Back to the Future Fail? Today is October 21, 2015. Where is my hoverboard?

October 21st, 2015

I wrote this post on February 10, 2012 in eager anticipation that within three years, I would have a hoverboard. Alas, I predict it was not meant to be. Well, here’s hoping this blog still exists in 2015!

Update (2/23/2012): This is a start. Keep up the good work:

Update: 11/16/12- Slate tells me I won’t have a hoverboard.

And yes, we still have nearly three years until “Future Day,” social-media hoaxes notwithstanding. But perhaps it’s time we all faced up to the fact that we’re not getting our hoverboards—not by 2015, and quite possibly not in our lifetimes. At least, not without a DeLorean time machine.

Update: 4/30/13 – Popular Mechanics tells me I won’t have a hoverboard unless we can figure out superconductors!

Superconductivity may be the most practical way to achieve levitation, at least that engineers know about today. It doesn’t allow for the freedom of the Back to the Future Mattel board, which can move freely in all directions (but, for whatever reason, levitates but lacks propulsion over water).

Update: 12/27/14 – Vulture details why we won’t have a hoverboard anytime soon.

This fall not only marked the one-year countdown to October 21, 2015, the date on which Back to the Future II’s Marty and Doc arrive in the future, but it saw the announcement of the Hendo Hoverboard. Despite some obvious limitations(it only hovers over one particular surface), the gadget brings us a little closer to the 2015 imagined by the 25-year-old sequel.

We’re talking about a real hoverboard here, not Hendo’s hoverboard, which requires a specialized surface to hover. In BTTF II, the hoverboard Marty borrows from a young girl works on any surface except water. How far away is that? Frey is firmly noncommittal. “Ten years, 20 years, who knows?” he says. He’s not so quick to discount Hendo’s innovation, though, saying, “It’s an interesting breakthrough in thinking that dramatically brings a BTTF II–type device much closer.”