Little Known Email Facts


There are many things in our long history of which we rarely think about, email included. However, in the process of their development there were unpredictable, absurd and funny facts. Email is one such really fascinating invention. Few people know when the first letter was sent, why we separate the domains with the “@” syntax and which letters the Queen of Britain sends. Therefore, we invite you to the time machine on key and interesting points in the development of email. Let us go!

1. First Email

The father of the first personalized email was American programmer Raymond Samuel Tomlinson. At the end of 1971, he sent an email to a nearby computer. It was probably something: “QWERTYUIOP,” as Tomlinson himself later said, because he had forgotten the exact text.

2. The Queen and Email

On March 26, 1976, Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain sent her first e-mail while visiting the Royal Radio Signal and Radar Institution in Malvern. Thus Her Majesty had a personal account HME2.

They say that the Queen has always been friends with the digital world and used email for public and personal purposes

She regularly wrote to her grandchildren during their studies. Moreover, in 2009 the Queen sent a letter to 23 young bloggers living in the former territories of the British Empire, with the theme “Message from Her Majesty the Queen” and the signature “Elizabeth R.”

3. E-mail or Email?

No matter how you answer this question, you will still be right. Tomlinson, the inventor of modern email, was leaning toward a hyphen. In one interview, he laughed at this subject: “I’m just trying to maintain a global supply of hyphens. Plus, the term has been used long enough to drop a hyphen. However, it seems to be a losing battle. ” And query statistics on Google confirms this fact.

4. Email Address before “@”

The first email was sent through a structure similar to FTP (File Transport Protocol), so the email address of the time might look like this: utzoo! Decvax! Harpo! Eagle! Mhtsa! Ihnss! Ihuxp! grg. Every “!” restricts the computer to an address, and the user acts as a human router by sending a message.

5. The New Meaning of @ in the Digital World

Raymond Tomlinson also used the syntax “@” to understand which host the mail was sent from.

He borrowed the sign “@” from payment documents, where it was an analogue of the English preposition “at”

“@”made it possible for letters to enter the inbox of the addressee, and the addresses themselves began to look like this: patrik @ computer1.

6. The Meaning of the Sign “@“

We know the “@” sign as just “at”, but what is interesting is that it has another name in other countries of the world.

The most popular names are: snail (Italy, Ukraine, Belarus), dog (Russia, Tatarstan), monkey (Germany, Poland, Croatia, Slovenia)

However, the following names may seem somewhat unusual to us:

– the ear of the moon – Kazakhstan;
– cat tail – Finland;
– worm, tick, caterpillar, pig tail – Hungary;
– herring under the marinade (rolmops) – Czech Republic, Slovakia;
– strudel – Israel;
– “a” with a trunk or an elephant trunk – in the Scandinavian countries: Denmark, Sweden.
– Kanelballle (swirling cinnamon roll) – Norway.

7. The First Email from Space

The first letter from outer space came on August 28, 1991. It was sent from a Mac laptop. Astronauts Shannon Lucid and James S. Adamson sent a message to their colleague Marcia Ivins, a shuttle communicator at the Johnson Space Center. Here is its exact content:
“Hello Earth! Greetings from the STS-43 Crew. This is the first AppleLink from space. Having a GREAT time, wish you were here,…send cryo and RCS! Hasta la vista, baby,…we’ll be back!”

We would like to mention that the movie “Terminator 2” was at the peak of its popularity at that time.

8. The First Free Postal Service

The first free email service appeared in 1996. It became, but now we know it more as, as it joined the company Microsoft.

9. The Most Common Password

The most popular email protection password is 123456. This fact appeared in 2009, when more than 10,000 Hotmail passwords leaked to the public access.

10. Email Changes Morse code

In 2004, the “@” symbol was added to Morse code to transfer email addresses.

To indicate it in the signal, you need to transmit: · – · – ·

This is the only official change in Morse code since the First World War.

11. Mailbox Size Smaller than your Favorite Song

In the late 90s, you could get only 4 MB in the Hotmail and Yahoo account. This is even smaller than the size of one modern track.

12. The Gmail Revolution

Not surprisingly, the launch of Gmail on April 1, 2004 with 1GB of free disk space was taken for granted.

13. Emoticons in Email

Kevin Mackenzie sent the first emoticon in an email on April 12, 1979. His smiley was a symbol -) and meant the tongue to the cheek. Mackenzie also contacted the Message Services Group with a proposal to add emotion communication to a dry electronic language.

14. First opportunities to Send an Electronic Letter

The first standard for email was proposed in 1973. In 1977, it was finalized at Arpanet. There appeared fields “round up”, as well as the ability to send emails to persons who were not originally recipients.

As we know, the capabilities of mailers are now much wider. There are so many different features only for mailing via Gmail, not to mention other modern free email service.

15. More than a Text

The attachment was born in 1992 when the Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (Mime) protocol was released. This is how a painful attempt to delete letters began in order to free up space after someone sent you a massive attachment in the days of limited space of incoming messages.

16. Email Promotion

E-mail was fixed in the public mind thanks to the sound “you have mail” that accompanied new messages in the AOL domain. Finally, it became the cornerstone of a romantic comedy with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan in 1998: “You Got Mail”.

17. Email Becomes Mobile for Regular Users

Apple’s first iPhone to enable mobile email was released in 2007.

18. ILOVEYOU – a Virus that Entered the Guinness Book of Records

From May 1 to May 5, 2000, the mail worm, according to some estimates, caused damage of 1.54 billion US dollars and infected 3.1 million computers worldwide. At the same time, it mutated three times in 4 days. The virus sent itself to all available contacts of the MS Outlook mailbox if the malicious email was opened. It got into the Guinness Book of Records because of the enormous amount of damage to the world economy.

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