Showing its lighter side, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Museum in Alexandria, Va., on Thursday opened an exhibit called "
The summer exhibit showcases the history of patented footwear and various shoe technology from the 19th century to the present, as well as patent-pending commercial innovations.
The Cougar Paws' Duraflex roofing boots with detachable soles that allow roofers to change grip depending on the type of roof, or roofing project stage, were on display.
Got cold feet? Shoes using the aerogel material developed for NASA astronauts are also part of the exhibit. The nanotechnology material, now being sold as an innersole, keeps feet warm and blood circulating even in extreme cold.
"I imagine it (aerogel) will be as big as Gortex a one point," said Mitch Scott, senior designer for the exhibit.
In addition to the technological aspect, the exhibit also hosts innovative shoe styles worn by First Ladies, Shaquille O'Neal's size 23 sneakers, and the Manolo Blahniks of "Sex in the City" fame.