From miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx
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Date: Fri, 16 Apr 1999 19:47:48 -0500
Message-Id: <199904170047.TAA01703@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
From: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
To: gnome-list@gnome.org, gnome-announce-list@gnome.org,
        gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
Subject: Writing a GNOME mail client.
X-Home: is where the cat is



Hello guys,

   So, I was watching the grass grow the other day, and it ocurred to
me that the main medium of communications for the free software
community is mail.  Is it our most valuable communication resource.
Still I have not seen any mail program which is truely powerful,
extensible and it is designed to address the needs of our community. 

   The mail needs of people these days are rather different from those
some years ago: keeping up with high-volume mailing lists; keeping up
with important people; being able to keep track of conversations;
being able to easily archive messages based on various criteria; being
able to automatically split mail in folders; being able to decode mime
messages and render them nicely; being able to link the addressbook
with corporate address book services; schedule appointments. 

   So we need to provide this powerful tool.  Now, given that the core
of Gnumeric took only two months to develop and it was a rather solid
and good piece of code, I am confident that we can tackle this project
as well and do things right. 

   Now, what do we need to make this a reality?  Well, step number one
is to make this project fun and reusing all of the nice code and
infrastructure that we have developed over the past months.  

   Given that we are going to redo the Mail application for GNOME, I
have a number of ideas on how to do this.  So this is sort of a call
for volunteers that want to start working on such a beast.

   We need various modules in this mail program.  Each module should
be implemented as a CORBA object, exclusively because it allows us to
upgrade different components and choose different implementations over
time, without having to update the whole system.

   Contextual operations are very useful, so we should use Button-3
for context operations as much as possible.

* Mail storage 

   This will handle the handling of the mail input backend, supporting
   various existing setups: imap, pop, spool mail, Mailbox, MH. We can
   steal the design for the interface from GNUS.

   The mail storage should provide the mail splitting: applying all
   the rules defined for separating the mail into different folders. 

   See [1] for more information. 
      
* Summary display

   Summary display should allow people to list the messages in a
   folder.  We should implement what most people expect from the
   folder summary display, but on top of that we need that right
   clicking on a message presents useful options about the message: 

	a. Increase the score for this author/thread.

	b. Use this message as a "pattern" for automatically
  	   creating a new folder.

	   So that users do not end up editing manually their
           .procmail file, nor using a GUI to manually wonder
  	   which header needs to be used for splitting.

	   We can get splitting right most of the time, so by
           default we should be ablt to do a pretty good job.

	c. Allow the user to auto-archive any conversation with the
	   person selected or to auto-archive a thread (ie, based on
           Subject). 

   It should be possible from a message to see what the guy is
   replying to with a single click.

* Message Display

   This should be clearly a full fledged display engine for all of the
   new stuff we get on the net these days.  Integration with Bonobo for
   displaying message contents would be excellent.

   We can use Mozilla to render the display in the future, so a simple
   renderer for now would do the job. 
   
* Tool integration

   I suggest that the Message Display engine be decoupled by a clean
   CORBA interface from the Summary engine and from the folder
   engine.  

   We should integrate not only this, but it should integrate
   seemlessly with the calendar and the addressbook (the addressbook
   needs to be redesigned, because currently it is: not powerful and
   not very nice).

   The actual tools can be embedded with Bonobo (we can bootstrap with
   this feature turned off, but eventually it will be like this), so
   it will look like a big unified interface to the end user.

* Why not improve an existing mailer program

   There is too much baggage in existing mail applications that we do
   not want to carry into the future.  Reusing parts of existing GPL
   applications and mail applications should be fine, but I do not
   think there is much to be rescued.

   I would love to be proved wrong on this topic.  But the experience
   of gnumeric has left a very good taste in my mouth: it is possible
   to do so and it is possible to do this in a very clean fashion. 

* Developing this mail client

   We need to split the work between hackers.  Each one choosing a
   very specific task, so that we can paralellize as much as
   possible.  

   Cordination will take place on the gnome-mailer-list@nuclecu.unam.mx, 
   to subscribe send mail to gnome-mailer-list-request@nuclecu.unam.mx
   and put "subscribe" as part of your message.


[1] Bertrand has been working in such a beast, perhaps we can reuse
   some of his code.  I am just a bit concerned that the
   implementation is in Objective-C, which means that people need an
   objective-c compiler on their system to compile it.

From fds@offm62.wuh.wustl.edu
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From: Federico David Sacerdoti <fds@offm62.wuh.wustl.edu>
To: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
cc: gnome-list <gnome-list@gnome.org>
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
In-Reply-To: <199904170047.TAA01703@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
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You are the MAN!!

