Aug 23rd, 2011

Lawsuits! Gotta love them on a beautiful summer afternoon – almost as refreshing as a cool glass of lemonade, in fact. We’ve got two stories for you this time. First up, Microsoft has filed with the ITC to have all Motorola phones (smart or dumb) banned from being imported, sold and advertised here in the United States.

Motorola’s allegedly infringing on 8 of Microsoft’s patents, with one relating to a phone being able to relay to an application things such as its signal strength and battery level. With that, it sounds like they’ll most likely go after Motorola in other regions. To be honest, there’s not much to say that hasn’t already been said – this is all just getting really, really stupid.

In slightly related news, Samsung continues to defend themselves against Apple in court, presenting new evidence today that shows they didn’t copy off iPad’s design when they sought out to make the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.

The piece of evidence is quite comical – a movie called “2001: A Space Odyssey Film”, a movie made in 1968 depicting how life would be like in the future. Sure enough, it was somewhat accurate as a season Samsung refers to portrays two astronauts using tablets while they eat. Here’s their statement to back the evidence up:

Attached hereto as Exhibit D is a true and correct copy of a still image taken from Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 film “2001: A Space Odyssey.” In a clip from that film lasting about one minute, two astronauts are eating and at the same time using personal tablet computers. The clip can be downloaded online at As with the design claimed by the D’889 Patent, 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.

You can’t really say they don’t have a point, either, though one must wonder whether or not this will hold up in court. While Apple had a physical product out for everyone before Samsung (and many others) did, Samsung had to go back over four decades to a movie their design team probably hasn’t even heard of – just calling it like I see it, folks.

As one YouTube user puts it, “It looks like a video monitor, not a computer, and no one used it, touched it, or did anything with it except watch it. Good luck with that one.” Unfortunately, this is how these patent and IP infringement lawsuits work – every bit of evidence will be scrutinized so much that they’ll get down to how it’s being used more than what it looks like. Video’s above for your enjoyment. [TechCrunch, FOSS Patents]

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