Dr. Ralph Merkle received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1979 where he co-invented public key cryptography. He joined Xerox PARC in 1988, where he pursued research in computational nanotechnology until 1999. He was then a Principal Fellow at Zyvex, where he continued to pursue research in nanotechnology. Appearing in hours 2-4, Merkle says we will have tiny machines that can be injected into the body and "zap the bad things." They are molecular machines – made out of atoms. Merkle describes just how small an atom is and his Scanning Tunneling Microscope, which lets you actually touch, see, and move individual atoms.
We’ll be able to pack more computer power in the volume of a sugar cube then exists in the world today, he predicted. Art has heard that it will take a molecular computer to create time travel. Merkle says these machines might have applications to help with heart attacks by making an artificial red blood cell that can carry more oxygen to the tissues. Dr. Merkle revealed that he is signed up to have his head cryogenically frozen for science. The idea is that he would wake up with a new body. If they figure out how to bring back the brain, more than likely they will have figured out how to make bodies via DNA or cloning techniques, he surmised.
During the first hour, Art talks about current events, including the anthrax scare. He also features Open Lines, with one caller expounding on the Dead Sea Scrolls. Notorious caller JC Webster also checks in.