This weekend, at the annual South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas, Google unveiled an early prototype of motion-sensing “smart shoes,” with an embedded speaker on the tongue of the shoe that can yell motivation at you when you’re being lazy, or encourage you when you’re being active.
The next-gen footwear was developed as part of a thought experiment on how wearable technology could interact with the human body and with the Internet. (The shoe, of course, is able to post status updates to Google+, and the video advertisement below shows the shoe with its own Google+ profile.)
The connected shoe isn’t a totally novel idea, of course: Nike has long made sneakers with sensors in them to measure your workouts. A shoe with a personality, however, that actually speaks to you in a human voice, is a bit of a novelty. That it’s got a dash of Joan Rivers wit only sweetens the final product.