Email is the electronic equivalent of sending composing and receiving a letter through the mail. There are many different mail reading programs or applications that control email but the basic functions are all the same. An email address directs a message to the recipient.
Email addresses are made up of...

  • the account name (often the users first initial and then the last name then the @ symbol )
  • then the name of the user's ISP
  • the last 2 or 3 characters describe the type of service called the top level/Country level  domain name. For example .com stand for commercial site, edu-educational site, .mil-military, .gov-government, .au-Australia, .net - network, etc.      

    As well as sending and receiving mail the recipient can;
    • save the address for future reference in an address book
    • reply to the original message
    • forward the message to a third party  and  edit a message
    • check the spelling and a wide range of other options.
    One of the services provided by your ISP is to provide a storage area or mailbox to collect email in. Email software programs control the transfer of this stored email by downloading the messages from your mailbox on your ISP's computer to your own computer. You must be connected to the Internet to do this.

    An email message is made up of two parts; the header information and the body. The recipient's address (to), the subject, the sender's email address as well as other information is contained in the header. The content of the message is in the body. You can find out information about an email message by viewing the header content. Most email programs had a 'view header' option in the menu.

    Some companies offer free email service that you can sign up for. These free services rely on advertising for revenue so your recipient will also be receive an advertisement with the email. Usually email is accessed through a web browser where the user composes and reads their mail online. The benefit is that you can easily access your mail from any internet terminal and the address is easily disposable. The disadvantage is that it doesn't have the legitimacy of a business address and it may be difficult to complete transactions.

    You can also attach files to email messages to send picture, sound, documents, videos and other types of file with your email.


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