In the ongoing patent battle waged by Samsung and Apple, score one point for Samsung—at least in terms of originality. Apple is arguing that the design of Samsung's products is too similar to that of its iPhone and iPad. Samsung, in turn, is trying to argue that it's not infringing on a design patent ... because Apple never should have been awarded that patent in the first place. Why? In a declaration filed in federal court on Monday, Samsung argues that the iPad's design had already been imagined, and points to Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey as proof.
"In a clip from that film lasting about one minute, two astronauts are eating and at the same time using personal tablet computers,” wrote the lawyer, in a filing first noticed by the FOSS Patents blog. Just like the design Apple patented, "the tablet disclosed in the clip has an overall rectangular shape with a dominant display screen, narrow borders, a predominately flat front surface, a flat back surface (which is evident because the tablets are lying flat on the table’s surface), and a thin form factor." The declaration also mentioned other "prior art," notes the Wall Street Journal, including images from 1970s Brit TV show The Tomorrow People. (In other patent battle news, score one point, Apple.)