[Discussion] Make DC a replacement for MUAs?

exactly what we want, currently we are not doing this ‘one thing’ well and need another email client to do it, it is like a ‘cat’ command that some times it works and for some input I need to manually use an ‘echo’ command to do the work…

seriously I think you didn’t get it, no one talked about unencrypted emails until you mentioned it now, we are talking about UI, why having a classic email view mode would means the emails are unencrypted??? currently email are unencrypted in the chat view if one of the peers do not support it, this have nothing to do with with the way you display messages!!!

There should be no “email mode” config setting (required for A simple UI with no "bullshit"! Email compatibility, which is a must, rather sooner than later, makes such a config option obsolete. :slight_smile:

The DC text editor interface may, for example, just show the text that will go into the subject of a composed classic email message with a soft shaded background, ending with the shaded standard subject separator “-” in grey. A simple manual carriage return (linefeed) could then serve to manually end the subject and start the body.

And assuming the defaults from the minimal-set of 1 preset selection (+4 hidden options) at: [Wiki] Use-cases, chat rules and configuration options, everything (chat and email) can work out-of-the-box, non-obtrusive, easily discoverable by the user, and interacting seamlessly.

A recognizable subject as described above (shown like this- in the chat text entry form) should at the same time also help with another issue:

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You asked to specify why for negatives. It’s pretty simple.

DC is a neat chat, and I want it to develop further and to be a great chat, which I can continue to recommend to my contacts.

And I really afraid that spending limited resources to 1) creating MUA functions, 2) experimenting with trying to make thing that is equally good for chatting and mailing will lead us to a thing that isn’t a good chat, nor a good MUA. And it’s a huge risk of fail.


I think Delta Chat can perfectly be a substitute for a MUA, without losing its simplicity and without implementing a classic email view,

-We must look for the reasons that would lead us to use a MUA.

-Basic characteristics of the MUA, which does not have an alternative form in Delta Chat and try to implement it, not to be the same, but to be an alternative way to solve the same problem.

For example:
I currently use an email client to be able to send messages to many people with hidden copies, currently DC has no alternative option for this. But proposals have been made that, when implemented, may be an alternative. I refer to the types of groups proposed by @adbenitez . And eventually I won’t have to use a MUA to do this.

What I see in DelatChat is a chat application that happens to use emails as its backbone.

I think chatting and writing emails are two very distinct forms of communication. Emails and its tropes (“Dear Sir”, “kind regards”, . . . ) are as alien to chats as short informal bursts of messages are to emails.
I don’t see a point trying to merge the two worlds. But that might just be me :wink:



I absolutely argree :+1:

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That’s what I tried to explain many times, but without success… :frowning:

Makes one wonder whether they simply AREN’T so distinct for others. But I can’t wrap my head around that :wink:

Anyway. Time for a little anecdote.

I remember about 10 years ago my flat mate had an iPhone and I still had an old Nokia were you could only view one message at a time. I ended every SMS with “cu Axel” and sometimes wrote things like “concerning the SMS 2 days ago were you asked…”.
He basically told me to stop it because for him that made no sense in a UI that showed him all our messages as a thread.

I think the impedance mismatch between mails and chats is even greater.

Of course for journalists or activists (were privacy and reliability take strong precedent over a little awkwardness here and there) better MUA functionality might make more sense.

Yes, actually the differences may ask for possibilities to adapt rather than divide into “silos”.

One thing to consider is a major point of the autocrypt and Email-chat standards that is they allow to communicate with the entire world, i.e. with users on their non-specific clients as well.

It’s thus important for many users to be able to easily write and receive messages that match the expectations in both worlds.

