Thanks for the post. Let me confess, I didn't knew anything about "Ray Tomlinson" till i read your post. Thanks to Ray for inventing Email because it is one great communication tool which has revolutionized the way we communicate.
The other thing I would like to mention is about Google (as email, it plays a key role in our connected life). If we consider it came from Edward Kasner as expression conceived in 1920 to state big numbers, we could think our Internet technology and era has started about one century ago...
"Ray, thanks for the 200-plus emails I get each day -- though I am not sure if I love you or hate you for this gift."
Interesting post, Al Maag. I am not sure if I agree with the last line. I don't think any technology alone can be blamed for it's harmful effects. It's the usage of the technology that makes people either love it or hate it. I can relate to your feelings about handling tons of spam and junk emails every day, however, this cannot undermine the importance and usefulness of emails in our lives.
Thanks to Ray Tomlinson for foreseeing the future 40 years back. As I remember , back in early nighties it was the free email accounts provided by Hotmail and Yahoo that truly made this a medium for mass communication. Here in India we had very slow internet speeds then with those 56K dialup modems. The free email accounts came with 1MB of storage space then and the attachments of even 100k size would take sometimes hours to download. Todays broad band, fast processors and unlimited stoarge space on email accounts has created a very versatile medium for official as well as personal communications today , so much so that our day does not start and or end without those emails.
I remember the time when as the IT head of my company we installed our first email server. We had a lot of difficulty in explaining our staff and customers how the @ sign in the email address had to be typed as @ and not as "at" especially when giving somebody's email address on phone.
It is hard to believe that email has been around for forty years. I have to admit that I never knew Ray Tomlinson invented email until I read your article. It is amazing to see the progression of email through all the years. Now our inboxes are full of junk mail instead of our mailboxes. I'm curious to see how the next 40 years change the email system.
@jbond - I was thinking the same thing as I read this post--about the next 40 years of change. However, I believe its already begun--its just that those of us entrenched in email usage daily have yet to see it. But I'm catching on quickly...
I recently saw Socialnomics author, Erik Qualman's updated "Social Media Revolution" video on YouTube and a couple of things caught my eye:
1. Generation Y and Z consider email passe
2. Many universities have stopped distributing email addresses to students
These weren't the most powerful insights in the video, but are relevant here. So when you think of the next 40 years and what that means for email, I'm afraid it means the end for it as a viable medium. How can email compete with such fast-moving entities as Texting, Twitter, etc.? Even I find little time to check my personal email. I get my news and my greetings and have my conversations with tools that provide fast, if not immediate feedback.
I may be the anomaly for folks my age, but I am the norm for the coming generation. But that's personal email. What about businesses?
My real question is, could business communication survive without email?
Awsome! Did not realise Ray Tomlinson invented email.
This is a good achievement. E-mail has enhanced communication in many respects both privately and publicly. It has equally contributed to the reduction of paper usage (it's quicker to email than write a letter), reduce the cost of posting letters and most importantly accelerate and connect people, businesses all over the world.
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