It was the contagious kerfuffle over Nike’s Back to the Future moonboots that
got us thinking recently. Having finally seen them with our own eyes, we were
more than impressed with the overall quality of the finished article. The lights
shine brighter than a glowstick in a rave and the charity angle with Michael J Fox
was the icing on this ultimate cheese cake. However, there was one thing missing.
Where were the Power Laces?
The combination of Nike’s impressively vague trademark applications coupled
with Tinker Hatfield on YouTube reminding us to wait for 2015 stimulated many
into thinking Power Laces might actually be on the blackboard over at Nike’s
advanced design studio. Kids want the magic so bad they can taste it, but who
knows if Hatfield, a renowned joker, is merely pulling our collective leg? Stranger
things have happened. It’s certainly added a fifth dimension to the future of this
A quick glance at YouTube reveals backyard Einsteins are already hotrodding
electronic bits’n’pieces together to make their own Power Laces. Some of them
are pretty funny, one of them even works, but as we mulled it over some more,
it occurred to us that over hundreds of years, laces are the one aspect of shoe
design that has never really evolved. Sure Velcro was invented in the 1940s and
Royal Elastics got big in the 90s on the idea that slip-ons were the future of cool,
but where are they now?
However, that’s not to say the industry hasn’t tried to come up with a value-added
alternative over the years. Out of intellectual curiousity, we racked our brains
and consulted the history books, coming to the conclusion that PUMA’s Disc
concept from the early 90s is the only credible attempt at seriously cracking the
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