And it’s certainly possible to empower users, by finding a straight forward UI as well:

See this post, for example: Subject of emails

the problem arrives when those two world collide, one of the selling points of Delta Chat is that your friends doesn’t have to install Delta Chat to chat with you, and most the time they will not want to install yet another app, on the other hand, if you install Delta Chat you must have two apps to check the email just with different views, and your classic email client will annoy you with notifications of your own messages, since Delta Chat sends a self-bcc copy of every email you send. Also for paid data plans, it is a hassle to have two apps downloading the same messages.
So it turns out that a lot of people want to use Delta Chat has their only MUA

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I think I’m more or less understanding your point of view @agschaid

But, you are telling me that no instant messaging application (WhatsApp, Telegram Etc.) could be used for formal and respectful messages, with very well crafted phrases. I think you suffer from the disease of habit, you have used email for formal communication, and instant messaging for more casual topics, I think it’s just a matter of habit.
Anyway, whether you like it or not, many people will use DC as their only mail client, and that practice will eventually be extended.

But I tell you more, I know people who don’t know another mail client other than DeltaChat.
And that’s why DeltaChat necessarily has to be prepared for this.

Being able to fully take over the management of email messages is an option that should be implemented, in the simplest way possible.


No. I am not telling you that.
I used the word “informal”. But actually more as an example and to be concise. I never said anything about “respectful” or “well crafted phrases”.

I talked to future bosses via chat. I gave and received condolences via chat. That is as respectful and well crafted as it gets. But STILL I feel that the rhythm and feeling between those two mediums differ greatly. And I wouldn’t want those two different modi operandi represented in the same UI.

You guys do the work. You call the shots. I am really cool with that.
I figured this was open discussion and so I gave my point of view.

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I beg to differ. It took me less than 5 minutes to find a setup for DC and K-9 to coexist without the hassle you are describing. Feel free to contact me for details. I think it’s beside the point here.

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I also would be interested in your way k9 and DC work harmonious side by side.

I prefer if DC would stay a messenger only :wink:

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I do also use k9, please share your tips and tricks here so everybody knows,
anyway it is more easy to say to your friends: “hey stop using that stock email app and use this full feature email client that works as a chat app” than saying “hey use Delta Chat, and you will also need to install k9 and follow this tutorial to fine tune both apps, because it doesn’t play well with your email client”
the whole process get a bit annoying and more for non tech people.

also I have the feeling that your solution imply disabling push-IMAP in k9, or some server side filtering

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First of all, I apologize for the way I expressed myself before.

I am sure that we all have the best intentions for the development of this magnificent application.

Now I ask:

  • You expect that everyone who uses DC necessarily has to install another application for their mail management, because DC is not good enough to do the same?
  • Or expect DC to be able to coexist with another MUA without problems, and if the user decides to stay with him alone, DC will be able to provide the minimum tools necessary to do so.
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Just to talk about wording. :wink:

If I say to my (WhatsApp using) friends:
Heh, there is a new great Mail Client you can chat with.
They will answer: I don’t need a mail client. I use mail only very less. And I have a mail app which works good for me.

If I say there is a new great messenger you can reach everybody who have a mail address.
Hopfully they will install it side by side with WhatsApp.

Remember this is only my sight of this.
And belive me, in my milieu E-mail is really less important. Everybody does all via messengers.

I know, in Cuba E-mail is more popular then in many other countries.

Still I think a messenger should stay very plain in design.
Only the very important UI things and settings.

For example:
All my friends using for Mail on the mobile phone the special mail apps (f.g. for gmx they use the gmx app).
One time I tried to explain K9. Bad idea. There was to much settings. I like it but the “normal user”. will only use it without to have to much to configure.

The same for messengers.
The “normal user” want just start to chat.
Just a simple view of the current chats and a contact list.

You want another view for “normal” mails.
I’m sure that’s a bad idea.

A idea would be if someone would fork DC and integrate a mail view as you like.
This could exist side by side with DC. Maybe it will happens if DC and OX-Coi will be famous enough to be a replacement for WhatsApp.

Another mail client will never replace a messenger :wink:

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You and I, we agree more than we think.

If the survey had put:
Who wants a classic mail view in DC. I am sure that everyone would vote NO.

I think the idea, when we talk about replacement, is that the DC user does not need another client to fully manage his mail server.

So :
What a DC user would look for in another client.

  • Edit the subject
  • Send messages with hidden copy
  • Manage all server messages without so many obstacles (contact request)
  • (There may be other reasons)

The truth is, we don’t need much.