What a good vision... A well integrated addressbook, calendar, and email
client could be the biggest selling point to GNOME. The PIM could be as
simple, useful, and integrated with the desktop as the one on the palm
pilot.

Just so I understand, what do you mean by this:

> 
>    It should be possible from a message to see what the guy is
>    replying to with a single click.

-FDS

From jg@pa.dec.com  Fri May 12 00:01:17 2000
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From: jg@pa.dec.com (Jim Gettys)
Message-Id: <9904180145.AA15758@pachyderm.pa.dec.com>
X-Mailer: Pachyderm (client pachyderm.pa-x.dec.com, user jg)
To: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
Cc: gnome-list@gnome.org, gnome-announce-list@gnome.org,
        gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
In-Reply-To: <199904170047.TAA01703@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
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A couple of other points about what an ideal mail system would do:

* everything is indexed.  What look like folders are just search
	queries.  Besides queries on the message and/or headers, the messages
	can have labels attached (all your inbox is is incoming mail with
	an inbox label attached) and labels can take part in search
	queries.
* it is web based; you can use it anywhere, anywhere, at least, that
	there is a web browser.

See: http://www.research.digital.com/SRC/pachyderm/ for details.  I use
the research prototype; it seems it is a casualty of the Compaq/Digital
merger, though it may be spun out as a start up company.

Having lived with this vision for 2 years, it is far and away the best
mail system I've ever used.  Once you've lived this way, you never want
to go back...
			- Jim Gettys

From mtorzill@earthlink.net
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Date: Sat, 17 Apr 1999 14:50:48 +0000
From: "Michele A. Torzilli" <mtorzill@earthlink.net>
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To: gnome-list@gnome.org
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
References: <199904170047.TAA01703@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
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Just wondering what this means for Balsa.  Balsa is, I believe, the
official GNOME mail client;  does this announcement mean the Balsa project
will be vigorously implimented, or are plans for an entirely new mail
client in the works.  And I do indeed agree that this area (perhaps along
with an integrated help system for GNOME apps) of  a mail client needs to
be developed.


Miguel de Icaza wrote:

> Hello guys,
>
>    So, I was watching the grass grow the other day, and it ocurred to
> me that the main medium of communications for the free software
> community is mail.  Is it our most valuable communication resource.
> Still I have not seen any mail program which is truely powerful,
> extensible and it is designed to address the needs of our community.
>
>    The mail needs of people these days are rather different from those
> some years ago: keeping up with high-volume mailing lists; keeping up
> with important people; being able to keep track of conversations;
> being able to easily archive messages based on various criteria; being
> able to automatically split mail in folders; being able to decode mime
> messages and render them nicely; being able to link the addressbook
> with corporate address book services; schedule appointments.
>
>    So we need to provide this powerful tool.  Now, given that the core
> of Gnumeric took only two months to develop and it was a rather solid
> and good piece of code, I am confident that we can tackle this project
> as well and do things right.
>
>    Now, what do we need to make this a reality?  Well, step number one
> is to make this project fun and reusing all of the nice code and
> infrastructure that we have developed over the past months.
>
>    Given that we are going to redo the Mail application for GNOME, I
> have a number of ideas on how to do this.  So this is sort of a call
> for volunteers that want to start working on such a beast.
>
>    We need various modules in this mail program.  Each module should
> be implemented as a CORBA object, exclusively because it allows us to
> upgrade different components and choose different implementations over
> time, without having to update the whole system.
>
>    Contextual operations are very useful, so we should use Button-3
> for context operations as much as possible.
>
> * Mail storage
>
>    This will handle the handling of the mail input backend, supporting
>    various existing setups: imap, pop, spool mail, Mailbox, MH. We can
>    steal the design for the interface from GNUS.
>
>    The mail storage should provide the mail splitting: applying all
>    the rules defined for separating the mail into different folders.
>
>    See [1] for more information.
>
> * Summary display
>
>    Summary display should allow people to list the messages in a
>    folder.  We should implement what most people expect from the
>    folder summary display, but on top of that we need that right
>    clicking on a message presents useful options about the message:
>
>         a. Increase the score for this author/thread.
>
>         b. Use this message as a "pattern" for automatically
>            creating a new folder.
>
>            So that users do not end up editing manually their
>            .procmail file, nor using a GUI to manually wonder
>            which header needs to be used for splitting.
>
>            We can get splitting right most of the time, so by
>            default we should be ablt to do a pretty good job.
>
>         c. Allow the user to auto-archive any conversation with the
>            person selected or to auto-archive a thread (ie, based on
>            Subject).
>
>    It should be possible from a message to see what the guy is
>    replying to with a single click.
>
> * Message Display
>
>    This should be clearly a full fledged display engine for all of the
>    new stuff we get on the net these days.  Integration with Bonobo for
>    displaying message contents would be excellent.
>
>    We can use Mozilla to render the display in the future, so a simple
>    renderer for now would do the job.
>
> * Tool integration
>
>    I suggest that the Message Display engine be decoupled by a clean
>    CORBA interface from the Summary engine and from the folder
>    engine.
>
>    We should integrate not only this, but it should integrate
>    seemlessly with the calendar and the addressbook (the addressbook
>    needs to be redesigned, because currently it is: not powerful and
>    not very nice).
>
>    The actual tools can be embedded with Bonobo (we can bootstrap with
>    this feature turned off, but eventually it will be like this), so
>    it will look like a big unified interface to the end user.
>
> * Why not improve an existing mailer program
>
>    There is too much baggage in existing mail applications that we do
>    not want to carry into the future.  Reusing parts of existing GPL
>    applications and mail applications should be fine, but I do not
>    think there is much to be rescued.
>
>    I would love to be proved wrong on this topic.  But the experience
>    of gnumeric has left a very good taste in my mouth: it is possible
>    to do so and it is possible to do this in a very clean fashion.
>
> * Developing this mail client
>
>    We need to split the work between hackers.  Each one choosing a
>    very specific task, so that we can paralellize as much as
>    possible.
>
>    Cordination will take place on the gnome-mailer-list@nuclecu.unam.mx,
>    to subscribe send mail to gnome-mailer-list-request@nuclecu.unam.mx
>    and put "subscribe" as part of your message.
>
> [1] Bertrand has been working in such a beast, perhaps we can reuse
>    some of his code.  I am just a bit concerned that the
>    implementation is in Objective-C, which means that people need an
>    objective-c compiler on their system to compile it.
>
> --
>         FAQ: Frequently-Asked Questions at http://www.gnome.org/gnomefaq
>          To unsubscribe: mail gnome-announce-list-request@gnome.org with
>                        "unsubscribe" as the Subject.

