Nokia Offers New Email Accounts Via the Mobile Phone

Niti has an intriguing post including this quote describing service for the Nokia 1202:

the new devices will allow users to set up an e-mail account on Nokia’s Ovi Web portal without ever going near a PC. That’s an important distinction for the millions of mobile-phone users who live in regions without reliable electricity, much less computers and Internet connections. “It gives those millions of users their first identity on the Internet,” says Alex Lambeek, Nokia vice-president in charge of handsets aimed at low-income users.

A brilliant move, IMHO, and makes me wonder about which other bits of the PC-oriented Internet could be mobilized.

But Niti goes on to explore how an email address changes our identity or online presence differently.

How to Manage Your Incoming Email

I haven’t had a chance to check out Mark Hurst’s newish book, Bit Literacy, but I was just listening to a talk he did for Ted a couple years ago on how to manage your incoming email, and I’m going to dive in and try it. Here’s the essential steps:

The overarching goal is to keep your inbox empty because inboxes are not good task lists. To get it empty in the first place, consider triage.

There’s four steps to follow:

  1. Go to the most important emails first, i.e. personal emails from family and friends. Get them out of the inbox by replying, forwarding, printing, filing, whatever.
  2. Go to the least important emails next — FYIs, Newsletters, etc. Read them now or delete them. Do not save them.
  3. Go to action items that require two minutes or less. Do each action item right now and delete or file the message.
  4. What’s left is action items that take longer than two minutes. Move these onto a proper to do list then file or delete.

Pushing Weblogs

Sometimes pushing, via email, still wins over pulling via websites. There’s a handful of sites I want to monitor but lack the time or attention to surf, even as an RSS feed. Lately I’ve been using iMorph’s Infominder service. They basically check a site for changes and send you an update. Nice touches are thrown in, like a digest mode and the ability to check RSS feeds. The first ten feeds are free.

Spam Proofing

Dan Benjamin’s Win the SPAM Arms Race offers a clever way to create a clickable mailto: link on your web pages while greatly reducing the ability of spam harvesters to find it. Some people are so nice.

I’m combining that with some email filters, started with Heather’s list plus a few additions that are working well. So far I’m filtering on:
1618
opt out
ADV
[ a blank subject line ]
$$
!!
mortgage
loan
stock
click here
Section 301
FREE

I still find myself looking through the spam I’ve caught, like sorting through the odd creatures entrapped in the net before throwing them back.

Best Spam Subject Line So Far

‘I never said I want to be alone‘, on spam selling a stock. I still don’t understand why they think we’ll be in a buying mood after they trick us into looking at their unsolicited marketing message.

Looking for an IMAP Account

So I’m planning on moving away from Yahoo mail. It’s been wonderful to go many years without having to change my personal email address, but:

  • the reliability has been spotty lately
  • they started charging, which is fair, but it makes me wonder what other services are out there
  • the email hack, ugh
  • it’s time to ditch POP and move up to IMAP. I span multiple computers and multiple places, and can’t deal with having messages trapped on a particular hard drive anymore

So I registered a shiny new vanity domain name. I just want to point it at an IMAP account. So I’m looking for a service. I started trying mac.com, which is mostly good except for


  • webmail doesn’t seem to work on non-Macs
  • they started charging $8.33/month, again this is fair but makes me want to evaluate other services
  • i can have my mail forwarded to mac.com, and set my vanity domain as the return address, but mac.com still shows up in the “To:” field, not ideal.

If you know of an inexpensive, reliable, personal IMAP provider let me know. I’ll post the results right [here].

Here is here: Christina mentioned both dreamhost and oddpost. Dreamhost seems like a great option if you also need hosting, but I’m all set with pair.com. Oddpost only works on IE/Win. I’m willing to switch out of Mozilla now and then, but Win only is a deal killer.

I ended up with myrealbox, a site set up by Novell to display the capabilities of their NetMail product. While that makes me feel a bit like a guinea pig, it seems OK, and the user base is pretty big. It’s free, there’s no ads, it does IMAP, and the web interface is pretty good, though not entirely Mozilla/Mac happy, but then that’s not too rare these days. If it collapses completely I can always bail and go back to mac.com without having to change my email address. It’s mine, all mine, I’m a greedy miser.

BlogSpam

Spotted! Well, not exactly the BlogSpam I referred to. But crazy random posts on the topic of air-conditioning and mold appeared on Molly’s blog here and here.

Is it someone’s idea of a joke? Do you wish you thought of it first?

Spam-Proof?

We have email spam and IM spam. Today I received a spam text message on my mobile phone (either Sprint sold my number or the spammers haven’t even bothered to harvest numbers, simply sending them out in numerical order because it’s so inexpensive). Oh joy. Next I predict – and I probably shouldn’t say this out loud – spam in the comments section of blogs. Essentially anything we use to communicate, unless it’s a private network, is vulnerable. We’ll have to start anticipating this and designing protection in at the beginning, but I wonder if that’s even possible.

MacOS X Email Client?

So I recently upgraded to MacOS X and for the most part I’m loving it. But I haven’t found an email client that sings. So far

  1. I hear the MacOS X Mail program is kinda lame
  2. I’ve used Eudora in the past, and I’m willing to again. The interface is embarrasingly bad at times, but I’ve been using it for so long it’s second nature.
  3. Mailsmith has all the speed and niceties you’d expect from the makers of BBEdit, but it’s optimized for keyboard shortcuts, having almost no buttons in the interface. Too clumsy for me.
  4. I’d be willing to check out Entourage (especially to try out Six Degrees), but apparently Microsoft only sells it with Office and I don’t use Office enough to justify upgrading.
  5. Anyone using Mulberry? It looks very strong technically but a little suspect in the interface department.
  6. Being quite satisfied with Mozilla, I’m seriously considering using its email. I like having the ability to email, surf, and do basic HTML markup all in one place.

Your opinion?

Update: Mr. Allen, and a couple others, say Entourage is solid. Of Powermail he says, ‘…fairly stripped down, good filtering capabilities, and nicer looking than Eudora.

Mr. Garrett writes in that Entourage does have some nifty features but that search is ‘appallingly slow‘ and instead he’s considering Mozilla, as is Michael. I save every email ever and tend to search my folders a lot, so this is making me want Entourage less.

Herr Garrett also mentions Zoe, which we agreed was intriguing but perhaps not ready for everyday use.

And, I just found the Apple directory of email clients.

So, I’m trying the Powermail demo to see if it’s worth $49 more than Mozilla.

Also, there’s SweetMail.