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Wed, 04 Jan 2006

The college that I went to used to have a saying that getting an education was like "drinking from a firehose". That would make getting e-mail something like drinking from lake. I'm on a lot of mailing lists for various open source projects and beta testing lists and a whole bunch more.

All the e-mail is chewing up disk space on our local IMAP server, and is duplicated on my Powerbook's hard drive, because I have Mail.app set to keep messages so I can do stuff offline. This starts to add up to a lot of space fairly quickly. I've always wanted a way to break down my "old mail" by months, so that I could keep that local cache down to a reasonable size.

I've had a "someday" kind of task to write such a tool, but no more. I discovered archivemail, which will do exactly what I want (I'm using the --date option). It's written in Python in case I need to hack on it, and there's even a Debian package for it.

[22:45] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 2 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Mon, 12 Jul 2004
New spambot virus?
This weekend I've noticed a large spike in the number of messages being delayed by postgrey. Many of these messages are of the form FirstnameLastname@sauria.com, which is bogus e-mail address on my system. Moreover, these messages are being sent from machines all over the world. It sure looks like some new spambot virus is going around...
[00:18] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Fri, 05 Mar 2004
Spam I am
My OSAF co-worker Ducky Sherwood made her way to the MIT anti-spam conference in January. Here's her report on the event. Ducky has done a lot of thinking about e-mail, and written a book about her thoughts. I was going to blog this a while ago, but obviously I haven't attained "a mind like water" (see the previous post for the details). Mea culpa. Now you should all go and beg Ducky to start her own blog...
[21:39] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Tue, 07 Oct 2003
Ideas for e-mail
Rajesh Jain reports on Steven Johnson's for an inbox that is organized according to statistics about the senders of the messages. I could imagine doing this using VM (an Emacs Lisp program) as my mail reader, but I can't see doing this with Thunderbird (client of the day), Evolution (tried that), or Outlook (it might be possible via VBA). Stuff like this is the reason that programs like Chandler need to be platforms and not applications.

Duncan Mak reports on an improptu Pachyderm tutorial that Jim Gettys gave him. I took away three points from Duncan's take aways:

  1. Multiple user interfaces would be nice
  2. Mail needs query language type capabilities including limiting
  3. Tagging mail with user defined attributes is a must (8 colors or labels isn't enough)
[20:43] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Tue, 09 Sep 2003
Contempt of Consumer: It's a Real Crime
The Fast Company piece that I referred to last month is now available, and it's more relevant then ever.
[01:35] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Tue, 26 Aug 2003
Secure E-mail
It figures that I post about the new GnuPG, and the very next day someone comes out with a tutorial for using GnuPG with Enigmail, a plugin to either Mozilla Mail or Thunderbird. Just one more reason to get off Outlook.
[01:08] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Thu, 14 Aug 2003
Experimenting in groups: the quiet voices
Chuq is on a tear. Ben Hyde posted Chuq's article on quiet voices in groups to the ASF members list. To say that the ASF is a mailing list culture is like saying the Chinese like to eat rice. We have mailing lists for everything, and frequently the solution proposed to a problem is to create yet another mailing list. Chuq's idea for using multiple mailing lists as multiple rooms in a house during a cocktail party is intriguing. In the social software realm, we're in need of this kind of innovative thinking just as badly as we are in need of new and cool software.
[01:23] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Sun, 10 Aug 2003
Paul Graham: Filters that Fight Back
I hopped over to Paul Graham's site in (vain) hopes of seeing something about Arc. Instead I found his new article on antispam filters, Filters that Fight Back. Basically the idea is to turn spam messages into a Denial of Service attack against spammers by making spam filters pound any URL's embedded in messages determined to be spam. I love it. I wonder how long it will take for someone to write a Thunderbird extension to do this.
[00:35] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 2 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Fri, 09 May 2003
Jon Udell's article on SpamBayes is making me jealous. I just switched off of Outlook because it was taking outrageous amounts of time to talk to my IMAP server. I settled on Mozilla Mail in part because of the bayesian spam filtering. Mozilla's bayesian filtering still seems to be letting spam through. Unlike SpamBayes, I can't get any insight into the scoring of words. It could be that my spam corpus is too small -- mail has to get past spamassasin on the server before it hits Mozilla. Maybe I'll turn off spamassassin and see what happens (Ulp!)...

There are a few annoyances that I have with Mozilla mail:

  • There's no visual status of whether a message has been forwarded or replied to.
  • A signature is appended to every message - including replies.
[00:16] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 3 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Thu, 01 May 2003
Brad Templeton on spam
Brad Templeton's article on the history spam has appeared on Slashdot and a bunch of other places. His article on what to do about it hasn't been referenced a much as the article on the history. The network of throttling servers that he proposes has a lot of nice properties. It also has the property of not depending on pattern recognition of spam content. I'm running Spamassassin on my mail server and Mozilla 1.3 with bayesian filtering turned on on the client, and I'm still seeing spam -- partially because I don't feel confident enough in Mozilla's bayesian filter to have it move spam messages aside.
[12:07] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Wed, 23 Apr 2003
E-mail more important than telephone
A recent survey shows that 80% of people surveyed believe that e-mail is more business critical than the telephone. Nice to know I'm not the only on who thinks so. Actually, for me IM is also ahead of the telephone. I think that the only way that the telephone could catch back up was if it was a videophone.
[15:17] | [computers/internet/mail] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post

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Ted Leung FOAF Explorer

I work at the Open Source Applications Foundation (OSAF).
The opinions expressed here are entirely my own, not those of my employer.

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