In 1960, a physicist shined a flash bulb into a ruby crystal tube and the first laser was born. Ira Flatow and guests discuss the history of the laser, the intrigue surrounding its invention and why you can't pick up the phone or get in a car without having a laser to thank.
Thomas Baer, executive director, Stanford Photonics Research Center, Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.
James Gordon, physicist, retired from Bell Labs, Rumson, N.J.
Nick Taylor, author, Laser: The Inventor, the Nobel Laureate, and the Thirty-Year Patent War (Simon & Schuster, 2000), New York, N.Y.