Random idea: Constrained email.

One thing I’ve been surprised about is the fact that the success of Twitter has not brought on any other really successful ‘constraint driven’ services. At least none that I can think of off the top of my head.

And in thinking about that, one of the biggest things that I think is ripe for playing around with constraints is of course 'email’.

Why aren’t there email services that let you set a character limit you’ll accept for incoming email (ie. if the body is over 500 characters, reject the email)…or limits on how much email you’ll accept on a given day (ie. only send me 500 incoming emails; reject the rest)…or limits on how much a given user can send you in a day.

Gmail is amazing, and one of my core tools, but it’s not perfect for all situations. Filters work for some situations (though I don’t use them personally), but even they are pretty limited (why can’t I set up a filter for example to just show me emails from people I’ve never communicated with via email before?)

While it’s not a personal passion spot for me (and hence, I likely won’t be 'seriously’ hacking on it any time soon), there is just so much more that can/should be done with email as a whole…experimenting with constraints seems like especially promising area to start.

So…you should *totally* go build that. :-)

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This is the personal blog of Kevin Marshall (a.k.a Falicon) where he often digs into side projects he's working on for digdownlabs.com and other random thoughts he's got on his mind.

Kevin has a day job as CTO of Veritonic and is spending nights & weekends hacking on Share Game Tape. You can also check out some of his open source code on GitHub or connect with him on Twitter @falicon or via email at kevin at falicon.com.

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