[mailhist-discuss] FW: SIGCIS in Boston Magazine profile of "email inventor"

Tom Van Vleck thvv at multicians.org
Sun Jun 3 14:21:18 PDT 2012


On Jun 3, 2012, at 8:31 AM, Dave Crocker wrote:
> This reminds that we should settle on a working definition of email.
> 
> There was some background discussion for Ton's article intended to be 
> published  in the Post, and I'll let him re-post it here.
> 
> I'll offer my own:
> 
>     An electronic message (email) is a collection of data, packaged to 
> specify one or more authors and specifying one or more recipients.
> 
> I think the concept of authors and recipients is primary.  Otherwise, 
> it's a document.  I don't think the nature of the content matters nor 
> that any other meta-data like Subject are essential.  (I've previously 
> done some design that mapped between 'email' and 'document' and found it 
> useful for both.  This derived from efforts in collaboration space.)

In the old days we used to emphasize that mail was stored for later 
reading, as opposed to immediate terminal-to-terminal messages.
You could only message users who were online at the same time you were,
while a recipient could read mail later.

regards, tom



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