New shoes with built-in GPS devices will go on sale this month to help track dementia patients who wander off and get lost. Caretakers can download a smartphone app that allows them to track the person wearing the shoes, which could help patients with Alzheimer’s disease stay in their homes and live autonomously for longer periods.
Nike just announced that it's bringing the famed self-tying, light-up sneakers from Back to the Future II to market as a limited edition, under the name Nike Air Mag. They're not tech-free, boasting some flashy LED lighting, but everyone knows the main draw of the movie's shoes was the self-tying--and these shoes could have been so much more futuristic. It may not be 2015, the year depicted in the movie, just yet, but that doesn't mean we don't deserve self-tying shoes right now, dammit. Here are some possible routes to the true self-tying shoe.
Every month we search far and wide to bring you a dozen of the best new ideas in gear. These gadgets are the first, the best and the latest. Check out the gallery below to get the first look at what consumer technology has brought us this month.
After a few weeks of testing, the NBA has officially banned Athletic Propulsion Labs's Concept 1 sneaker. The Concept 1 uses a spring-loaded system to allegedly improve a player's vertical leap by a few (but significant) inches--a benefit that, true or not, just doesn't fly with the NBA.
Each month we look beyond the shelves of your local big-box store to dig up the best new ideas in gear. This is the stuff that is better, faster, stronger, and does more than pretty much anything we've seen before it. Click the gallery thumbnails below to dive in:
Hold on to your hoverboards. Nike has filed a patent on some technology that takes us right back to 2015: self-lacing sneakers that tighten or loosen your kicks just like the ones McFly donned in Back to the Future II.
Perhaps self-lacing is a stretch. To quote the patent filing: "The automatic lacing system provides a set of straps that can be automatically opened and closed to switch between a loosened and tightened position." Meaning they will have cinching straps rather than actual laces. But let's not mince words here, because these are awesome shoes.
This is a Lamborghini Countach. It was created by taking a hyper-accurate 3-D model of an actual Lamborghini (made up of millions of polygons), then gradually decreasing the resolution of the model with 3-D software until the object is lo-resed down to its stealthy essence. United Nude, a shoe company founded by Rem D. Koolhaas (nephew to the Rem Koolhass), is applying this interesting technique (which they've dubbed the "Lo Res Project") to its shoe designs.
Here's one of the first shoes to be designed with the process:
All the latest footwear engineering in your running sneakers might not mean a thing when it comes to preventing injuries. The latest barefoot running study in the journal Nature deployed 3-D infrared tracking to gauge the difference in foot strike between shod and shoeless runners, Scientific American reports. Here's a modern-day meme summation of the findings: "Shoes? You're doing it wrong."
Human running speeds top out near 28 mph, if the record-breaking feats of Jamaican speed demon Usain Bolt prove anything. But scientists say that the biological limits of human running could theoretically reach 35 or even 40 mph -- assuming that human muscle fibers could contract faster and allow people to pick up their pace.
In an earlier column, I suggested that shoe reviews are often not worth much, since everyone is so different. Well, that's exactly the logic behind the Somnio shoe I'm about to give a positive review. Somnio is the brainchild of Sean Sullivan, a long-time gear designer who created a shoe with modular parts, so you (or rather, the trained guy at the shoe store) can dial in just the right arch support and cushioning for your stride.