implementing email over atom pub

It would be kind of neat to refactor email into a web style system which conforms to atom publishing protocol.

POP3 could be a type of store. When a user wants to check their email, their email client software could ask the atom server “GET /email/messages?start=yesterday%20afternoon&count=100“. The server would respond with a list of members fitting that description. Some meta-data could describe whether or not the message has been seen before, etc…

When the user wants to respond to an email, their client software might “POST /email/messages/02123/replies” with a response body representing a member entry: a single email message with the apropriate metadata. Or it might PUT /email/people/liz@example.com instead. The store could be a gateway to any email protocol.

The advantages of this over the traditional email systems aren’t very clear. However, it could potentially lift a technical barrier to entry for an unknown generation of expert user interface designers, which could lead to simpler and more useful lives by making it easier to create user interfaces for complex systems. (Eg, your mail would be pervasive over the web, in addition to not-web. I know it’s weak.)

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