OS/2 eZine - http://www.os2ezine.com
July 16, 2004
Isaac Leung (P.Eng.) got a degree in Engineering Physics followed by a Master's in Electrical Engineering after which he promptly got a job as a product engineer at a company which makes high speed datacom chips. He is old enough to have cut his computer teeth on Commodore 64's and first played with OS/2 1.3 EE while at a summer job with IBM. The first PC he ever owned came with Windows 95, but he soon slapped on OS/2 Warp 3 and has been Warping ever since. He has agreed to work for Transmeta while he continues plotting to take over the world.
If you have a comment about the content of this article, please feel free to vent in the OS/2 e-Zine discussion forums.

There is also a Printer Friendly version of this page.

Previous Article
Next Article

Injoy Firewall

From The Editor

Free web-based e-mail has been around so long now (in Internet years), that it's hard to imagine a time without it. Of course, it's never really "free". You don't have to pay money because whoever is providing it perceives some benefit by providing the service to you, either by sending you advertisements or trying to track your interests or whatever.

What's the fuss?

The latest big name entrant from Google is GMail. They plan to provide a whopping 1GB of disk space (at a time when Yahoo! offered 10MB) for users. For free. That, of course, got everyone's attention (and to compete, Yahoo! and other's have increased their disk space allocation).

That's when the grumbling started. With 1GB, Google was never going to delete your e-mail, and it would be archived and searched if they wish. The privacy advocates took up arms, and that got Google even more press.

Okay, I don't like people reading my e-mail either, but come on folks! This is a free service! You don't get something for nothing. And it's not like Google has a monopoly on the free e-mail market. You don't like their policy? Go somewhere else! Nobody's forcing you to sign up for their service.

What's it like?

Regardless, I've very little to hide and I frankly, I'd be quite flattered if somebody found my little life worthy of their attention. (Still, don't say anything you might regret later on free e-mail)! Of course, I got myself a GMail account. Or two. (Wouldn't you know it, 3.14159265@gmail.com was taken...;-)

And you know, I don't know what the fuss is. It's just plain e-mail. It's a little bit annoying right now because you can not delete. Every e-mail you get will always be there. The interface is pretty standard. You "file" your e-mails by applying labels instead of moving it to folders. Other than the 1GB space, there really isn't anything to write home about. You get basic web-based e-mail, a contact list and that's it. Fact is, I think the Yahoo! mail is more feature-rich, if a little slower. Bottom line is, don't bother wasting your time searching for an invite or trying to buy something off e-Bay.

Alternative Choices

As usual, the one that gets the most noise is not always the best choice. Those of you wanting free e-mail, might want to take a look at Spymac, which was originally an Apple Macintosh rumor/news type site. However, it is open to all users now.

You get 1GB of free e-mail. Right now, no waiting for invites. There's also a calendar tool, much like Yahoo!'s mail. But wait, here's the kicker:

Not only do you get 1GB of free web-based e-mail. It is POP3 accessible! (IMAP is in the works). That beats Yahoo!, Hotmail, Google and just about everyone else. Yeah, that means you can use it with whatever OS/2 mailer you want. I've tried the e-mail a bit, and (so far) it does not tag on any cheesy lines or advertisements to your e-mail.

But wait, there's more (I'm not kidding), you also get tools to host a blog, and also your own photo gallery. For free. That's right, you don't even have to pay a single penny. The sign-up process is relatively trouble-free as well. It does ask for a lot of info, but nearly all of it is optional, so you can leave most of it blank if you're worried about them knowing too much about you.

Oh...one more thing...you get 100MB of web space to put up your web page. FTP accessible so you can use it just as an on-line disk if you want. (They don't mind, it's a replacement for Apple's iDisk service).

I've mostly tried just e-mail and blogging and of course, there are no problems with Mozilla or Firefox on OS/2. I have no affiliation whatsoever with Spymac. Remember! If you don't like it, nobody's forcing you to use it!

Looking for More OS/2 eZine Content?

How about writing it? The OS/2 eZine has to be a community effort, the more writers we have to spread the work around, the better the issues will be and the easier it is for everyone. If you're working on a cool OS/2 project that you think the readership of the OS/2 eZine would find interesting, we're looking for one-off articles as well as short series and monthly columns to fill the pages of the OS/2 eZine. Trying some cool new software? How about writing a short review? It doesn't take much time and you can win some great prizes!

Have a Product or Service you think our readers would be interested In?

If you have a product you think the readership of the OS/2 eZine might find interesting, take a look at our Advertising page. We've got an offer we think you'll find hard to refuse.

The OS/2 e-Zine is committed to serving the OS/2 and eCS community by providing accurate, useful, and timely information every month. We will deliver user-oriented hardware and software reviews, thoughtful editorial comment, and 'how-to' articles which will include useful tips for both the novice and the experienced OS/2 user.

Previous Article
Next Article

Copyright (C) 2004. All Rights Reserved.