Saturday, December 16, 2006

Am I too slow...

I feel that I'm not doing as much as I should with this subject. Because of the silly season approaching so fast, there is too little time for me to do all the modules - however I'll keep persisting and working my way through it. Every spare time that I get is spent reading or tring to understand the topics.
I don't think that I'm alone....thanks to everone on the discussion board!!

Module 2: Lists

Compare 'Lists' and 'Discussion Boards' and write the advantages and disadvantages:

E-Mail Lists: I think that e-mail lists are more versatile because of the different ways that it can be used. For example, e-mails can be sent to groups or individuals and can be very specific. Only people that are interested in similar topics can communicate to each other. Also, e-mails are sent directly to the receivers 'inbox' which means that it is read whan the person checks their e-mail.

Another great advantage of e-mail lists is that you can receive information that you are directly interested in knowing about. This enables the receiver to react to the e-mail instantly and accordingly.

Discussion Boards: Discussion boards are great for topics in general - like we do in Web CT. However, I think that the problem with it is that most of the time, the past messages have to be read to refresh our memories to understand what the current discussion is about. This takes (or wastes) a lot of time as we have to go over old ground.

To me, discussions become boring after some time and I tend not to read all of them. There are a lot of one or two word answers such as "thanks" and "will do" etc. on the discussion board - which really means nothing to everyone else.

Discuss if one better then another:

I think that e-mail lists are more suited for people to advertise products or services to groups that have the same or very similar interests. However, the thought of publishing my e-mail address in the public domain is too scary. As it is, there are so many junk/unauthorised e-mails already coming from somewhere...
Discussion boards are more suited for the purpose that we use it for in Web CT. It is more 'light hearted' as all the discussion isn't always about one specific topic. It is also a great forum to help and encougarge people on discussion boards.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Module 2: Email Tasks

1. What information about a user's email, the origin of a message, and the path it took, can you glean from an email message?

(Applies to all e-mails)
The surface meta data shows the e-mail address/name of the originator of the e-mail IE 'From'. It also shows the receivers e-mail address/name IE 'To'

(May apply to some e-mails - depending on the information entered by sender)
Depending on the person sending the e-mail, it may also show other information such as the 'subject' of the e-mail, 'attachments' included, 'cc' information and file size. The body of the e-mail shows the content, from which a person can determine what the e-mail is about and who it's intended for.

I can find out more information by 'right clicking' on an email and choosing the 'options' tag from the drop down list. This gives me access to other information such as the 'IP' address of the e-mail, the path the e-mail took to get to me, the time it was sent and other valuable information. (see pic below)

2. In what cases would you find it useful to use the 'cc', 'bcc' and 'reply all functions of email?

'CC' - Carbon Copy - When you want all parties to to see who the other recipients of the e-mail are. This is a non-preferred way of sending e-mails as it give all recipients access to every ones e-mail address.

'BCC' - Blind Carbon Copy or Blind Courtesy Copy - A great way to send to multiple recipients yet making it personal. The recipients will have the impression that you wrote your e-mail just for them. Also protects the e-mails recipients fro getting spam mail as their e-mail address is hidden from all others on the 'bcc' list.

'Reply' - Request for a response - The e-mail sender may request for a reply to ensure that the receiver has got the e-mail to act or respond to it. The receiver may choose to reply to an e-mail on their own, especially if the e-mail sender is asking questions in the body of the e-mail and is expecting an answer.

3. In what ways can you ensure that an attachment you send will be easily opened by the receiver?

Make the attachments small in byte size so that the e-mail receiver can download it easily and quickly - especially if they are pictures.

The e-mail can also be sent in an ASCII form, which is a code form that does not include special formatting features and can be read by most computers. (see links below for more info)
4. What sorts of filters or rules do you have set up, and for what purpose?

My e-mail software (Microsoft Office Outlook) has been configured and set up to filter spam mail. However, I have to create rules almost every time I check my e-mails as there are spam e-mails that come through almost all the time.
When I create rules, it blocks e-mails from the senders and sends them to the 'junk' e-mail folder to be deleted automatically.
The purpose of setting up the filters and rules is to weed out e-mails that are just plain useless to me!

5. How have you organised the folder structure of your email and why?

My e-mail folders are structured as follows:
  • deleted items
  • drafts
  • inbox
  • junk e-mail
  • outbox
  • sent items
  • search folders
When I open my e-mail programme, it opens up in my 'inbox' folder. The list of e-mails are sorted out in date order, the latest e-mail being first on the list.
The reason why I've set it up this way is to ensure that I read and act upon every e-mail that I receive.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Module 2: E-Mail Tutorial

Introduction: I've got all the requirements to do the tasks for E-Mail basics IE e-mail address and software.

E-Mail Basics: Address
The user name and domain name are two elements that are essential for an e-mail to be sent from the sender to the receiver.
The activity to search peoples e-mail addresses proved to be quite difficult. 'Lyco's and Yahoo people search' were not very helpful as they were USA based search engines.
I tried the following search engines for Australia:
I found it very difficult to search E-mail addresses. The reason why it's hard is because of the information required to start the search, such as full names, addresses, phone numbers etc.
The conclusion I reached from this exercise is that it's best to get e-mail addresses from people by just asking them!

E-Mail Basics: Messages
I have this set up - pop quiz was easy.

E-Mail Basics: Attaching Files
Attaching files is a great way of sending pictures and information. I learnt that the ASCII files can be read by anyone that may not have the appropriate software to open the files being sent.

E-Mail Basics: Managing Your E-Mail
I've had to use this facility quite a lot lately due to all the junk e-mails that are being sent to my e-mail address. Most of the mail are repetitive and have the same content. By blocking the senders e-mail address and creating rules to send all junk e-mails to the 'junk' e-mail folder, I've noticeably been able to reduce the junk e-mails.

E-Mail Basics: Signatures
'COOLSIG' - what a great site! I suppose it's easy enough to have signatures at the end of every e-mail, however I think it would be more appropriate to call it a 'disclaimer' instead of a 'signature'.

For Example:
'This message and its attachments are confidential and may contain information which is protected by copyright. It is intended solely for the named addressee. If you are not the authorised recipient (or responsible for delivery of the message to the authorised recipient), you must not use, disclose, print, copy or deliver this message or its attachments to anyone. If you receive this email in error, please contact the sender immediately and permanently delete this message and its attachments from your system.
Any content of this message and its attachments that does not relate to the official business of .... or its subsidiaries must be taken not to have been sent or endorsed by any of them. No representation is made that this email or its attachments are without defect or that the contents express views other than those of the sender.'

E-Mail Basics: Mail Etiquette
E-mails should be treated with the aim of respecting the receiver. In many instances, it is not only the receiver that may end up viewing or reading the e-mail that is sent to him/her - especially in a work enviroment.
It is also easy enough to click a few buttons and 'forward' messages, especially jokes and pictures. But is this real communication or just a nuisance for the receiver? Personally, I consider anyone who only 'forwards' jokes and pictures to me as a junk e-mailer. Without the aim of offending people, I always send them e-mail asking them to delete me from their e-mail adress book.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006


I have not had a chance to get on the WebCT to do any work over the last week - and it has been driving me mad. I suppose that there are many people in the same boat as me, who work full time and have other commitments.
I hope to put in at least 2 hours tonight and catch up with some studies - possibly finish module two. I've been reading the student discussions - very quickly - which is not a good practice.
Thanks to all for some of the discussions. As usual, a lot of the questions are answered by students and sometimes it seems pointless to just post a comment for the sake of it. It just adds on to the number of unread messages for no reason.