More Thoughts on GMail

Mail: I’ve been playing around with GMail a bit more recently. They’ve fixed the issues they had with Firefox and keyboard control, and it is nice.

Threading: since I plan to bother a few open-source MUA developers ;), I’ve written up a thorough analysis of their ‘conversation’ model, with its ‘collapsable history’, archive-not-delete approach, etc. Take a look, if you’re curious.

HTML: one feature that no-one’s commented on, is that GMail does not create HTML mail — all mail composed through their composer is sent as text/plain only.

This is very interesting, because it suits me just fine. HTML mail causes so many more problems than it solves, especially when full-featured web browser components are used to display it, IMO. I get to see the security exploits this enables, every day in my anti-spam work.

But it’s also very significant that nobody else has commented on it — nobody misses it!

Phantom Labels: another interesting thing I’ve noted: sometimes a mail will appear in your Inbox with a ‘spam’ label, even though you’ve never defined one. It’s not in the ‘Spam’ folder; it’s in your inbox.

Aaron has a good theory on what this is, and I think he’s right — he suggests it’s when ‘ the two emails are in a conversation (same subject); one is marked as spam, one isn’t. So the conversation (which is what appears in your inbox) gets two tags: Spam, and Inbox. So when viewing the list it looks like it gets the Spam tag.’

Also, while I’m here — details on LiveJournal’s distributed filesystem, MogileFS, which apparently ‘will be open source’. Link via acme.

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