Transcending time, space, and our perception of reality, Nike has brought us the shoe that no one that possible outside the realms of science fiction: the HyperAdapt 1.0
Wired has brought us an exclusive look into Nike’s underground lab and secret world, showcasing one of the shoe company’s newest releases, and longest-running research efforts: the futuristic self-lacing shoe. In 1985, the world was introduced to Back to the Future, and the Nike Mag: a shoe of the future, with the capability to light up, come alive, and most importantly, lace itself. It was something the world had never seen before, and the reaction from fans was visceral: petitions, letters, demonstrations followed. Its creators, Tinker Hatfield and Mark Parker, were determined to make their groundbreaking idea a reality.
"We're talking about a project that's maybe the most difficult in the history of footwear. I'm more excited about this than any project I've ever been involved with." Tinker Hatfield
Wired takes us through a decades-long story; through the trials, tribulations, successes and failures of the creative team behind one of the most revolutionary products of our time. The HyperAdapt 1.0 isn’t just a shoe, it’s a symbol of the power that ingenuity and persistence can create. And after almost 30 years, Nike will finally ship their self-lacing shoe to be available this holiday season.
The company is calling the technology "adaptive fit," and the sneaker is the HyperAdapt 1.0--each shoe has a sensor, battery, motor, and cable system that adjusts fit based on an algorithmic pressure equation. When a foot is inserted, the shoe tightens automatically until it senses friction points. There are a pair of buttons near the tongue to adjust fit as needed.
Spearheading the engineering of the HyperAdapt was Tiffany Beers, a senior innovator at Nike, and the woman responsible in a large part for making adaptive fit a reality. Beers became an expert in motors and batteries to develop the shoe, and has been working since 2005 to bring the interactive shoe to life. She and her team have worked tirelessly to perfect what still seems to be a piece of non-fiction fantasy.
The HyperAdapt 1.0 will certainly push the limits of what footwear can do, as well as the bounds of our collective imagination. By focusing on making shoes adapt to the athletes that wear them, Nike is bringing to the forefront a new frontier in sports, footwear and functionality.
You can read the whole story here.