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Student Creates World's Fastest Shoe With a Printer

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the if-you-print-it-they-will-run dept.

United Kingdom 144

An anonymous reader writes "Engineer and designer Luc Fusaro from the Royal College of Art in London has developed a prototype running shoe that can be uniquely sculpted to any athlete's foot. It's as light as a feather too, weighing in at 96 grams. The prototype is aptly named, Designed to Win, and is 3D printed out of nylon polyamide powder, which is a very strong and lightweight material. The manufacturing process uses selective laser sintering (SLS), which fuses powdered materials with a CO2 laser to create an object. This process means 3D scans can be taken of the runner's foot so as to ensure the shoe matches the shape perfectly. Fusaro can also change the stiffness of the soles according to the athlete's physical abilities. The shoe can improve performance by 3.5%, meaning a 10 second 100-meter sprinter could see his time drop by 0.35 seconds, which is a huge time saving relatively speaking. Imagine if Usain Bolt put a pair of these running shoes on."

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144 comments

I'd say... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596593)

Usain Bolt could put on quite a shoe with those running shows.

Re:I'd say... (0)

million_monkeys (2480792) | about 2 years ago | (#40596725)

Usain Bolt could put on quite a shoe with those running shows.

In fairness, that typo is in the original article that the summary was copied from.

Re:I'd say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597141)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qo5H1g9c9Fc

Re:I'd say... (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#40597229)

Usain Bolt could put on quite a shoe with those running shows.

Shoe would scare the soles out his competitors...

nylon fumes (4, Insightful)

Gnaythan1 (214245) | about 2 years ago | (#40596599)

I wouldn't want to print this at home though... needs a specialty place... with a fume hood.

Re:nylon fumes (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596779)

...which is why you print the fume hood out first, then start printing nylon shoes.

Re:nylon fumes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597661)

with a fume hood.

It can't actually be that bad, not if there's any temperature control for heating the nylon. Burnt plastic gives off toxic fumes, warm/melted plastic is much less hazardous.

Regardless, I'd still run it in a big and reasonably well ventilated room or garage. ...Despite not being directly toxic, workplace microwaves absolutely need fume hoods (or food stench restrictions). some day, I'll snap. you'll see. they can't move my desk again. I used to have a window near my cubicle, and I could see the squirrels, and they were merry. and now they're after my stapler, but they wont have it. I could burn this place down.

A shoe with a printer? (5, Funny)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 2 years ago | (#40596613)

Why would I want a shoe with a printer?

Re:A shoe with a printer? (1)

erdos-bacon sandwich (2676113) | about 2 years ago | (#40596733)

Why would I want a shoe with a printer?

Maxwell Smart had a shoe with a phone. An unlisted shoe at that

Re:A shoe with a printer? (4, Funny)

oneiros27 (46144) | about 2 years ago | (#40596909)

So if his other shoe had a printer ... then he could receive faxes! brilliant!

Re:A shoe with a printer? (1, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#40597251)

So if his other shoe had a printer ... then he could receive faxes! brilliant!

Alas, the Samsung Intergalactic 10.1 shoe isn't allowed to be sold in the United States because Apple is pretty sure it would infringe upon supposed intellectual rights, should it decide to sell a similar shoe.

Re:A shoe with a printer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597253)

Yo dawg, we heard yo like printing and running.

Re:A shoe with a printer? (1)

Idbar (1034346) | about 2 years ago | (#40597351)

For one, you can ask the runners to train, while they are marking the track. Same for other sports!

Apply this to 5k runners, and you can have your city pavement properly marked. Change the 5k route and make one periodically, and the city is self sustaining!

The issue though is probably going to be the ink price :-(

that's great but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596657)

...I can beat that by quite some time with a bicycle, or a car, or a jet plane.

Sprints which depend on the choice of shoe aren't really comparing the abilities of the athletes, are they? And no marks for saying, "They're testing the ability of the athletes to choose their shoes/performance-enhancing drug/etc.!"

Re:that's great but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596925)

If the same shoe tech is available to all of them, I don't see a problem. And if it's not available to all of them, someone's clearly not a very good businessman.

Designer shoes (2)

Roberticus (1237374) | about 2 years ago | (#40596675)

I recently bought a pair of those glove-like shoes (where each toe gets its own slot) that doesn't fit my feet very well. It got me to wondering if someone could use a 3D printer and some orthogonal pictures of my feet to make a better-fitting pair. The article suggests it's certainly possible, but doesn't give any sense of cost.

