What Back To The Future II got right
WEDNESDAY - Oct 21, 2015, to be precise - was supposed to be the day Marty McFly travelled from 1985 to a future of flying cars and hoverboards in the sequel to the Back To The Future movie.
A number of gizmos from the future in the 1989 hit film have materialised, including video calls, glasses that can display video, hoverboards and even a flying car (not quite as cool as the ones from the film though).
Not all of them are ready for consumers to buy yet, but Oct 21 has nonetheless been dubbed Back To The Future Day.
And there is quite a bit of related gear around - some of which you can buy, according to Hardwarezone.com.sg. Here is a look at some Back To The Future goods, old and new.
In 2011, Nike released a pair of kicks that did not actually feature the self-lacing technology seen in Back To The Future II. But for sheer looks alone, the Nike Mag shoes could not be beaten. They are official and look exactly like the power-lace sneakers in the movie.
The problem, then, was getting your hands on them.
To date, there are only 1,510 pairs of the 2011 Nike Mags in existence, and all of them have been sold to collectors the world over, with prices ranging from US$2,300 to US$9,959 when the shoes were on auction back in 2011.
That's right, these shoes were never sold in stores. Instead, they were only sold through special online auctions, with proceeds going to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for research on Parkinson's disease. Fox, who played Marty in the movies, has the condition.
You can get cheaper ones (without the Nike brand) at Halloween Costumes if you do not want to mortgage your house.
But there is hope for die-hards. After several teases, Nike announced on Wednesday the 2015 edition of the Nike Mag sneakers, this time with actual self-lacing technology.
Nike said the lacing tech is an "individually responsive system that senses the wearer's motion to provide adaptive on-demand comfort and support", Mashable reported. "But this is just the first iteration," Nike added.
There was no word on how much they would go for, but Nike said the shoes are a "limited edition" release.
They will also be available only through an auction, with all proceeds going to the Michael J. Fox Foundation.
Details of the auction will be announced in spring next year. That's also when the shoes will be available.
But in case you're wondering, Fox was on Wednesday night's Jimmy Kimmel Live! TV show wearing the sneakers and showing off their self-lacing capabilities.
Tech firm Arx Pax has developed an actual skateboard that really does float - using magnetism. But this also means the gizmo, called the Hendo Hoverboard, can only hover when used over a special surface, in this case, a metallic one, like copper, that conducts electricity.
It was funded on Kickstarter last year, but to actually own a Hendo Hoverboard, you had to effectively cough up US$10,000.
Even then, supply was limited, with just 11 units available, according to the gadget's Kickstarter webpage.
Another caveat is that you can only hover on the board for about 10 to 15 minutes before the battery runs flat. It takes one to two hours to charge it.
To celebrate Back To The Future Day, Arx Pax unveiled a slimmer version of the Hendo Hoverboard which is supposed to be quieter and more energy-efficient than the original, reported architecture and design magazine Dezeen.com.
Pricing and commercial availability details were not apparent, though.
Not to be outdone, luxury car brand Lexus teased at its Slide hoverboard in June and followed up with a video demonstration of the actual gadget in August, said CNet.
While the Slide also uses magnetism to levitate, it does so using superconductors. The trouble, as Wired pointed out, is that it only works over a surface with magnets embedded in it.
Also, the superconductors used only impart their hovering ability if they are kept very cool - think liquid nitrogen cold.
Another thing: it is a prototype and not for sale.
"Still, the effect is quite amazing to watch - particularly when it floats across water," noted CNet of the Slide in the video.
But if you really must have a hoverboard, there are replicas from Kids Logic to sate your inner fanboy.
These 1:6 scale hoverboards are just a fraction of the price you would pay for an actual Hendo one. There are replicas of Marty's hoverboard and those belonging to Griff (Marty's nemesis) and his goons.
Floating on a special magnetic base, the boards can steadily hover in place. Alternatively, there is a scaled-down DeLorean car by Kids Logic that can hover over the base too.
Pre-orders for the replicas - set for release next year - were up on some Singapore collectible stores several weeks ago (about $160 for a set of five hoverboards; around $270 for the DeLorean). But you might still be able to put in an order with them, or through online hobby stores.
FLUX CAPACITOR REPLICA
The flux capacitor is what makes time travel possible in the movies, and now you can own your very own, sort of.
Get a phonebook-sized replica from Diamond Select Toys for US$395 (S$550) or a smaller flux capacitor USB car charger from Think Geek for a more affordable US$24.99. Time-travel abilities not included.
BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE COMPLETE ADVENTURES (BLU-RAY & DVD)
Yes, it is yet another Back To The Future Blu-ray trilogy release, but what makes this release stand out from all the others before it is the fact that it includes not only the three main films, but also various extras all wrapped up in a flux capacitor-like package.
These include: the new original short Doc Brown Saves The World! starring Christopher Lloyd; Looking Back To The Future, a nine-part documentary from 2009 on the trilogy; the complete animated series based off the films; and Back To The Future: A Visual History 64-page book.
Amazon.com retails the Blu-ray set for about US$90 (not everything is on Blu-ray, though) while the DVD set goes for about US$60.