Great Scott! It’s Back to the Future Day!
Here at Formaspace, we love to think about the future. It’s part of our culture, and it is the basis of our vision statement: Formaspace… for What’s Next. So we can’t resist celebrating Back to the Future Day, which if you don’t remember is the day that Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) and Dr. Emmett “Doc” Brown (played by Christopher Lloyd) travel from the late 1980s to today, October 21, 2015.
Sure, you might say we are getting caught up in a tidal wave of corporate product placement and self-serving promotion. To that we’d say: you are correct! That’s what Hollywood blockbuster movie trilogies are all about, so let’s just go with the capacitor-flux flow and enjoy it.
Let the Merchandising Begin!
Eager to capitalize on their product placement in the original Back to the Future II film, Pepsi has created a limited edition “Pepsi Perfect” soda line, which will go on sale today only. It’s understood that they will manufacture only about 6000 units, so expect to see these collectible Pepsi soda bottles making the rounds on eBay in the coming weeks.
Rumor has it the Pepsi special edition will go on sale precisely at 4:29 p.m. Meanwhile, footwear manufacturer Nike posted a vague tweet that it will see Marty McFly today. This has led to widespread speculation that Nike will launch a special edition of self lacing sneakers inspired by the film later today.
Meanwhile, Toyota is completely upfront with its corporate tie-in promoting their hydrogen-powered Mirai passenger vehicle. They created a short film where they meet up with the present day actors Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, who, reprising their famous film roles learn all about how garbage can be transformed into fuel to power the high-tech Mirai car. Toyota also held a product launch event in Hollywood to maximize media coverage of their product placement.
To be sure, the Mirai is not propelled by a plutonium-powered flux-capacitor like the famed DeLorean in the Back to the Future movie trilogy. However, its hydrogen powered fuel cell technology — which releases oxygen and water vapor to the atmosphere — seems quite futuristic to us.
Ahhh yes! Flying Cars! We want Flying Cars!
When are we going to be driving (piloting?) flying cars? At Formaspace, we love flying and aviation. In fact our CEO Jeff Turk is a licensed helicopter pilot who performs volunteer search and rescue operations. Here you can see Jeff pilot his helicopter, making a perfect landing on a pair of heavy duty Formaspace workbenches.
So where are the flying cars that we were promised in the back to the future movie trilogy? One of the most advanced prototypes is the AeroMobil 3.0, shown in the video clip above at the Pioneers Festival in Vienna, Austria. That ride looks pretty sweet! It’s the perfect vehicle to get across Austin during the Austin City Limits music Festival traffic jams!
So we have covered many of the futuristic predictions from the Back to the Future movie series, including futuristic soft drink colas, self-lacing Nike shoes, flux-capacitor powered flying cars? What’s next? Hoverboards, of course! First up in the hoverboard technology competition is Toyota’s luxury division, Lexus with their realistic demonstration of a floating skateboard. While not quite as thin as the hoverboard from the movie, the Lexus design, called SLIDE, is very impressive.
It’s a bit of a magician’s trick however, as it uses superconductors and magnets to achieve the required lift. In other words, this is a special set where magnetic materials are embedded in the concrete surfaces. Another clue is the little wisps of smoke trailing off the side of the hoverboard: that’s liquid nitrogen chilled to a temperature of -321°F that’s off-gassing.
Lexus is not the only one pursuing a floating over board inspired by the Back to the Future movie series. Technology startup company Arx Pax reputedly raised over half $1 million on Kickstarter to build the Hendo. Now in its second generation, the Hendo 2.0 gives rider a true floating skateboard experience.
But, like the SLIDE from Lexis, the Hendo also requires a magnetic repulsing surface for this effect to work. At the tail end of the Hendo video above, they talk about how the levitation technology is applicable to the mag-lev (short for magnetic levitation) train proposed by Elon Musk, dubbed the Hyperloop.
Elon Musk, one of the original founders of PayPal, is famously running two companies full-time: the electric car and now battery company Tesla and the space exploration company Space-X. In his spare time, Musk is also promoting the Hyperloop Project, which would be a series of train cars in enclosed tubes, allowing passengers to travel at record speeds between cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco. In the video above, Hyperloop’s Dirk Ahlborn presents an overview of a transportation mode, we might see in the next 20 years. We can’t wait for the future to come!
Formaspace is Looking to the Future
We invite you to join the roster of satisfied Formaspace technical, manufacturing and laboratory furniture clients — including Apple Computer, Boeing, Dell, Eli Lilly, Exxon Mobile, Ford, General Electric, Intel, Lockheed Martin, Medtronic, NASA, Novartis, Stanford University, Toyota and more.
Give us a call today at 800.251.1505 to find out more about the Formaspace line of built-to-order computer workstations, industrial workbenches, laboratory furniture, lab benches and dry lab/wet labs — as well as our design / furniture consulting services. Like all Formaspace furniture, it’s backed by our famous 12 year, three shift guarantee.