Re:Designer shoes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596921)

Did you try on multiple sizes or just go for the size you normally wear? I had to drop down a full size from normal for the barefoot shoes like that, personally. First pair I bought didn't fit so well, so I returned them and walked out with the right size, which fit great now. Or they just don't make those shoes to fit your feet well, which seems odd to me...

Re:Designer shoes (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596957)

This, yeah, assuming he's talking about Vibram FiveFingers. You also want to buy a pair that fit perfectly but a hair too tight rather than a pair that fits too loose. They stretch. After three months the "too loose" pair will flop around on your foot like clown shoes. I'm on my second pair, and I love them.

Re:Designer shoes (1)

mattack2 (1165421) | about 2 years ago | (#40597897)

There's lots of other brands too. I think mine are Fila Skele-toes, but AFAIR, mine don't have laces like the ones on their site do.

Re:Designer shoes (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 2 years ago | (#40597319)

Ooh! Well they have 3D scanners, so I could see some software that could scan your foot in, then prints a perfectly-fitting toe-shoe for you! That would actually be pretty neat. I ran across an article a while back about printing "Fabric" with lots of tiny interlocking rings, sort of like chain mail. If you can do it inexpensively enough it wouldn't really matter how durable they are. Depending on how biodegradable they are, you could just print a new set every month or two and compost the old ones.

Re:Designer shoes (1)

trout007 (975317) | about 2 years ago | (#40597425)

I run in those and they are great. I was thinking about making an ultra light version by casting my feet in dental resin. Pouring a plaster of Paris positive. Then painting on some polyurethane.

Re:Designer shoes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597441)

One meeeeelion dollars.

Re:Designer shoes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40598601)

I can imagine it now: Amazon's Zappo Devision sends you a foot scanning kit for free, so long as you return it within 20 days or so... then upload your foot scan and any shoe you order will be made to fix your feet right the first time you order it. Of course, if you don't like the shoe returning it make be a problem for a refund. To deal with that, maybe you choose a test shoe type to decide if you like the look and feel, then return the test-shoe and they ship you the custom fit version.

Citation needed (5, Insightful)

metrometro (1092237) | about 2 years ago | (#40596701)

3D printing is neat and all, and congrats on a new use for the tech. But can we please put these one some people and run them around before saying bullshit like "Apparently the shoe can improve performance by 3.5%"?

Re:Citation needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596819)

What's funny about this is the juxtaposition of the two issues:
On one hand, 3d printing is a democratizing tool that makes specialty items like this more accessible to a larger populace.
On the other hand, there is a very, very small number of people for home a 3.5% difference in speed will make that much of a difference. (Of all the people in the world, there's the subset that are runners, then a subset that are competitive runners, then a yet smaller subset that is talented competitive runners, and then a minute subset that is talented competitive runners who differ by very small time deltas)

Now, if they could print this shoe out of a durable material that will provide a bit more protection against rocks, debris, and other shiggy, I would say it will have a much wider appeal.

Re:Citation needed (5, Funny)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#40597719)

Are you kidding? a 3.5% improvement would cut hours off of my 100 yard dash times.

Re:Citation needed (1)

GiMP (10923) | about 2 years ago | (#40598607)

You hit the nail on the head. I'm sure that a hand-made shoe could be made just as well as these, they'll just be more expensive. Bespoke shoes aren't new, and I can't imagine they'd be a new thing to runners, either. This will just lower the bar for amateurs.

Re:Citation needed (5, Informative)

reverseengineer (580922) | about 2 years ago | (#40596903)

The article gets that wrong-- the 3.5% improvement is not something that's been specifically observed in this shoe. From the designer's site [lucfusaro.com] , "Scientific investigations have shown that tuning the mechanical properties of a sprint shoe to the physical abilities of an athlete can improve performance by up to 3.5%...." Which is to say, some sort of study has been done to demonstrate that custom-made track spikes can deliver that kind of improvement, but no data exists for this shoe specifically. The release on that site even goes on to note,"Fusaro continues to fine-tune the shoe: The upper is still too stiff to offer optimum speed. More flexibility and comfort needs to be added to the shoe, using a combination of different material or additive manufacturing processes that can offer different flexibilities in the same product."

Re:Citation needed (1)

HapSlappy_2222 (1089149) | about 2 years ago | (#40597179)

I also liked the blanket, across the board, 3.5% improvement number. Because athletes are all built the same, and a 4 (or 14) minute mile is the same as a 7 (or 70) second 100 meter dash.

