Heritage, Volume 14, Number 4, Fall 1996 Page: 9
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Each person with access to the Internet
usually has the capability of receiving electronic
mail (e-mail). As described previously,
each gopher, World Wide Web, ftp,
or telnet site on the Internet is reached via
an address (URL). Similarly, each person
accessing the Internet has an address where
he or she can receive messages from others
on the Internet.
This address most often takes the form
of a username followed by the "at" character
(@), followed by a domain name, i.e.
mcarroll @alpha.nsula.edu. The username
indicates the person for whom the mail is
intended. The domain name refers to the
physical location of the computer through
which the user accesses the Internet. For
example, in the address, mcarroll@alpha.
nsula.edu, mcarroll is the user and
alpha.nsula.edu is the domain. Mail sent to
email@example.com will be saved at
the space allocated to Mary Carroll
(mcarroll) on the computer named alpha
at Northwestern State University of Louisiana
There are many software applications
that can be used to read, send, forward,
save, delete, and otherwise organize e-mail.
The transmission of electronic messages is
independent of these programs. That is, it
is not necessary for the sender and the
receiver to use the name application. They
will still be able to communicate.
At its simplest, e-mail is used for communication
between individuals. In that
case, the sender will compose the message,
attach the receiver's address, and send it
using the e-mail program. The receiver will
be notified by his or her e-mail program
that mail has been received and the receiver
can then read, reply to, forward,
save, or delete that message.
Bulletin board systems (BBS), commonly
referred to as bulletin boards, use email
to facilitate discussion between large
numbers of people. This system is based on
the concept of real bulletin boards where
people pin messages at one centralized place
for others to visit and read. In a computerized
bulletin board, there is a central site
(computer) with an e-mail address where
messages are sent. Anyone can "visit" the
bulletin board and read any posted message.
Most bulletin boards are created to discuss
a particular topic. The best example of
this is Usenet newsgroups on the Internet.
Simply access Usenet (the process will vary
by the service provider), pick a topic (there
are thousands), and you see a list of posted
messages. You can then view them, respond
to them, or post a new message.
Bulletin boards also exist outside the
Internet. In place of an e-mail address, a
phone number is associated with the system.
Users access the bulletin board via
modem and then view, respond, and post
A listserv is an electronic discussion
forum that takes the form of an e-mail
mailing list. The term listserv comes from
the software that is used to create and
administer most of these lists. Unlike bulletin
boards where messages are sent and
saved to a central site, listserv messages are
sent by individuals to a central site but then
redistributed by the software to the e-mail
addresses on a list. Participants must subscribe
to the list by sending a standardized
message to a specified address. Any messages
sent to the address for the listserv are
then sent to every address on the list. None
is stored at the listserv site. Subscribers
receive listserv communications in the email
and can respond or post new messages
Like bulletin boards, listservs usually are
created for the discussion of particular topics
and are named to reflect that subject.
For example, MUSEUM-Lis a listserv devoted
to discussion of museum-related issues;
similarly, ARCH-L is devoted to issues
in archaeology. There are hundreds if
not thousands of listservs available on the
Internet. The Center maintains a guide
titled "Internet Resources for Heritage Conservation,
Historic Preservation and Archaeology"
which includes a section on
listservs. It is available via the Center's
gopher (gopher://gopher.ncptt.nps.gov) or
World Wide Web (http.//www.cr.nps.gov/
ncptt) sites. Other resource guides are available
at the Clearinghouse of Subject Oriented
Internet Resource Guides, which
also is accessible via the National Center's
Mary S. Carroll is information management
specialist at the National Center for Preservation
Technology and Training.
HERITAGE * FALL 1996 9
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 14, Number 4, Fall 1996, periodical, Autumn 1996; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45407/m1/9/: accessed October 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.