The wall syncs with an iPhone app to highlight routes and analyze speed and other data points.
Climbing walls have come a long way since phys ed lecturer Don Robinson glued real rocks to a hallway wall at Leeds University in 1964. Just down the street from my office, walls made of plywood reinforced with steel frames sport dozens of different types of holds and graded "problems" -- perfect for staying in shape during the rainy winter months in Portland.
But not everyone lives within walking distance of an indoor climbing hub, so Munich-based design studio Lunar Europe thought up a pretty sleek art piece that doubles as a climbing wall and syncs up with an iPhone app.
Instead of the traditional wall with bulging holds, the Nova inverts the approach using cutout patterns for the climber's hands and feet to hook into. What's more, these patterned holes are filled with sensors that record and analyze climbing sessions. The user can select routes by difficulty, follow the lighted pathway, and even race the clock.