Ralph C. Merkle is a computer scientist. He is one of the inventors of public key cryptography. He is a researcher and speaker on cryonics.
Researchers in molecular nanotechnology are more aware than most of the truly remarkable medical advances we can expect in the next few decades. The ability to arrange and rearrange atoms and molecules in most of the ways permitted by natural law will enable revolutionary capabilities, including the full power of a mature nanomedicine, which should make good health the birthright of all humanity. Disease, disability, and the infirmities of old age will become rarities; joining polio, the plague and smallpox as ancient pestilences finally laid to rest by the inexorable advance of technology. While some of us might have the good fortune to stay alive and healthy until these medical marvels are available, cryonics offers a bridge to the future in case we wouldn't otherwise make it. Should our health fail we can be cryopreserved and cooled to the temperature of liquid nitrogen. At that temperature, tissue remains essentially unchanged for centuries. We can preserve ourselves for the few remaining decades until the day when nanomedicine can heal our injuries and restore our health: as good or better than the health we enjoyed in our 20's or 30's.
Nanotechnology & Cryonics – Preserving Ourselves for the Future, August 2017
- Ralph Merkle's Home Page
- Ralph Merkle proposes a self-improving DAO democracy
- Ralph Merkle on Wikipedia