Hi! My name is Cédric Bozzi, I make websites and iOS apps, and this is my blog about technology (mostly a Twitter archive, really).

17 May 2005

Am I dreaming or doesn’t Mail.app have an option not to automatically mark messages as read? It’s really sad to make a mail client whose inner workings would allow it to better Opera, and completely miss the mark by refusing to add an option — and such an elementary one.

Let me remind you how the best mail client in the world works: there’s no proper inbox like in the others, and the user never needs to move a message from one folder to another. There’s a special “Unread” folder (a magical folder, à la Spotlight), in which all unread messages arrive, and they stay there until they’ve been marked as read. Then, they’re no longer there — but they’re everywhere else: in the “Received” folder, in the sender’s folder, in the free-form searches. No tedious drag and dropping the messages to sort them, no unsorted 10,000-message inbox, all you have to do is click a button (or press ‘K’) once you’ve read / responded / processed a message — that is, when you don’t need it in your inbox anymore. And Mail.app could do the exact same thing, if only it didn’t insist on marking messages as read without asking me what I want.

Not sure that was quite clear, but it’s very hard to explain, and all you can do is try. I already converted my stepfather, so why wouldn’t you follow?

So, in the end, maybe it won’t matter a bit that it doesn’t manage to import my mail from Opera. Anyway, considering how some experts have criticized Mail.app, I’m probably not missing much. I can only hope Opera will work well on OS X.

P.S. There it is, all transferred in a few seconds (well, more like ten minutes to compress my gigabyte of archived mail, and one minute to copy the zip file) from Opera to Opera. And they were kind enough to use the native OS X theme as a default — although nobody uses those kinds of tabs, so I’ll have to check their site for a better, more modern skin.

P.S. Multiply the migration time by two, because it’s substantially better if I import the right mail archive, the one that’s up to date. Go figure why Opera 8 ended up storing my mail in the Opera754 folder.

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