RIM’s VP of Industrial Design, Todd Wood, has told Pocket-lint that the BlackBerry PlayBook’s design was heavily influenced by the Moleskine notebook - a favourite of Ernest Hemingway.

“Wouldn’t it be great if it was thinner than a paperback book, but roughly the same size,” Wood tells us, talking about the original brief for Research In Motion’s 7-inch tablet as they set out to design the device.

But it wasn’t just the Moleskine that helped shape the size and design of the PlayBook. Wood highlights that paperback books and DVD cases are also of a similar size suggesting that it’s “perfect” for most people from most walks of life.

Other influences, says wood, include the film 2001: Space Odyssey.

Turns out while the PlayBook isn’t as black or as tall as the black tablet from the Kubrick movie, Wood says that the film’s vision of a future with clean and simple devices are what RIM is hoping for.