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(Electronic-MAIL) The transmission of text messages from sender to recipient. Email messages can also be formatted with graphics like a brochure or Web page, an enhancement that many users like, but that creates more spam and a security risk (see HTML email).

Users can send a mail message to a single recipient or to multiple users. In addition, JPEG photos as well as any other type of computer file may be attached to the message (see email attachment). Mail is sent to a simulated mailbox in the organization's mail server until it is downloaded to the "in" mailbox in the user's computer.

The Messaging System and the Client
An email system requires a messaging system, which is primarily a store and forward capability based on the Internet's Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP). A mail program (email client), such as Windows Mail, Mac Mail, Outlook and Eudora, provides the user interface for mailboxes and send and receive functions. Popular email services such as Gmail and Yahoo Mail are Web based, in which case the Web browser is used as the mail program (see email interfaces).

The Internet Changed It All
The Internet revolutionized email by turning countless incompatible islands into one global system. Initially serving its own users, in the mid-1990s, the Internet began to act as a mail gateway between the major online services such as CompuServe and America Online (AOL). It then became "the" messaging system for the planet. In the U.S., Internet mail is measured in the trillions of messages each year. See email vs. fax, messaging system, instant messaging, read receipt and self-destructing email.

Could They Have Imagined Spam?
When they sent this first message in 1971, could they have imagined the trillions of email messages that would follow in years to come? (Image courtesy of Dan Murphy,

The First Email on the Internet

In 1971, the first email message was typed into the Teletype terminal connected to the Digital Equipment PDP-10 toward the back of the room in the following picture. The message was transmitted via ARPAnet, the progenitor of the Internet, to the PDP-10 in front. Dan Murphy, a Digital engineer, took this photo in the Bolt, Beranek and Newman datacenter. See ARPAnet.

Could They Have Imagined Spam?
When they sent this first message in 1971, could they have imagined the trillions of email messages that would follow in years to come? (Image courtesy of Dan Murphy,
References in periodicals archive ?
But the e-mailer soon reveals that she is Dylan's mother, Nan, writing on behalf of her son who is now filming abroad.
E-MAILERS across Warwickshire are being warned to be on the look-out for so-called "phishing" scams.
Cocco said a huge number of e-mailers thanked her for the column -- the latest of several she has written about the sexism faced by Clinton.
And there are the texters who have now become e-mailers.
E-mailers accused him of not being a real journalist, though he has 30 years of experience as a reporter.
This is important because phishing and spoofing schemes, where fraudulent e-mailers send e-mails under the guise of a recognized brand in an attempt to dupe recipients into giving up personal information, use real domains (such as @hsbc.
That's when the big-time spam e-mailers send their work.
Second, the prospect of instantaneous communication creates an urgency that pressures e-mailers to think and write quickly, which can lead to carelessness.
The most perplexing new wrinkle in the e-mail world is that some of our e-mailers expect not only a personal reply to an initial query or comment, which I'm happy to provide, but an ongoing, personal back-and-forth discussion on issues of the day as well.
LAST week's assertion that Stilian Petrov needed to get his finger out and stop trying to sulk his way to a move hit the spot with a few e-mailers.
Among the biggest players online is America Online, and it recently made the controversial move of giving large e-mailers preferential treatment by paying a fee to bypass its spam filters through Goodmail Systems' CertifiedEmail service (www.