It's my understanding that kernel modules could get around this legal requirement, because kernel modules are not derivatives of the kernel, and are therefore not subject to the GPL. As I'm sure I'm not the first person to think of this, there has to be a reason this doesn't work. Does anybody know why or why not?
Somebody above pointed out the fact that what he said could be grounds for a lawsuit under unfair competition laws. So Microsoft was left between a rock and a hard place. If they didn't say anything, Apple could try to take them to court over copying their specific look and feel ideas (the 1990's case covering this is also mentioned above), but if they did try to officially retract his statement, the Streisand affect comes into play.
They were in a damned-if-they-do-damned-if-they-don't situation, because let's face it: they did copy a lot of ideas from other operating systems. Perhaps they should try to come up with their own ideas instead of playing follow the leader/s (Apple and the KDE team) in UI design.
Gee, now if only somebody thought of a solution that worked for *removable media* like the parent asked in addition to the NFS part, we wouldn't have to read snarky replies on Slashdot that don't really answer the question completely.
Ah, I see your point, although my understanding is that X forwarding is faster than VNC and RDP. There are advantages and disadvantages for everything though, I suppose.
I used X forwarding over SSH from my school's computers to run Firefox to get access to websites behind the school firewall (the VPN software didn't work with my computer - they switched from the Cisco VPN, which had a nice plugin for NetworkManager, to Juniper, which needed a bunch of messing with and still didn't work on my standard Ubuntu desktop - yes). Without the networking functionality of X, I would have had to call up a friend and divulge my password to the school's computers (which would have voided my agreement to use the network to begin with) or drive the 20 minutes to school to use the computers for 5 minutes and then drive back home - roundtrip time: 45 minutes of my life, 40 of which I thankfully spent doing other (admittedly sometimes non-productive) things.
Do not underestimate the utility of networking functionality in today's software environment; Bill Gates wrote an email to his employees in the *90's* about the rise and usefulness of the internet, and when his employees did not share his vision, Google - a company that also recognized the potential of the internet and the browser - managed to become Gates' worst nightmare: a relevant and *widely successful* competitor to the entrenched monopoly that is Microsoft. To successfully compete against a monopoly is difficult, to surpass the monopoly makes the feat even more impressive (even though Google may turn into a bad monopoly in the future, much as Microsoft did).
I am not familiar with the architecture of X, but somebody smarter than I needs to sit down and think about the architecture of X, whether or not it can improve, and whether or not it needs to be rewritten from scratch. FOSS should not fall into the trap of rewriting everything as pointed out by somebody smarter than I (I think it was Jamie Zawinski, who has criticized the X project for quite awhile, perhaps not the best reference).
"Card readers? We don't need no stinking card readers." -- Peter da Silva (at the National Academy of Sciencies, 1965, in a particularly vivid fantasy)