[conspire] Linux program to remove mail from server?

Ross Bernheim rossbernheim at speakeasy.net
Thu Apr 28 07:26:41 PDT 2005

On Apr 28, 2005, at 12:09 AM, Edmund J. Biow wrote:

> On Wednesday 27 April 2005 19:33, Ross Bernheim wrote:
>> One of the great complaints that I hear about the OS X interface is 
>> all
>> the eye candy. I agree that some of it is excessive,
> I have to agree.  My only experience with OSX was helping an older 
> friend configure here expensive Airport and Emac to work with her 
> husband's Windows system.  The thing cost 3 times as much as a PC that 
> would have been much faster.  Despite having a 733 MHz CPU, it was 
> pig-slow because all the eye candy (the thing that annoyed me the most 
> was the undulating & dissappearing Taskbar equivalent).  With Windows 
> and Linux I know how to turn all those quasi-transparent animated & 
> shadowed thingamabobs off, but I had no idea how to do so with the Mac 
> (the settings were all really buried, so they resisted my initial 
> efforts & I didn't have time to Google around).

Earlier versions of OS X were horrendous with the excesses. It has 
since gotten much better and some of that stuff can be turned off or 
made at least less objectionable. Actually there are a couple of ways 
to make the task bar quit that 'undulation'  which is something that I
dislike in general, but if you really load up the task bar, the icons 
do get rather small and a bit of magnification as you roll over the 
icons can help.

> What's more, esthetic concerns trumped functionality in a way that I 
> found absolutely vexing.  The peripheral connectors were out of the 
> way on the side of the machine.  Working on the innards looked like it 
> would be a PITA, not that I needed to open the box up.  The thing 
> shipped with a cute transparent 1 button mouse, forchristsakes.  No 
> scroll, no context menu.  Sure, it looked spiffy, but it is a piece of 
> hardware, not art.  Form follows function.  I gave her a cheap $3 
> Gateway scroll USB mouse and she was much happier.

I have seen a lot of computers, and most times the peripheral 
connectors are out of the way on the back of the machine which is even 
more inconvenient than the Mac. E-Macs and iMacs are not really meant 
to be worked on by the consumer and yes they are a PITA to work on. The 
more recent models do make it easier to add memory and wireless cards 
to though. Apple has blown it big time on mice since they went to the 
hockey puck and up to the present time. OS X does support 3 button 
mice. No problem, just replace the glitzy Apple mouse with the three 
button USB mouse of your choice. My choice is the Logitech wireless 
unit with the trackball under your thumb and two buttons and a scroll 
wheel that also is the third button when you press down on it. I have a 
number of them between work and home. A lot of people replace the mouse 
on their PC's as well since most come with cheap mice. I will say that 
Apple does build a sturdy long lasting mouse. I still have the Apple 
one button ADB mouse that came with my Mac II in 1988 and it still 
works well after many, many miles of use.

> Moreover, I've heard from a Mac user friend that Macs these days are 
> mostly just commodity hardware, except for the CPU.  PCI cards, 
> standard PC memory, IDE drives. I.e., nothing special. My buddy has 
> had at least as much trouble with his G3 as I've had with any three of 
> my systems and it & its peripherals cost him far more than all three 
> of those computers cost me to build.  And despite him spending 
> thousands on the box (and bearing in mind the fact that Macs retain 
> value far longer than PCs) it is still only a 266 MHz machine and 
> ending its useful life as a desktop computer.

I am sorry that your buddy has had problems with his G3. I have had no 
real problems with any of my Macs over the years. Worn out batteries on 
some used laptops, but that is to be expected. I did have a power 
supply (Sony) fail on my Mac II after a good number of years. The Mac 
II had long been retired and I wanted to donate it to a recycling 
outfit and went to check it out and the supply had died. They had 
another Mac II with a bad motherboard and good power supply, so they 
were happy to get my Mac II and peripherals to make a good system. A 
power supply failure after over 7 years is not too bad.

Yes, Apple does use a lot of standard parts to help reduce costs. The 
result is that the 'premium' that you used to pay for a Mac has gotten 
rather small these days. Ask AMD about clock speed versus work done. 
Also Apple has never had nor gone for the fastest machine, they need to 
produce in quantity a reliable machine. The top speed processors have a 
couple of problems besides heat. They are generally not available in 
the large quantities Apple needs and they are extremely expensive.

> I think the future of computing in most of the world is reliable free 
> software (though not necessarily Linux) on cheap commodity hardware. 
> But then again, as someone once said "Brazil is the country of the 
> future and always will be!"

Ask Rick about cheap commodity hardware. You get what you pay for when 
you shop only by price.

> On Wednesday 27 April 2005 19:46, Rick Moen wrote:
>> Edward described a
>> classic situation plainly calling for simple scripting -- a 
>> laundry-list
>> of POP3 sites to have bulk delete operations performed on them -- but
>> he then rejected out of hand a number of utilities probably suitable 
>> to
>> his problem because they aren't "GUI".
> Rick, for you it is simple scripting.  For someone who is not a member 
> of the priesthood it is a weeks-long learning project.    While a 
> console would work fine to implement some sort of filter, what I want 
> is to see a list of my email headers, then select the ones I want to 
> delete and remove them from the server.  Even if I could write a 
> script that would poll my pop3 servers and print the headers to a 
> console, I'm not immediately seeing how I'd then tell the computer to 
> delete numbers 3, 8, 12, 16-18 & 24 without typing all those numbers 
> in and issuing a delete command. I'd find it a lot faster to hold down 
> the Control button and mouse my way over a list using the widgets that 
> god provided for our edification.
> For me this sort of scripting exercise doesn't seem like the best use 
> of my scarce screwing-around time, especially if there is a way to 
> accomplish my task that doesn't require what would be for me heroic 
> measures.  I'd rather rather spend that time teaching myself IMAP and 
> Fetchmail, like Bill suggested.
> Edmund

For the average user, the computer is a tool to get a job done, not an 
end in itself. I pay good money for this tool to make my life easier. I 
do not want to have to learn esoteric scripting etc. just to use it!

Personally, I will learn a bit, but I seem to only be able to cram so 
much in my brain at a time so learning is a bit slow these days. A good 
GUI is much easier to use for those occasional times when I need to do 
a task that is not something I do everyday.


Hear about the electrician that changed the flavor of preserves he used 
every week?
He preferred alternating currant (Harry Marmoset)

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