The U.S. Supreme Court granted a writ of certiorari in Kimble et al. v. Marvel Enterprises, Inc., No. 13-720 on December 12, 2014, aka the Spiderman case. The plaintiffs are Tucson attorneys Steve Kimble and Bob Grabb; their involvement aside, however, the case offers a look inside the world of patent law.
Steve Kimble developed an add-on device for spraying Silly String, a la Spiderman. While he was obtaining a patent, he pitched his idea to Marvel. Its people passed, but said they would pay if they used the idea. Later, Marvel marketed what amounted to the same toy. Litigation ensued, and there was a settlement, which included cash and royalty payments. (Bob Grabb acquired an interest in