In 2008 a complaint was lodged against Apple that the company was infringing on three patents owned by Mirror Worlds, a small company founded at Yale University by Professor David Gelernter. The offending software in question was Spotlight, Time Machine and Cover Flow. Towards the end of 2010 the federal jury awarded the Mirror Worlds $208.5 million in damages for each alleged infringement. Apple lawyer Jeffrey Randall argued that Mirror World patents had been sold for $210,000, and then $5 million, and that the company was not worth more than that. However Leonard Davis, a judge, has now thrown out the original by Mirror Worlds saying the "claimant had failed to properly make their case."
According to the BBC, the squabble "centered on how documents are displayed on-screen - particularly the 'card-flipping' technique utilised when a user scrolls through music in their iTunes library". Although Judge Davis upheld the complaint he said "Mirror Worlds may have painted an appealing picture for the jury," "But it failed to lay a solid foundation sufficient to support important elements it was required to establish under the law."
Apple is no stranger to the court room having previously been taken to court by for numerous reasons including privacy breaches, Motorola patent issues, iPhone 4 problems and of course a 2010 counter-sue after they filed a suit against HTC.