Re:Citation needed (1)

Sechr Nibw (1278786) | about 2 years ago | (#40596939)

Also, if the shoe improves performance by 3.5%, then wouldn't wearing a pair of them take that 100 meter 10 second time down to 9.3 seconds, instead of 9.65 seconds? /snark

Re:Citation needed (4, Insightful)

HapSlappy_2222 (1089149) | about 2 years ago | (#40597221)

Depends on how you fluff the math, as always. What if I said a 3.5% performance increase, but applied it to acceleration AND max speed, and then recalculated? I don't really want to do that math but I expect it'd be as far different number than a 3.5% better time.

People that abuse statistics are the dirtiest liars of all.

Re:Citation needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40598003)

Then I just need 10 pair and I'm off to the olympics. Do they still work if I carry them in a backpack?

Re:Citation needed (1)

strength_of_10_men (967050) | about 2 years ago | (#40597269)

From one of TFA:

Fusaro tested the shoe on several competitive sprinters in London and hopes to refine it for the 2016 Olympic Games

It's not much of a citation but apparently he did SOME kind of testing, though it's not clear what kind of testing was performed

Re:Citation needed (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#40597769)

From one of TFA:

Fusaro tested the shoe on several competitive sprinters in London and hopes to refine it for the 2016 Olympic Games

It's not much of a citation but apparently he did SOME kind of testing, though it's not clear what kind of testing was performed

Sure beats handing a pair to Dave Barry and watching him pull a hamstring out of the gate.

I certainly think Fusaro is on to something -- watching footballers break their metatarsals with the junk shoes they are currently wearing should be giving some priority, too.

Re:Citation needed (1)

GiMP (10923) | about 2 years ago | (#40598597)

I believe this can be true versus standard off-the-shelf running shoes. However, the advantage may not be that they're a radical new design than that they're bespoke. They just happen to be a very cost-effective bespoke shoe, rather than at the several-thousand-dollar-value mark that I imagine must be paid by Olympic athletes (or their sponsors).

Lame article (3, Informative)

tooyoung (853621) | about 2 years ago | (#40596715)

The article is essentially just the summary. The article links to another article, which is essentially just the summary too, although it mentions that the shoe has been tested on some world class athletes. No mention of the testing methodology though, for such a bold claim.

Re:Lame article (2)

Narrowband (2602733) | about 2 years ago | (#40596753)

It could at least specify what the 3.5 percent improvement is in comparison to. Otherwise it's pretty meaningless to make a "fastest shoe in the world" claim.

Re:Lame article (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#40596767)

Yeah 3.5% compared to what? What shoe was it compared against? Did he test it agaisnt runners who run barefoot? The Royal College of Art doesn't sound like a engineering school. (It could be, sometimes Art means sciences)

Re:Lame article (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#40597047)

I also wonder how you control for improvement in speed from practice. The first time someone runs thier speed will be different from the the 10th time they run. There would need to be controls on time of day, and food. Plus a large sample size. A percentage is meaningless without details of the test. The guy could be from a survery he handed out to handfull of people he showed the shoes too. Question 1: How much faster did my shoe make you? A) 3.5% B) 10% C) 50%

ponderous (2)

v1 (525388) | about 2 years ago | (#40596739)

Does make one wonder where the line needs to be drawn for enhancing equipment in competition like this?

I thought the original olympiads performed entirely naked? Even little things like swim caps can make quite a difference. Unless all the athletes have access to the same tech, it's not really fair?

And even if they all get it, then all it means is everyone improves by the same amount, and nobody really gets anywhere (relatively) besides breaking a few more world records.

Re:ponderous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596799)

They probably did, but then again the ancient Greeks and Romans didn't have as many hangups regarding nudity as many modern religious groups. Try getting a fundamentalist christian or muslim to agree to perform nude. See how well that goes over, nevermind the fact that video of the events would under almost every major societies broadcast laws fall under the definition of 'pornographic'. Still given the discussion of wild orgies and condom stands that was brought up on slashdot 2-3 olympics back, it sounds very much like the ancient greek/roman spirit of excess is still alive :D

Re:ponderous (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596837)

"They probably did, but then again the ancient Greeks and Romans didn't have as many hangups regarding nudity as many modern religious groups."
By 'modern' you mean roughly 1500-2000 year old religions?

