Have you ever done something on a total whim, never thinking it would develop into anything approaching real or legitimate? That’s what Blake Bevin did. She entered a concept into Indestructibles.com, a website geared towards prototypes and gags for the science geek, she handmade her prototype, and recorded a video to show the judges. This video was uploaded to YouTube… by the end of a week it had garnered over a million views. So this got Blake thinking, could there be a practical application for her Power Laces?
Blake based her design on the Marty McFly Nike Air Mags from the nineteen eighty nine movie Back To The Future, but her design is more sophisticated and totally different. The video above is the first prototype that Blake made up, it’s a bit chunky and is held together by duct tape. But her newer prototypes are a lot more streamlined. The mechanism is contained within the shoe and the laces are activated and loosened with buttons on the shoe itself. However, Blake is in the process of developing a system that is totally hands free so it can be activated and deactivated simply by slipping your foot into the sneaker.
Blake has a Kickstarter page where you can donate towards getting Power Laces ready for mass marketing and distribution. As of October 10 2010, the project reached it’s goal of US$25,000! So backers are already receiving the swag as promised. As you will see in the video on the Kickstarter site, the application is by no means for the lazy but will be practical for disabled people that want to be as independent as possible.
Blake can be contacted on the Power Laces website for more information on how to contribute to the development of the Power Laces as well as get regular updates on how the project is progressing.