Email by ewghwehws


CAS 133 – Basic Computer
      Skills/MS Office XP

            Russ Erdman
 You've probably never heard of Ray
  Tomlinson, but odds are that you can't live
  without his invention.

                          Ray Tomlinson, the
                          inventor of e-mail
 In late 1971, Tomlinson modified a computer file
  transfer protocol (FTP) to work with a simple mailbox

 He then sent the world's first e-mail message from
  one computer in his lab to another.

 The message caused the two-computer network to

 From that beginning sprang a new form of
  communication that elevated an obscure symbol into
  a pop culture icon: @.
        "The @ sign seemed
        to make sense,"
        Tomlinson says.

        "I used the @ sign to
        indicate that the user
        was 'at' some other
        host [computer]
        rather than being
 An engineer at Bolt Beranek and Newman
  (BBN) -- the company the U.S. government's
  Defense Advanced Research Projects
  Agency contracted in 1968 to develop
  DARPANET, which would later evolve into
  the Internet -- Tomlinson nearly suppressed
  his invention.
 One of his colleagues, Jerry Burchfiel, says
  Tomlinson cautioned him, "Don't tell anyone!
  This isn't what we're supposed to be working

He didn't imagine that in less than 30
 years, e-mail would go from being the
 preferred mode of communication of a
 few scientists around the U.S.A. to
 playing a key role in the daily lives of
 millions of people around the world,
 and even defining a generation
 Ray Tomlinson developed the first email
  application for the ARPANET, consisting of a
  program called SNDMSG for sending mail,
  and a program called READMAIL for reading
 These early email programs had simple
  functionality and were command line driven,
  but established the basic model still in use
 How it Works:
  Flo uses her email software to write an email. She
   includes the address and adds a Subject line.
  She connects to her ISP (Internet Service Provider)
   and tells her email software to send waiting
  The email software sends the message to the ISP's
   sending software (SMTP server). That software
   checks that Flo is authorized to send email through
   her ISP, looks at the address and sends the message
   on its way.
      Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, a protocol for sending e-
       mail messages between servers. Most e-mail systems
       that send mail over the Internet use SMTP to send
       messages from one server to another.
After bouncing around the world a bit the message is
 received by my ISP's receiving software (POP server).
    Post Office Protocol, a protocol used to retrieve e-mail from a
     mail server. Most e-mail applications (sometimes called an e-
     mail client) use the POP protocol
That software checks that I'm "on the books" and
 drops the message in my email letterbox on their
At some point I start up my email software, connect to
 my ISP and tell my software to look in my letterbox. My
 software has to tell my ISP's software who I am and
 what my password is before it can collect the mail. My
 software now downloads that message onto my
 computer and now I can disconnect from my ISP and
 sit back and read the message.
How does an
e-mail                                             Step 1
1 Create & send message    Step 2
2 Your software contacts                                      Step 5
  ISP mail server
3 Mail server determines
  best route                  mail
                                                            Step 4
4 Mail server transfers      server
  message to POP3 server
5 When e-mail software                  Internet
  checks for e-mail                     routers
  messages, message
  transfers from POP3                                                  POP3
                                                         mail          server
  server to recipient’s
                               Step 3                   server
 Snail mail used to be the only way to send a
  letter (FedEx and UPS gave them a run for their
  Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays
  these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed
  - Herodotus, describing the Persian courier system about 500
  B.C., inscribed on the General Post Office, New York City,
 Email is now the most widely used Internet
  application. For some people, it is their most
  frequent form of communication.

        THE END

To top