I want to offer an example of my configuration and why linking to
messages right now isn't ideal for me yet. I hope this helps to
identify and work on the related issues going forward.
Basically, we need to integrate the email browser with a url browser.
Logically approaching this, a mail browser is just a specialized
browser that handles one type of content. A url browser handles many
types of content like http, ftp and others. Why is it we need a special
tool for email?
* Eugene Kim <email@example.com> [001126 16:01]:
> Third, link to messages rather than quote them. This is one that Doug is
> constantly promoting, and one that is nontrivial to do with the tools we
> have at our disposal. It's one of those areas that immediately arises as
> a necessary tool feature. Not surprisingly, the only two people who seem
> to practice this -- Doug and Rod -- are people who have tools that support
> this feature by providing granular addressability and some linking
You know, I don't know where to link to instead of quoting this...
I put the link to your previous message above, but I can't like to a
particular paragraph. Should we use the egroups links as a conconical
source? I wish I could sort it by author like I can in my email client.
Do we need one canonical source? If the canonical source moves, will I
Maybe we could write our own commentary and post it to our own web sites
like Rod does? There is certainly the issue of software, but also of
the service/implementation not going anywhere. The need for reliability
and being able to read email is high. Email is the Internet's killer
app, which an average volume of 500 times that of web traffic. I found
that number very interesting from a previous link someone posted. I
don't know what the best answer is.
If we all had websites linking to and fro -without- new tools would it
be easier or more difficult to follow the conversation compared to
quoting in messages?
Without using a mailer that already has fine-grained links, I don't feel
it's acceptable. The web/url browser and email client need to be used
in a more seamless environment than is typically available.
An example from personal experience: I use the email client mutt
running on a seperate machine, and a browser Netscape running locally.
I telnet to this seperate machine to read my mail. Due to the way the IS
configuration has changed, this is the best way to do it. Going back
and forth between url browser (http, ftp, whatever) can be a real pain.
I didn't have a way to automate mutt telling netscape (in my case lynx
or w3m) to start a browser from within an email. Also any bookmarks set
in lynx are lost when I go back to netscape. Next, when I am done
browsing and without fine-grained links, it's difficult to take the
content from there and save this to an email I want to write since I
quit from one program to enter another.
Should I change my tools and habits to evolve? Yes. What do I change
Well, I found a tool called urlview for mutt. I just now took the time
to download, compile, install and test it. It's still clunky, but it
works better than no connection between mutt and a browser at all. It
allows URLs within mutt viewed email messages to launch a web browser.
<story> of the install
Unfortunately, this took some persistence. I tried the URL
provided in Mutt's help file, ftp://ftp.cs.hmc.edu/pub/me/, but the DNS
didn't resolve, so the site doesn't seem to exist. I checked mutt.org's
site, bingo, ftp://ftp.mutt.org/pub/mutt/contrib/ contains
urlview-0.9.tar.gz. After downloading and unpacking, there is even an
install script specifically for SuSE. I was pleasantly surprised.
Compiling it for both the machine I read email on and my own machine
(since they both use different versions of some libraries), installing
it, testing it out, seems to work ok.
Now, would I have cared much if I were a normal user that didn't want to
install & configure files and binaries? I doubt it. I didn't want to
take the time just now even if I know how to do it, but I am glad I did.
It makes for a decent story of what and how long it takes to modify
tools to collaborate better.
> Fourth, change the subject lines of e-mail to reflect the content of the
> message, not the title of the thread. Lack of foresight has rendered the
> subject header irrelevant. Most subject lines tell me nothing except the
> subject of the first message in the thread and the fact that a message is
> part of a thread. This latter feature is mostly unnecessary today, as
> decent mail clients will use the In-Reply-To header.
I have found it difficult to follow some threads on mail lists
because a few people's clients don't use In-Reply-To, causing choppy
threads. My solution is to revert back to subject, author and/or date
sorting. One of the four usually gets me what I want. Perhaps if I had
the time and I felt it important enough I would edit every email that
caused me this problem and add in the In-Reply-To header myself.
In the past while (two months or so) I have had trouble keeping up with
the latest on OHS lists. Since I have many unread messages, usually I
just use a command that gives me any unread messages within the mail
list. This doesn't do me much good if I haven't kept up. This is an
issue that might be solved with tagging or a command to show just new
messages to the list vs. previously unseen/unread messages.
I also have some mail lists that always have the same few messages on
the bottom. They are always there because the date fields in them are
not correct. I guess I should just edit them in the files and put in an
extra X-header if I want to save the original data as a comment.
My impression is that while all of these things are possible, the
tradeoff between time and the difficulties often weighs on the side of
not doing it because support levels and standard expectations are low.
> These are just a few suggestions off the top of my head. I would
> definitely like to see those interested in practicing good KM attempt to
> incorporate some of these suggestions. I'd also love to see comments on
> the above as well as new suggestions for practicing KM using existing
> [... signatures omitted ...]
I hope this is along the lines of what you were thinking of.
-- -- Grant Bowman firstname.lastname@example.org -- SuSE +1-510-628-3380 x5027 -- 580 Second Street, Suite 210 fax +1-510-628-3381 -- Oakland, CA 94607 http://www.suse.com
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