--
Michele A. Torzilli
mtorzill@earthlink.net

The first step to knowledge
is to know we are ignorant.
         Socrates (470-399 B.C.)

From miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx
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Date: Sun, 18 Apr 1999 02:04:30 -0500
Message-Id: <199904180704.CAA24988@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
From: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
To: jg@pa.dec.com
CC: gnome-list@gnome.org,
        gnome-mailer-list@nuclecu.unam.mx.gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
In-reply-to: <9904180145.AA15758@pachyderm.pa.dec.com> (jg@pa.dec.com)
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
X-Windows: There's got to be a better way.
References:  <9904180145.AA15758@pachyderm.pa.dec.com>


I read Jamie Zawinsky's interwingle article, and his idea is extremely
similar to what Jim suggested:

> * everything is indexed.  What look like folders are just search
> 	  queries.  Besides queries on the message and/or headers, the messages
> 	  can have labels attached (all your inbox is is incoming mail with
> 	  an inbox label attached) and labels can take part in search
> 	  queries.

So the idea would be: every message received (and stored by any means)
and every message sent should be indexed by their message-id and
should be possible to access from a number of different fields:
Subject, CC, Sender, Originator, Reply-To history.

Thus, folders would indeed be implemented as the restul of a query.

I like GNUS's idea of keeping deleted mail on the system for a few
days before actually discarding it (only mail that you have deleted,
not your regular mail).

> * it is web based; you can use it anywhere, anywhere, at least, that
> 	  there is a web browser.

Yep.  Bernard and I agree on this.

> See: http://www.research.digital.com/SRC/pachyderm/ for details.  I use
> the research prototype; it seems it is a casualty of the Compaq/Digital
> merger, though it may be spun out as a start up company.

Can we get out hands on a demostration of it?

Miguel.

From bruce@cenderis.demon.co.uk
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To: gnome-list@gnome.org,
        gnome-mailer-list@nuclecu.unam.mx.gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
References: <9904180145.AA15758@pachyderm.pa.dec.com> 
<199904180704.CAA24988@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
From: Bruce Stephens <bruce@cenderis.demon.co.uk>
Date: 18 Apr 1999 12:32:17 +0100
In-Reply-To: Miguel de Icaza's message of "Sun, 18 Apr 1999 02:04:30 -0500"
Message-ID: <m33e1yw4e6.fsf@cenderis.demon.co.uk>
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Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx> writes:

> So the idea would be: every message received (and stored by any means)
> and every message sent should be indexed by their message-id and
> should be possible to access from a number of different fields:
> Subject, CC, Sender, Originator, Reply-To history.
> 
> Thus, folders would indeed be implemented as the restul of a query.
> 
> I like GNUS's idea of keeping deleted mail on the system for a few
> days before actually discarding it (only mail that you have deleted,
> not your regular mail).

