regular visitors will know that i’ve got a thing for e.mail. i suppose that some will consider it trivially obvious, but i believe that e.mail is the killer app. it’s the communication, stupid. so it only seems natural that people would be taking a closer look at at new ways to improve on the venerable e.mail phenomenon

first dave playing around with rpc over smtp:

“In StarTrek: The Next Generation, the Enterprise got a new feature, they could separate the ship into two parts. This experiment is like that. XML-RPC is and always will be a creature of HTTP. But what about the payload format, could it be transported through other protocols? Of course it can. So today I boldly went where no one has gone before and started doing RPC across SMTP.”

and then there was ev making a plea for an alias manager to facilitate mail management. his posts of reader responses led to a thoughful piece on an interesting messaging application:

“The question is, how do you manage files, attatchments, and even keep note of whats going on in a thread. And how do you do it securely? How do you transform messaging into something which creates a sense of community. How do you let workgroups collaborate; how do you let workgroups happen dynamically? Version Control?”

in turn, this led to a description of the real-time internet, 2001, which looks at the intersection of e.mail, newsgroups, messaging and “community” sites like slashdot:

“I have put 2001 in the title because this is going to be the year for the beginning of a makeover for the Internet. The abstract goal: to eliminate those Reload and Receive buttons from your software, and to add features that will bring back the ?wow factor? to the Internet once again.”

and last, but not least, we have rael dornfest’s evolving screed – Email: A P2P Enabler?

“Not quite worthy of the term “pet project,” I do have an application swimming about in my mind and ~/src directory.

An RPC-over-SMTP proxy running on the local desktop or server facilitating communication between local P2P / Web Service apps and the outside world. The proxy brokers interactions, tracking, routing, storing, and forwarding the asynchronous requests and responses, cacheing when useful and appropriate to do so. Obviously the proxy should not be limited to RPC-over-SMTP, allowing for synchronous communication over HTTP whenever possible.

Dave’s absolutely correct in referring to these shenanigans as “messaging.” . After all, isn’t an email client set to send immediately and retrieve every 1 minute just low-tech IM?

Almost Instant Messaging? MailStorm?”

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