Over at Instructables, as part of their USB project contest, blakebevin has created a pair of auto-lacing shoes, ala Back to the Future II.
In this project she has replaced the standard laces with cords that are attached to servomotors. She has also incorporated a pressure sensor to detect when you put your foot in, so the laces can tighten automatically. The top lace tightens first, followed by the rest. A button on the rear releases the laces so you can remove your foot.
An arduino with a motor shield detects the foot insertion and tightens the laces. USB comes into play by virtue of the fact that you download the firmware to the Arduino via USB.
The shoes themselves don’t look like the Nikes that Michael J. Fox wore in the movie, in fact they don’t look like anything I’ve ever seen before, but then I live pretty far off the beaten path fashionwise.Actually these shoes kind of remind me of a pair of bright red “Sammy Hagar” Nike high tops my pal Greg wore in high school — they have that same 80s look, which is appropriate for a Back to the Future riff. Speaking of which, in Back to the Future II, the future date than Michael J. Fox visited with “Doc” Brown was (is?) October 21, 2015, meaning you gadget freaks out there better get cracking if we’re going to see real auto-lacing shoes, hoverboards, or “Mr. Fusion” by then.
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