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Minor new email

A mail productivity trick.

I check my email several times a day, and typically find two or three new messages each time. A mailing list on local issues is the source of a few too many of these, but I worried that if I routed these to their own folder that I'd forget to check it. (I can go days without checking my xml-dev folder.) Because the messages are not made publicly available, I had reservations about converting them to an Atom feed.

I had an idea that's worked out well. I created a folder called "minor new email" and created rules that forward mail from several sources there: the local mailing list, frequent flier statements, Ticketmaster announcements about upcoming concerts, and mail from dell.com other other companies who have my email address because I once bought something from them.

I do remember to check this folder once a day, and new messages now show up in my main inbox less frequently and are more likely to be good reasons to interrupt my real work of the day. I hate to delete a Ticketmaster email until I've looked through it for potentially interesting concerts and forwarded it to my wife if so, but that's not worth losing my train of thought on more serious work, and the cumulative effect of similar emails spread out across the day can take a chunk out of your schedule.

There's another nice email productivity trick that I've done for a few years and that Sean McGrath discovered last summer: when reviewing your spam, sort it by sender name. This groups foreign character sets together and repeat offenders as well, making it easier to quickly skim through without missing false positives that your spam checker flagged.