Having just returned from the PLASA show in London, we are left wondering where technology is headed. What is the next great thing to come along and turn our industry on its ear? Can there be any more video and projection products to revolutionize an already overloaded visual experience? More LEDs used in new ways? Will someone find a way to control all production-related elements?

Many designers we queried at PLASA seemed skeptical about the lack of innovative technology at the show, but what does that really mean? Are we somehow jaded and, like our audiences and clients, expect too much of a wow factor every time we see new products?

Exactly how far can we go anyway? Maybe we don't even have to go to see shows or go to trade shows at all anymore. It can all be a virtual experience, not unlike the “virtual dinner party” that was posited among a who's-who of industry pros at one dinner in London (picture a bunch of video monitors around a dining room table). But that's silly, right? Well, let's just see what happens at ETS-LDI in November.

Anyway, on the LED front (because there is always LED news), recent rulings regarding the suits between Color Kinetics and Super Vision seem to point to a victory for the former:

Color Kinetics was granted all of its motions for summary judgment against Super Vision International, Inc…the Court determined that there was no genuine dispute of material fact and that Color Kinetics was entitled to judgment as a matter of law against Super Vision on Super Vision's claims of invalidity of Color Kinetics' patents and that the patents are infringed by Super Vision. The Court also found that Color Kinetics was not guilty of inequitable conduct regarding its actions with the United States Patent and Trademark Office…no trial will be held on these issues.

In addition, the courts dismissed the lawsuit against Color Kinetics alleging infringement of the “High End Patent,” stating that Super Vision is not the owner of the patent and therefore has no right to enforce it. These rulings pose interesting questions as to the future of LED development in the US. Will this foster future growth or discourage overseas companies to bring product to the US market? Are the battles really over? Does the end user care? Discuss, and get back to me.

Until next month, please license responsibly.