(GNUS and Gnus are quite different---you probably mean Gnus here,
since GNUS is obsolete.)

I've been using Gnus for a year or so as my mailer and newsreader
(previously I used it only for reading news), and it's got lots of
nice features like that.  

It has topics, so I can group folders hierarchically.  folders (and
topics) can have parameters, so I can change the expiry delay, and the
address (useful for mailing lists which set headers which I usually
want to override).  (These parameters are applied hierarchically, so I
can set general values on the outermost topic and override them for
specific contained folders or folders.)

These are features which wouldn't work too well unless you keep a
pretty direct idea of which folder each bit of mail is in, I suspect.

Gnus provides "virtual groups", which are views on sets of existing
groups.  Perhaps that's the right thing to do: have the mailer keep
"real" folders, and let people apply expiry and things to them, but
also allow database-type access for convenient reading?

The MIME handling in the latest version (Pterodactyl Gnus) has some
nice features.  The ability to see the structure laid out like a
thread (using the digest-splitting command) is nice.  Some of the
interface is limited because it has to fit into Emacs/XEmacs, of
course---I'd guess some of it could be much improved with a
custom-written display.

Overall, Gnus rocks.  There's clearly a place for a smaller MUA, but I
think it would be good for people trying to design one to play with
Gnus for a bit, to get an idea of some of its nice features.

From miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx
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Date: Sun, 18 Apr 1999 16:07:25 -0500
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From: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
To: bruce@cenderis.demon.co.uk
CC: gnome-list@gnome.org, gnome-mailer-list@nuclecu.unam.mx,
        gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
In-reply-to: <m33e1yw4e6.fsf@cenderis.demon.co.uk> (message from Bruce
	Stephens on 18 Apr 1999 12:32:17 +0100)
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
X-Info: When in doubt, blame the network
References: <9904180145.AA15758@pachyderm.pa.dec.com> 
<199904180704.CAA24988@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx> 
<m33e1yw4e6.fsf@cenderis.demon.co.uk>


> I've been using Gnus for a year or so as my mailer and newsreader
> (previously I used it only for reading news), and it's got lots of
> nice features like that.  

Yeah, I am a Gnus user myself.  The problem is that it is too slow to
handle my regular mail plus all of my mailing lists.  So I read the
mailing lists with Gnus and my regular mail with Emacs RMAIL.

It is also not very simple to configure, excellent for an Emacs user
(like me), but not for the general public and definetly a context-menu
is easier to remember than a load of keystroke combination.

So, yes, I am inspired by Gnus to create a great mailer, but I think
we can do better usability-wise.

Miguel.

From miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx
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	by metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx (8.8.7/8.8.7) id SAA08578;
	Mon, 19 Apr 1999 18:37:21 -0500
Date: Mon, 19 Apr 1999 18:37:21 -0500
Message-Id: <199904192337.SAA08578@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx>
From: Miguel de Icaza <miguel@nuclecu.unam.mx>
To: shaver@mozilla.org
CC: flight@mathi.uni-heidelberg.de, gnome-list@gnome.org,
        gnome-hackers@nuclecu.unam.mx
In-reply-to: <371B8B61.40907F33@mozilla.org> (message from Mike Shaver on Mon,
	19 Apr 1999 16:00:33 -0400)
Subject: Re: Writing a GNOME mail client.
X-Unix: is friendly, it is just selective about who its friends are.
References: <199904170047.TAA01703@metropolis.nuclecu.unam.mx> 
<19990419141847.A29120@hooloovoo.mathi.uni-heidelberg.de> 
<371B8B61.40907F33@mozilla.org>


> Or, you could hack it now and make sure that all your cool desires
> showed up in the shipping 5.0 product, but it's all up to you.

Yeah, my main problem is that I lack the computing resources to do any
significant work on Mozilla.

Until Mozilla is split into pieces it is hard for
64meg-ram/pentium200mmx users to hack on that.

miguel.

			  SCO's Case Against IBM

November 12, 2003 - Jed Boal from Eyewitness News KSL 5 TV provides an
overview on SCO's case against IBM. Darl McBride, SCO's president and CEO,
talks about the lawsuit's impact and attacks. Jason Holt, student and 
Linux user, talks about the benefits of code availability and the merits 
of the SCO vs IBM lawsuit. See SCO vs IBM.

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