Shift Robotics unveiled what it claims is the "world's fastest shoes," which allow you to "walk at the speed of a run."
The Pittsburgh-based engineering company launched a Kickstarter campaign(Opens in a new window) last week for the shoes, which they're calling "Moonwalkers."
Reminiscent of those plastic strap-on roller skates kids wear, Moonwalkers use a combination of AI and machine learning to help the wearer move much more swiftly than they can in a typical pair of shoes, and without having to actually run.
A brushless DC motor distributes power across eight plastic wheels, which react to the natural movement of each ankle to transition between Shift (go) and Lock (stop) modes. A front hinge allows the foot to naturally bend at the toes, preserving mobility and balance, while an electronic multi-layer brake protection system allows you to use stairs, elevators, and mass transit without fear of falling on your face.
"Walk how you usually do, and our AI adapts to you," the Shift Robotics website(Opens in a new window) explains. "It's not skating; it's genuinely walking, so no new skills are necessary to learn. The learning curve is typically under 10 steps. To walk faster, you just walk faster. To slow down, walk slower. To stop, well, you stop walking."