A US inventor who built a pair of self-lacing shoes has now found herself in a race with Nike to get them to market.
Blake Bevin, 27, from San Francisco, created a version of Nike “Air Kicks” as a self-interest project back in July.
Based on Marty McFly’s auto-lacing shoes from Back to the Future II, they feature a motorized self-lacing system and the video of them in operation drew over a million views on YouTube.
That and enough geek publicity and support to encourage Ms. Bevin to improve on her futuristic footwear’s “laughable looks and simplistic function” and start thinking seriously about a salable version.
“I was constantly getting messages how my shoe was in some foreign newspaper, or on Fox News, or some other place outside of the internet, “It was pretty thrilling, seeing something I made almost as a goof get that kind of recognition.”
Ms. Bevin was surprised to find there was also a serious side to her tinkering.
After people with motor skill disabilities and their families noted the self-help benefits of her system, her “goof project” didn’t seem like such a throwaway idea.
Now, 21 years after Marty McFly first activated his Air Kicks, it seems the giant global brand behind the original concept doesn’t think so either.
While Ms. Bevin was working on version 2.0, news broke that Nike had applied for a patent on the technology late last year.
Want to become an investor? Check out Ms. Bevin’s Kickstarter page and make a pledge!