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Posts Tagged ‘emails

All call…


From All Staff, All Day— a Tumblr devoted to “genuine emails that people feel the need to send to all staff at my company.”


As we carefully avoid hitting “reply all,” we might send electrifying birthday greetings to Serbian-American electrical engineer and inventor Nikola Tesla; he was born on this date in 1856.  (Tesla’s birth certificate says “June 28″ in the Orthodox system– most scholars convert this to July 9; some, to July 10.)  Tesla is probably best remembered for his rivalry with Thomas Edison:  Tesla invented and patented the first AC motor and generator (c.f.: Niagara Falls); Edison promoted DC power… and went to great lengths to discredit Tesla and his approach.  In the end, of course, Tesla was right.

Tesla patented over 300 inventions worldwide, though he kept many of his creations out of the patent system to protect their confidentiality.  His work ranged widely, from technology critical to the development of radio to the first remote control.  At the turn of the century, Tesla designed and began planning a “worldwide wireless communications system” that was backed by J.P. Morgan…  until Morgan lost confidence and pulled out.  “Cyberspace,” as described by the likes of William Gibson and Neal Stephenson, is largely prefigured in Tesla’s plan.  On Tesla’s 75th birthday in 1931, Time put him on its cover, captioned “All the world’s his power house.”  He received congratulatory letters from Albert Einstein and more than 70 other pioneers in science and engineering.  But Tesla’s talent ran far, far ahead of his luck.  He died penniless in 1943.



Written by LW

July 9, 2013 at 1:01 am

With hope that you will be in Heaven thirty minutes before the devil knows you’re dead…


From Liz Danzico and her bodacious blog Bobulate:

Forget what you’ve heard about first impressions; it’s the last impressions that count. Last impressions — whether they’re with customer service, an online shopping experience, or a blind date — are the ones we remember. They’re the ones that keep us coming back. But there’s one kind of final impression that people seem to forget.

The closing line of email — that line that you write before you type your name — has been all but forgotten.

Danzico proceeds to offer a kind of taxonomy of ta-ta’s:

If a closing line can be so meaningful, so important, why are emailers squandering the opportunity, putting no thought in the closing? Time, perhaps, iPhone-finger exhaustion, multi-tasking—they’re all possible excuses. And many times, acceptable ones. We can’t be expected to neatly tie up every email every time. But once in a while, it would be delightful if people applied the same sincerity to the last impressions that we do to first ones.

Enjoy Danzico’s analysis at “Second Chance for a Last Impression.”

Your humble and obedient servant,

[TotH to GMSV]


As we concentrate on the complimentary close, we might recall that it was on this date in 490 BCE that– because there was no postal service, and thus no facility for sending messages with closings of any level of courtesy or creativity– Pheidippides of Athens set out on the run that inspired the Marathon.  Pheidippides was on a mission seeking military support from Sparta in defense against the invading Persian army.  Tradition (that’s to say, Herodotus) holds that he ran the ran 246 km (153 miles) between the two city-states in two days.  The Spartans, constrained by religious law, were unwilling to help until the next full moon.  So two days later, Phidippides ran the return leg alone.

Pheidippides then ran the 40 km (25+ miles) from the battlefield to Athens to announce the Greek victory over Persia in the Battle of Marathon; he uttered the word Nenikékamen (“We have won”), collapsed, and died on the spot from exhaustion.

Statue of Pheidippides on the Marathon road (source)


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