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Re: Mail reader

"Joey Hess" <joey@kitenet.net> writes:
> Gary Hennigan wrote:
> > I could ask the same question only turned around -- Why use 4 or 5
> > utilities, with each being a possible point of failure in what these
> > days has become an important communication medium to most folks, when
> > one will suffice?
> Because it allows me to pick the best tool for each job, and continually
> refine those choices. procmail is probably no longer the best tool for
> sorting mail, so I will probably stop using it soon. I used to think
> that jed was the best tool for composing mail. One of these days I will
> probably ditch mutt. It's nice to be able to swap out one tool and not
> have to throw away all the others too.
> As to the FUD about point of failure, I have much more trust in a tool
> that was designed for its job than a mail reader which just has mail
> filtering or imap support or what have you bolted onto the side. Simple
> programs have simpler bugs.
> > Gnus doesn't edit my mail, emacs does.  Like I said, I use procmail to
> > download my mail to 1 of 3 mail boxes then I use gnus to sort those
> > into appropriate folders. Also, I don't let gnus act as a MTA (can it
> > even do that?). On my system it just connects to port 25 on localhost
> > and that loads it off to exim on this box. Could Emacs+gnus do all
> > that? Maybe, but that's the great thing about Emacs, it probably could
> > do almost everything you want, but you don't have to use it in that
> > mode.
> Oh, so you _do_ use a collection of tools, each of which is a "possible
> point of failure". I see.

You might want to learn a bit about the art of debate or at least read
more carefully. I didn't say *I* used an "all in one tool" because of
the possibility of failure at multiple points. It was simply an
argument in favor of doing so, and a valid one at that, despite your
use of term "FUD". 

It's also generally easier to set up an "all in one" tool, if the tool
is done correctly, because it'll have a consistent interface. How many
configuration files do you have to tweak to get it all working? I have
my procmail rules file, my exim configuration, my emacs init file and
my gnus init file. That's 4. If I were using moz mail or evolution I
could probably get away with far fewer.

But, personally, I like using small tools myself, except for an
editor/development environment. The point was that there are valid
reasons for both choices, small individual tools as well as "all in
one" solutions.

The alternate point was to dispute your misconception that gnus was an
"all in one" solution. It certainly can be, as can mutt from what I've
read, but it doesn't have to be.

> > Anyway, I'm glad you're happy. I'm happy too and I've been using Emacs
> > + Gnus for an awful long time (since around 1988 I think!) and it's
> > tuned to meet my needs exactly.
> I've been evolving my current toolset since 1994 :-P

Well, you'll get the hang of it eventually. Stick with it! :)


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