Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Email Archives

I am an email junkie. I live, breathe, eat and drink email. I have been using it since January 1997 and the last 9 years have been an ever increasing reliance on it for doing my work, and keeping in touch with friends, colleagues and clients.

I opened my first email account on hotmail, through what was a shell account of VSNL. For those who do not know, and I suspect most do not know, a shell account was a stripped down, text based internet service that was very costly. The normal service cost Rs. 15,000 for 500 hours, Rs. 5,000 for 100 hours, but the shell cost 900 for 100 hours.

Since then, I ported my email account from hotmail (1997) to vsnl paid email (1999) to gmail (2005). In the process, I bought my first PC (1998) and then my second PC (2000). I always took great care to transport my complete email, my address book, bookmarks and documents with me. I took backups, both online and offline.

I have not been very successful with transporting my bookmarks, which got split between browsers (maxthon, IE, opera, firefox) and various PCs.

I have been fairly successful with my documents, with only some documents lost over the years.

However, I have been very successful (touchwood!) with my email. Since most email software are designed for quick and fairly painless import of email from one software to another I have been fairly succesful with this portion of the journey.

I have used Outlook (horrible), Outlook Express (passable), Incredimail (2-3 days, atrocious) and finally Eudora since 2001. Of course I have used webmail interfaces of hotmail, yahoo, rediffmail and gmail. Eudora is fantastic and I rate it 9/10. Gmail is very nice, with 9/10. There are somethings in Eudora that I desire in gmail (delete attachment, edit email before storage) and some in gmail that I desire in Eudora (conversations).

I deleted a lot and preserved some email over the years. Whatever I preserved, I preserved it carefully. Reading it is like delving into a treasure trove. Old friends, acquaintences, memories, meetings, clients, projects, promises all come flooding back whenever I chance to search through it.

Hierarchichal archiving makes it easy to find things. Searching is not difficult and therefore interesting! I currently have 15,266 emails in my eudora in 133 email boxes. That's a lot of email. The earliest saved email is from 18th June, 1998 and the last one was received 33 seconds ago. Carefully preserved archives of my life. If one were to read them, one would get a very accurate picture of me, my interests, my likes and dislikes and therefore, the real me.

Three cheers to email! Hip Hip Hurray!! Hip Hip Hurray!! Hip Hip Hurray!!

1 comment:

  1. hmmm...interesting, would love to go thru the interesting ones (esp the embarrassing n humorous ones)! seriously il b interested in goin thru some of ur mails...esp the first one that was sent thru the shell acc!!