Re:ponderous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597133)

modern religious groups != modern religions. you do not honestly believe mainstream religions these days follow the same creed they did millennia ago.

Re:ponderous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597565)

I actually put all of this as 'Post-Catholicism' since it was Constatine(sp?) who created the Catholic church as a means of control. As such I imagine most of the nudity related hangups came at some point after that (along with the clergy celibacy vows). All of those being in response to the excesses of the Roman Empire.

But maybe I'm wrong. IANAHS (I Am Not A History Scholar).

Re:ponderous (2)

kermidge (2221646) | about 2 years ago | (#40598225)

If I recall a-rightly, celibacy was a property matter - priest has a family they inherit a portion; no family, everything reverts to Church. The argument in favour of celibacy may've been cloaked by other stated reasons.

Obligatory Grammar Nazi Post (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40598289)

But maybe I'm wrong. IANAHS (I Am Not An History Scholar).

You're obviously not an english major, either! ;)

Re:ponderous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596839)

(oblig.)

I agree! I think that they should definitely go back to performing naked! Start with the women's beach volleyball, closely followed by the trampolining, tennis, etc..

I think it would probably lead to the dropping of women's shot put and weight lifting from the games though...

Re:ponderous (3, Insightful)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about 2 years ago | (#40597113)

For all practical purposes, the major contenders do get equal access to technology, because they all have the funding to buy from the same place. The underdogs compete with older equipment, and accept that the relative performance hit is part of what makes them underdogs. If their athletes still do well (better than the equipment's performance gap would explain), they're more likely to be well-funded in the next round.

Even with the best equipment available, the main contest is still one of skill. The best running shoe in the world won't help you if you don't have the endurance to use it or the stride to keep an appropriate pace. As I recall, some equipment will actually reduce an athlete's performance if they aren't already highly trained, because the gear is specialized for a particular use pattern. Even without the aid of a particular swimsuit, Michael Phelps is still clearly a spectacular swimmer.

In my opinion, the Olympic motto of "faster, higher, stronger" doesn't just apply to the athletes from the participating countries. It also applies to the human race as a whole, including our technology. There should be no limit to what technology's permitted as long as it meets three criteria:

  • The technology must not harm the athlete any more than the sport itself
  • The technology must not diminish the expression of the athlete's skill, nor replace any normally-functioning part of the athlete's body, except as required by the sport itself
  • If the technology cannot be transferred or adapted to a normal human body, it must not alter the characteristics of the athlete's body in any manner to improve their performance in the sport, except as required by the sport itself.

By this definition, almost all current training methods would be allowed, almost all prohibited substances would still be banned, and those who have medically-necessary prostheses would still compete at normal levels, as long as their prostheses don't give them superhuman performance (like extra shock absorption in a runner's legs). Any technology that's a part of the sport is obviously still allowed, just in case cyborg telekinetic dodgeball ever becomes an Olympic sport.

Re:ponderous (1)

John Hasler (414242) | about 2 years ago | (#40597177)

> ...the Olympic motto of "faster, higher, stronger"...

I thought the Olympic motto was "Winning is everything".

BTW aren't we going to get sued for using the word Olympic without a license?

Re:ponderous (3, Funny)

xaxa (988988) | about 2 years ago | (#40597379)

> ...the Olympic motto of "faster, higher, stronger"...

I thought the Olympic motto was "Winning is everything".

I think it's been changed to "i'm lovin' it".

Re:ponderous (2)

KiloByte (825081) | about 2 years ago | (#40597207)

Even with the best equipment available, the main contest is still one of skill.

Skill in hiding doping, to be exact.

Re:ponderous (1)

failedlogic (627314) | about 2 years ago | (#40598343)

The new swimsuits Speedo came out with caused quite a problem because it did give National / international caliber swimmers faster swims. I think even, what now 10 years after they came out, there's still controversy.

Access to equipment and technology has been debated for many years now in sports. My only quip about it, is it doesn't always work out. The exeception, I always think about is the Atlanta games. So many people were dropping out from heat exhaustion ... the Atlanta climate is special.

If the Olympics are supports to be "faster, higher, stronger" (sounds more like an ad for drugs :) !!!! ) then the games should be in a neutral location for climate, altitude (alpine skiing obviously has to be done at altitude) and political reasons. Everyone should have access to same equipment and be under the same scope of drug testing.

That said, assuming this shoe does provide a 3.5% difference (I've read other posts and this figure seems dubious), this is enough of a margin in Sprinting to give someone a shot at breaking a record. Not only that, but it would also be within the margin gained by using performance enhancing substances.

