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Mail hell

Yesterday I managed to spend the whole day not checking email. Today, so far, I’ve spent a little over an hour and a half catching up on that backlog. If you emailed me between 6pm on Friday and 9am today, I’m sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner. If you didn’t, why not? Don’t you like me enough to email me? Hmm?
I’m currently working on a review of MailSmith from my favourite ever softwar company, Bare Bones. When Bare Bones’ main product, the uber text editor BBEdit, turned 10 years old, Bare Bones put out a limited edition CD with every commercial version it had ever made on it – “BBEdit – The Anthology”. And, to many people, BBEdit is bigger than The Beatles, if not quite bigger than God.
What’s nice about MailSmith is its integration with a product called SpamSieve, which is one of the nicest anti-spam applications on the Mac. SpamSieve uses the popular Bayesian filtering method to learn what’s a good email and what’s a bad one. In the short run, that means it’s pretty appalling, but as it learns it gets a lot better – a whole lot better. At the moment, it’s probably netting about 50% of the spam I get, which after 2000 messages received isn’t bad.
The other great thing about MailSmith is that it’s text only: HTML messages don’t display (you get an option to view in your Web browser instead), which means you’re immune from Web bugs and other little script nasties. You’re also immune from seeing a load of naked chick covered in jam, or whatever the spammers have decided you might be interested in.

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