How it integrates into email?

I have read over the site and watched a couple of videos.

I am still a little confused.

Does delta chat needs it own email account?

What I mean, is that if I use delta chat on my mail email account, how does the email software I use (thunderbird in my case) know when it is a delta chat message, and vice versa?

Or, are the all mixed together? If they are mixed together, than with all the various chats, and the emails coming in, managing would be a challenge.

As well, it talks about the message being encrypted. How can a recipient that does nto yet have delta, read them?

Thanks for the feedback.

I recommend a dedicated account*, but you can also use it with your existing account in parallel with an other MUA/email client.

As long as DC runs in the background it can move all DC emails into the DeltaChat imap folder.
If it can’t run always in the background, the chat messages stay in the inbox, but you can also solve this with server-side filter rules (move all mails with the chat header to the DeltaChat as soon as they arrive)
If you can’t do server rules, I believe a filter rule in thunderbird also works.

https://delta.chat/en/help#what-do-i-have-to-do-to-activate-the-end-to-end-encryption

Autocrypt, all Email clients capable of the Autocrypt standard can decrypt the emails.
But the whole encryption is opportunistic, so as soon as the other side has the key it does encrypt - which means the message until the first answer are not encrypted. Unless DC already knows the key because of a shared group.

https://autocrypt.org/
https://autocrypt.org/dev-status.html

There is an autocrypt plugin for TB, but as far as I know it doesn’t work on the new thunderbird 78 that broke all addons, but they (TB seem to work on basic autocrypt support integrated directly into TB.

*for a list of providers that are known to (not) work with DC see https://providers.delta.chat/