If anything, equipment is just one piece of the puzzle. There have been for many years, certain sports/events and nations suspect in cheating (doping, rigging judges) and so on in these world-class sports that I've personally tuned out.

Personally, I'd have loved to have been an Olympic Athlete. For some reasons though it sucks to be the athletes.

Re:ponderous (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#40598399)

If the Olympics are supports to be "faster, higher, stronger" (sounds more like an ad for drugs :) !!!! ) then the games should be in a neutral location for climate, altitude (alpine skiing obviously has to be done at altitude) and political reasons. Everyone should have access to same equipment and be under the same scope of drug testing.

They are and do. It seems to me that you merely state the obvious here. It's also worth noting that Olympics aren't intended to be consistent over time.

Re:ponderous (1)

HapSlappy_2222 (1089149) | about 2 years ago | (#40597247)

I think the line is basically drawn at performance enhancing chemicals and mechanical aids. I suppose this shoe could be considered a mechanical aid, but I rather think it's like a more the swim cap you mention. Besides, these types of judgements have to be kept at discretion; I know that when the Winter Olympics were in Salt Lake City, a lot of times were shattered due to the altitude, but other times were slower due to... the altitude. Was that an aid/detriment?

Re:ponderous (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 2 years ago | (#40598671)

Spectator sports were bullshit 2000 years ago, and are bullshit today. Only morons care. Case completely closed as far as I'm concerned.

Other than that, surely it must be nicer to run with a 96 gram shoe that fits perfectly, than with any old running shoe, so it's still a cool invention. (Just like soccer is a perfectly fine game, *until* people start piling into stadiums and waving flags ^^)

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40596829)

shower shoes with spikes are the track shoe of the future?

Just think! (2)

mythosaz (572040) | about 2 years ago | (#40596877)

>a 10 second 100-meter sprinter could see his time drop by 0.35 seconds

If it can increase performance by 100%, he can run it in zero seconds.

Math confuses Slashdot editors.

Re:Just think! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597067)

Natural language confuses maths nerd.

Re:Just think! (1)

slew (2918) | about 2 years ago | (#40597215)

>a 10 second 100-meter sprinter could see his time drop by 0.35 seconds
If it can increase performance by 100%, he can run it in zero seconds.
Math confuses Slashdot editors.

In defense of the submitter and the /. editors, this exact same math mistake was made in the original article (and 0.338...s is still pretty close to 0.35 seconds since 1/(1+x) ~ 1-x as a first order series approx)...

Of course the source website [lucfusaro.com] does not have this mistake, nor does it claim that this particular shoe has this specific level of improvement, only that vague "scientific investigations" have shown that tuning a shoe can improve performance as much as 3.5% and that he (luc fusaro) is still tuning his shoe...

Re:Just think! (2, Funny)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#40597767)

"scientific investigations" have shown that tuning a shoe can improve performance as much as 3.5% and that he (luc fusaro) is still tuning his shoe...

Hmmm.... So tuning both shoes would result in a 7% increase in performance, right?

Re:Just think! (1)

Jay L (74152) | about 2 years ago | (#40598585)

On a similar note.. growing up I had a scooter that would do 22mph with one rider, and 5mph with two.

I figure if I'd been able to fit seven people on it, I could go 80mph backwards.

running shows (1)

Maglos (667167) | about 2 years ago | (#40596893)

ahem, I don't mean to be pedantic but you've got a semantic error in your summary.

Re:running shows (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#40597153)

I'm tempted to say that you've made the semantic error, and the one in the summary is just a spelling mistake. Unless you were going for the rhythm (pedantic/semantic), in which case I could let it slide.

Other meaning of printer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597023)

... and here I thought I'd be able to jog and leave behind "JOE RAN HERE!"

Braaaaiiins (3, Insightful)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 2 years ago | (#40597033)

Imagine if Usain Bolt put a pair of these running shows on.

Have years of spell-check trained us all to type perfectly spelt, but completely incorrect words? Or did we always do this? I catch myself doing it all the time. I find it amazing that your brain can think up and type a completely unrelated word, but have enough sense to spell it correctly. And to read the sentence as you type it, somehow seeing the intended word. (I'm also nervously interesting in which words I inevitably screw up in this post.)

[lol, yeah I saw that in preview, but left it in.]

