Can you patent a shape? That is a question so many media outlets have been asking since Apple's more generic design patents have gotten more legal attention, and unfortunately, it's resulted in a rather severe oversimplification of just what a design patent is, and what it can protect. Yesterday, Wired reported that Apple finally received a long-awaited design patent on the shape of the iPad, a patent which lists none other than Steve Jobs himself as a co-inventor (and, of course, Jonathan Ive).
It seems Apple is getting far more than it bargained for in its failed iPad lawsuit in the UK, having been ordered by a judge there to run statements in both print and on its website clearly stating that Samsung's Galaxy Tab had not copied the company's own tablet. Of course, when Apple ran the apology on its UK website, it was one paragraph of acknowledgement of the judgment, and four paragraphs of reasons why that judgment was stupid, essentially.