Feeds

Apple granted patent for ebook page-turning

Intellectual property protection run amuck?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Adding another weapon to the Cupertian arsenal being wielded in the ongoing patent wars, the US Patent and Trademark office has granted Apple a new design patent, D670,713, entitled "Display screen or portion thereof with animated graphical user interface".

The patent is one the briefest we've seen in our coverage of the strange and mysterious workings of the USPTO. Here is the text of the patent's Description subsection, in toto:

Illustration for Apple design patent, 'Display screen or portion thereof with animated graphical user interface'
FIG. 1 is a front view of a a [sic] display screen or portion thereof with animated graphical user interface showing a first image in the sequence showing our new design;

FIG. 2 is a second image thereof; and,

FIG. 3 is a third image thereof.

The broken lines in the Figures show portions of a display screen or portion thereof with animated graphical user interface and portions of the display screen or portion thereof which form no part of the claimed design.

The appearance of the animated images sequentially transitions between the images shown in FIGS. 1-3. The process or period in which one image transitions to another forms no part of the claimed design.

This massively complex concept required three inventors to craft it: Elizabeth Caroline Cranfill, Mikio Inose, and Stephen Lemay. The trio submitted application D/408,904 on December 19, 2011, and this Tuesday it was consecrated by the USPTO and awarded to Apple, Inc. as design patent D670,713.

As you can see in the three figures to the right, what the patent covers is an animation of the turning of a page, presumably in an e-book – although patents being patents, it's not impossible that it could be extended to other applications, as well.

As we see it, patents are necessary and valuable tools for protecting intellectual property. That said, as with any tool, their use should be judicious, aimed at fostering innovation and increasing competition by safeguarding inventors and companies that are willing to risk capital to bring their unique creations to market.

The Reg remains unconvinced that granting a design patent for an animated page-turn meets those criteria. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer
Melty but refreshing - popular rival to Mint's Cinnamon's still a work in progress
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Put down that Oracle database patch: It could cost $23,000 per CPU
On-by-default INMEMORY tech a boon for developers ... as long as they can afford it
Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over
Plenty on new CEO's todo list – starting with Firefox's slipping grasp
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.