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A look at the making of the Lexus SLIDE Hoverboard

Ever since Back to the Future 2 we have all been dreaming about the day when we would see a hoverboard come to life. A few weeks ago Lexus released a jaw dropping teaser for their new SLIDE hoverboard where it looked like that dream has finally come true. Lexus worked with scientists from IFW Dresden and Evico GmbH and took more than a year to go from concept to realizing the dream of a real magnetic levitation hoverboard and accompanying hover park. The video above shows pro skater Ross McGouran riding the board in a hover park outside of Barcelona.

After watching the first video it seemed like the technology was truly magical and the board looked amazing. The problem is that I think the video was clearly created to make a sensation and grab a lot of press but then when I watched the second video about how the board was created I was actually disappointed. In the second video (above) it shows the behind the scenes process of how the board was conceived, tested and designed. I was disappointed when it is revealed that the magical looking board is actual riding on a set magnetic track that is hidden in the hover park and that the board won’t just floating on any surface. This is one place where I think pulling back the marketing a little or tell more of the whole story of how the board worked might have actually been a better move than creating an assumption that isn’t real.

The marketing misstep aside, I think this is an incredibly cool innovation and an interesting new chapter for Lexus. They have not been a brand that I thought of as being a real technology innovator so it will be interesting to see if this was just a one time press grabbing event or of it something that they will be able to baking into the DNA of the brand and their products.

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Creative Director, Designer, Brand Builder, Speaker, Podcaster, Crazy One. As a designer, I have 20+ years experience creating the strategy, concepts, and designs for award-winning integrated global advertising campaigns, building multiple global Fortune 500 brands and creating innovative digital experiences. As a leader, I have 15+ years transforming agency and client-side teams using a mix of creativity, business strategy, process and political skill to create innovative, world-class work and cultures that change industries and companies. My clients have included American Airlines, W Hotels, Disney, Citi, ExxonMobil, Acura, Old Navy, Nationwide Insurance, Verizon, Subaru and many others. My work has received over 150 international awards, my app designs have been named as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Apps, Apple has featured my work in 9 keynotes, 4 TV commercials and more.

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