Originally Posted by muppetry
Except that your original quote above clearly refers to representations of "inventions" being used to invalidate design patents, so it is not irrelevant. I assumed that your argument was that an invention had been depicted back then that could now invalidate Apples design patent claim? Maybe I misunderstood your point.
I didn't write the original statement, DED wrote it. I think that a better word could have been used. Perhaps "object"?
For example, the Statue of Liberty received a design patent, but it is a piece of art, and not an invention. So design patents can cover the design of an invention, but can cover other objects as well.
The point is that if somebody gets a design patent for their object, but they merely copied pre-existing design, like Apple is claimed to have done, their design patent can be invalidated. The object could be an invention, but it ca also be, for example, a distinctive bottle (like Coca-Cola's iconic bottle), which is not an invention.