Electronic mail or 'e-mail' is a new form of communication.
Sending an e-mail is a little like sending a letter and it is
also like making a phone call.
You might consider e-mail a fast postal service but you will find that e-mail messages have a different flavour from ordinary letters. E-mail is often more casual than a letter. Messages can even be as short as a single word. But e-mail messages are more formal than telephone conversations.
Computer networks allow computer users to communicate with one another. Using today's technology, you can communicate with other computer users here at Sydney University, as well as with other computer users at most colleges, universities, businesses, and major organizations around the world.
An e-mail is a message created on a computer by one person and
then sent to one or more other people, either through the same
computer or over a computer network to another computer.
Usually e-mail messages are just text, but they also have attachments that can contain any sort of file at all. The Internet connects countries all around the world. On the Internet you can send a message to London or New York in a few seconds. There are thirty or forty million users with e-mail connections to the Internet.
One of the advantages of the Internet being a 'network of networks', is that from the Internet, you can send messages to people on CompuServe, MCImail and other mail networks.
Electronic mail works in the same way as ordinary mail. The difference is that it passes down electronic roads rather than on asphalt ones. As well the postmen and postmasters are all computers.
This course provides instruction on using Netscape E-mail to exchange electronic mail messages using a graphic interface . Other Emailers like MINUET, EUDORA, WIN95 Exhange are much similar and have all menu-driven and user friendly graphic interfaces .
Note that both Netscape E-mail (EMAIL) as well as EUDORA, MINUET or others provide access to the same electronic mail messages, and can thus be used interchangeably. You should use the one which you find most comfortable. Note that although they can be used interchangeably, not all options are available in both interfaces.
This concludes this lesson of EMAIL . Please return to the EMAIL Index and continue with the next lesson.
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Revised: Friday, 17 July 1998