Lexus just revealed it's created a working hoverboard--you know, because there was all that free time left over from manufacturing some of the best cars on the planet. The Lexus Hoverboard is exactly what you're thinking it is: a Marty McFly wheel-less skateboard suspended in the air. The hoverboard melds Lexus's recognizable lines with a polished wooden deck, and a beefy undercarriage holds a cryostat to cool liquid nitrogen.
The Lexus hoverboard isn't the first attempt at recreating the Back to the Future concept: last year, Hendo raised over $500,000 in a Kickstarter for their working hoverboard, but it was significantly larger and heavier than the new Lexus model. Both hoverboards, however, are limited in capabilities and confined to a very small area. The Lexus hoverboard uses magnetic levitation with liquid nitrogen-cooled super conductors, but relies on magnets that are permanently embedded into the ground. Needless to say, the lack of embedded magnets in pedestrian sidewalks limits the hoverboard's ability to function in the real world. However, while the hoverboard needs a strong magnetic field to work properly at the moment, that doesn't mean it's simply impossible for Lexus's one-off invention to become a feasible mode of transportation in the future.
Most compelling about Lexus's willingness to dive into projects like the hoverboard is that, if they perfect the concept, it could be used for bikes and cars and trains. Not only that, magnetic repulsion could be applicable to everything from bar stools to entire homes. Sure, it's just a very limited prototype, but electrical engineers could surely find a way to eliminate the limitations. After all, they've done it with personal computing, why not personal transportation?