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Re: url bar

From: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 11:22:12 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <200104221022.f3MAMCR13943@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> 
> it is so weird that whilst when I sent the last email, the attachment shows
> the cat, yet when  recieved the copy it didn't, and if I try toopen the

That's because you are confusing proprietory features of your email program
with the actual guaranteed behaviour of internet email (a common problem 
with HTML, of course).

You are using Outlook, and in a closed Outlook environment, rich text
markup will be preserved and attachments will show up in context and
with the icon that you saw when you composed the message (you can use
the Windows packager application to add arbitrary icons to attachments
when you are operating in a pure Windows/Outlook environment).

In an open environment you can only really rely on plain text followed
by attachments without any associated icons.  When such mail arrives
at its destination, a GUI program may re-instate an icon based on the
filename extension (or better, the MIME Content Type of the attachment).

In order to tunnel across the internet to other closed Outlook domains,
various versions of Outlook/Exchange can append either a pseudo-HTML
version or a proprietory (MS-TNEF) version as an alternative version of
the message.  To some extent the pseudo-HTML version will work with 
non-Microsoft GUI email programs, but it is generally HTML abused for
its presentational side effects, so assumes similar presentational 
behaviour.  The fully proprietory version is needed to completely 
reproduce the local appearance of the message.

Both the HTML and fully proprietory versions significantly increase the
size of the message.  The HTML typically triples it and the MS-TNEF is
even worse.  Most people on mailing list dislike this because it wastes
space in folders, consumes internet bandwidth, and, if they don't have
a GUI browser, may well expose them to the raw form of the alternative
message.

One of the great problems with "user friendliness" in communications
applications is that it exposes a false view of the world.  Authoring
for only Outlook compatibility is quite common because many people
fail to realise that Outlook is not the same as email; this is beneficial
to Microsoft, as it creates a lock in effect.

Using MS-TNEF basically means that you have accepted a closed standards,
Microsoft monopoly view of the world.
Received on Sunday, 22 April 2001 06:23:28 GMT

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