cnff/pebj-uhg/pebj-uhg-jvqr-1200.wct ) $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 15:32
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    $\begingroup$ Lawyers generally do not create laws $\endgroup$ – BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Jul 8 at 20:59
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    $\begingroup$ @BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft - Fair point. I used that in part to eliminate Pierre Fermat who was a lawyer and yet owes all his fame to his mathematical discoveries. $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 21:06
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You are:

Alan Turing!


I found a puzzle that no-one can solve.

The Halting Problem - where Alan Turing proved that a general algorithm to solve the halting problem for all possible program-input pairs cannot exist.

I created a law but I was not a lawyer.

The Alan Turing Law named after Alan Turing who was not a lawyer. This was named in 2013, posthumously.

I lived in a hostile world but found refuge in a hut.

Alan Turing was convicted of public indecency, after starting a relationship with a man which was illegal at the time. The world was also very hostile as there was WWII. Hut 8 was a section at Bletchley Park, led by Alan Turing during WWII.

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  • $\begingroup$ Well done! You have found me. However before accepting I must insist on the correct answer to your second point. I'll see what I can do in the clues to help. Neither of the things you suggest is insoluble. P.S. You are right about the hostile world. Of course there was a lot of hostility going on at the time in the wider world as well! $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 19:59
  • $\begingroup$ @chaslyfromUK i assume you mean first point? I’ll do a bit more research $\endgroup$ – Beastly Gerbil Jul 8 at 20:08
  • $\begingroup$ @chaslyfromUK would the problem be quite halting for an individual by any chance :P $\endgroup$ – Beastly Gerbil Jul 8 at 20:09
  • $\begingroup$ Bingo! ............ $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 20:16
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Perhaps a long shot:

Sir Isaac Newton

I found a puzzle that no-one can solve.

This problem (about the trajectory of a projectile) worked on by Newton does not seem to have a solution (I am no expert on this subject).

I created a law but I was not a lawyer.

Newton's law of universal gravitation

I lived in a hostile world but found refuge in a hut.

He found refuge in a stone cottage during the plague.

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    $\begingroup$ A good try but a stone-cottage is not a hut! Also note, this is a problem that no-one can solve. I'm not sure that applies to Newton's. Note: "No-one" here is not wordplay. Literally no human being or alien creature can solve this. $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 11:55
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    $\begingroup$ ... or computer. Perhaps an omniscient god could solve it but that's for theologians to debate! $\endgroup$ – chasly - reinstate Monica Jul 8 at 20:12

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