Re:Braaaaiiins (4, Insightful)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#40597167)

Don't attribute to a lazy brain that which is adequately explained by a fat finger.

Re:Braaaaiiins (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597837)

Don't attribute to a lazy brain that which is adequately explained by a fat finger.

I no your just Belushing him, butt may be his brine is a brittle fat to?

[Spell-check only complained about the Belushi-ism, hah! Another flawless post, without grammatical error.]

picking a base for 3.5% to make huge times diffs (1)

dingleberrie (545813) | about 2 years ago | (#40597049)

"The shoe can improve performance by 3.5%, meaning a 10 second 100-meter sprinter could see his time drop by 0.35 seconds, which is a huge time saving relatively speaking. Imagine if Usain Bolt put a pair of these running shows on."

soooo... technically it could be a huger time savings if I put them on? ...or even huger-er if we put them on gimps.

with the shoes, you look (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597051)

gay, but you run fast, so I guess...

My Daughter is a Sprinter (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 2 years ago | (#40597059)

Shaving 0.35 seconds can get you from 5th place to 1st. I've seen it happen. Snap time of the leg advancing is critical in the first 2 seconds. If this shoe can do it, and last the race. I think I'll get a 3D printer too!

Cool shoes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40597065)

At my work, the managers are required to wear the workgroup versions of the shoes, so they can more directly monitor printing costs for their departments. HP is making new inks for them that also have anti-fungals. Last year they added Febreze to the ink, too.

Oh, wait. You mean that the printer makes the shoes? Hmm...

These already exist (1)

bky1701 (979071) | about 2 years ago | (#40597101)

They're called feet. Still can't figure out the sigma behind using them without the addition of all these rubber dongles. Guess that's just the way it has been done for a hundred years.

Re:These already exist (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 2 years ago | (#40597341)

The rubber dongles are so they don't get cut, and you don't get gangrene. I used to run around barefoot a lot in Hawaii when I was a boy (I'm not Obama!) and had my fair share of foot cuts from nails and broken glass. Not to mention those nasty sticker plants. They're nasty in Hawaii, and much much nastier in Colorado. Here in Colorado they like to ride in on your pant legs and stick you in the foot in the house. Thaaat really sucks.

Re:These already exist (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 2 years ago | (#40597857)

Where I live (in Lake county, California) we have about three varieties of burrs, several minuscule stabby things, star thistle, and poison oak... on top of some of the rockiest soil this side of the rockies. I can't even go to the BBQ without shoes. I used to go about Santa Cruz barefoot all year, and then I only had to worry about having disgusting black-soled feet, and the occasional piece of glass, for the most part.

Re:These already exist (1)

PRMan (959735) | about 2 years ago | (#40597867)

I used to run around barefoot a lot in Hawaii when I was a boy (I'm not Obama!)

Clearly not! Because you were born in Hawaii...I kid, I kid...

Re:These already exist (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 2 years ago | (#40598193)

My going joke is that I was actually born in Kenya. I'm pretty sure if I ran for president, Donald Trump wouldn't question MY birth certificate. I almost wish I was in a position to be able to run, just to make him question it.

I don't care (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about 2 years ago | (#40597271)

... about improvements for top athletes and elitists. I want my own pair of *perfectly* moulded vibram five fingers! That is an idea I'd want to get behind :D

Who cares? (1)

InspectorGadget1964 (2439148) | about 2 years ago | (#40597733)

If he were able to solve important problems, I would be impressed, runnig faster? Not important when there are thousands of people starving to death.

Truly helpful tech (1)

auf_weiderzen (105189) | about 2 years ago | (#40597875)

The biggest breakthrough I see in this is the lessened need for shoes to be manufactured (to an extent) by hand. If Nike hops on the bandwagon, they could not only drive the push for better mass-production versions of rapid-prototyping machines like SLS printers, but also reduce the usage of child laborers. Next up: soccer balls.

Or... (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#40598405)

If Justin Gatlin put a pair of these shoes on, a non-Jamaican would hold the world 100m record (If they never found out he was on drugs).

World's best fitting condom (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40598415)

scan it, print it, perfect fit inside, customizable (colors, textures, etc) outside.

You read it here first ...

Improve 100 meters? I don't think so. (1)

Kaz Kylheku (1484) | about 2 years ago | (#40598791)

Sprinting shoes are basically just a slipper with a spike plate in the toe.

A light road racing shoe can improve 5K, 10K and marathon times, though, compared to a heavy jogging shoe.

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