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Re: [Lynx-dev] Ot: how email size is established?

From: Bela Lubkin
Subject: Re: [Lynx-dev] Ot: how email size is established?
Date: Tue, 23 May 2023 21:42:39 -0700

Karen Lewellen wrote:

> Oh its quite likely our administrator made changes, even without realizing
> the harm caused.
> The other end is not getting the communications at all, instead I am told
> that my email cannot leave here, even if it could leave here previously.

Over the years, email has been growing more and more headers related to
anti-spam efforts.  Message hashes, authentications, stuff like that.
It is quite likely that your site admin either enabled some such
feature; raised the size of an encryption key; or allowed some software
component to upgrade in a manner which led to that sort of change.

It is also likely that this file which you've sent many times before was
previously just a tiny smidge below the limit; so any small change on
the margin was going to push it past the previously invisible /
unknown-to-you limit.

You said you're sending this file to  I'm not visually
impaired so I have only a few peripheral encounters & ideas of how these
things work, so bear with my guesses & assumptions here.

Years ago I would have assumed that a site like that would only know
about the most popular formats, and text only -- probably meaning MS
Word, PDF, and maybe PostScript.  But by now it may support a wide
variety of formats including HTML, spreadsheets, and who knows what
else.  It also may, or may not, support various sorts of containers.
For instance, if you send it 'myfile.doc' (an MS Word doc), I'm pretty
sure it will know what to do.  But if you send it '' -- a
Zip archive containing that same MS Word doc, will it still know what to
do?  What about 'myfile.doc.7z' or '.xz' or whatever?

Those are some directions I would recommend you explore.  Depending on
the input format, you may be able to compress it sufficiently that,
after being bloated by the outgoing encoding, it'll still fit within the
~10MB limit.

You also mentioned that you've sent this same file before for conversion.
Would you happen to have *received* any of those conversions?  e.g. if
you sent out 'myfile.doc' and received back 'myfile.pdf', it is possible
the .pdf file will be smaller.  Maybe you could use that as your input
file for the next round.  Obviously this will only help if the file is
really meant to be unchanged; if at least one of the conversions ended
up a smaller file than the original; and -- importantly -- if
reconversion will not end up mangling the file beyond usability.  But
these are things you can test.

Finally, it *might* work (and *might* be suitable) to edit the source
file, removing some sort of redundancy (extra verbiage, unnecessary
images, whatever).  This is more drastic, of course.  A sub-technique
I've used with great success is to de-resolution images.  e.g. save a
large JPEG at '50% quality' and it's likely to be megabytes smaller.  If
the source document contains any such things -- and if you have a way to
evaluate the suitability of any proposed reductions...

TLDR on possible fixes:

- try to reduce your input file size
- by some sort of compression
- by preconverting to a different format which happens to be smaller
- by editing the actual contents, including possibly de-rezzing images
- (back to the top) disable / detune newly added email security features

And one final thought: Google Translate lets you paste in text for
direct translation; OR, paste in a URL and will grab a web site for you
and translate it.  Can work from a URL, like a 'cloud'
link to Dropbox / Google Drive / whatever?  ANSWER: I just actually
opened robobraille and *yes*, it takes URLs!

So, ignore most of that blather... upload your file to some 'cloud
place', make a 'share' link, paste the link into robobraille.

Except -- this seems to have an accessibility issue.  Robobraille's
email interface sounds like it only allows direct attachments; I don't
seem to see a way to tell it *via email* to translate a file found at a
URL.  Which means has a bit of an accessibility issue!

Circling way back around to Lynx, I can't quite tell whether their
upload page can be
made to operate.  But it does seem to work (at least I get further) with
links-the-chain.  From there you should be able to either directly
upload the file from your shell account; or give it the URL of a 'cloud'

Hope this helps...


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