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Re: [Nmh-workers] Starting the final call for features for 1.7

From: Robert Elz
Subject: Re: [Nmh-workers] Starting the final call for features for 1.7
Date: Mon, 10 Oct 2016 09:07:55 +0700

    Date:        Sun, 09 Oct 2016 23:33:14 +0200
    From:        Laura Creighton <address@hidden>
    Message-ID:  <address@hidden>

  | But I get them in the order they arrived.  I want them in the order they
  | were sent, which can be a whole lot different, before I read them.

As mentioned, sortm can simulate that (kind of) - but what you're asking
for is actually impossible - nothing can put the messages in correct order
when some of them have not yet arrived...   What that means is that the order
will depend upon how long you delay before reading the messages, the longer
you wait, the more messages there will be, with some of the newer ones having
to go before others.  To come as close as it is possible to get that you
guarantee getting all of them you have to wait forever - ie: never look at
the messages - in that case you really don't care what order they're in.

Or if you read now, and then read again in an hour, more messages will have
arrived, and ones you had already read would need to be renumbered to allow
others to be inserted in their correct sequence - that could even happen
while you were in the middle of a sequence of reading messages, and would
lead to a (human factors) mess.

Nothing should ever just rename messages - only when someone actually asks
for it (such as by using sortm).   [Also note that sortm can sometimes take
a very long time to complete, so you really don't want it done as each new
message arrives, or just as a default part of swtching to a new folder - or
at least, I certainly don't, if you do, just make a script that does the
folder & sortm commands, and use that to switch folders.)


ps: I agree this hapens all the time - the case I typically see is when
person A sends a message to a list, and then person B replies, to A, and
to the list.   The copy from B to the list gets delayed (greylisting or
requiring moderator approval) - but the copy to A is delivered immesiately.
A replies to B's message - to B and the list - the copy from A to the list
goes through immediately, as his/her earlier message allowed future messages
without delay (and this sequence can repeat several times, with all of A's
messages being delivered to the list, and none of B's - for a while).
Eventually B's messages get through (often in some random order) and other
readers of the list get the messages A1 A2 A3 ... then B2 B3 B1 ...

But the delay between A3 and B2 might sometimes be days (if there is a
human moderator involved) - much too long for anything to automatically
order the messages (A's messages have already all been read before any
of B's actually arrive.)

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