Everyone knows about spam but do you how the term became associated with email? Monty Python, the British comedy show of the 70s, did a sketch that was the inspiration for the term applied to unsolicited email. Some people in a restaurant were attempting to order breakfast but everything on the menu included SPAM. Every time the word, "SPAM", was spoken, Vikings sang "SPAM, SPAM....". Vikings???? This was Monty Python.
You can expect crazy things like Vikings in a modern day restaurant. Eventually all you can hear are the Vikings singing about SPAM. When email was a novelty in the early 80s, test email messages were sent that included the words "SPAM". Eventually the term spam became applied to unsolicited email. Hormel, the marketers of SPAM, request that you refer to their product as "SPAM". The word "spam" refers to unsolicited email. Why all the spam trivia? You probably noticed that "On the technical side" didn't appear in the paper during the last few weeks. The column was the victim of spam filters. Email servers routinely use filters to discard spam. This column was incorrectly classified as spam. The lesson learned is to follow up important email with a phone call. Don't assume that email is being ignored. Non spam mail is frequently improperly classified as spam and discarded. Q: Why don't I have a spell checker in Outlook Express? Pauline H., Dracut A: Outlook Express is the program most used to read one's email. It is included with Microsoft Windows and is usually installed on your computer. In their infinite wisdom, the developers of Outlook Express decided to use Microsoft Office for a spell checker. That's great if you have Microsoft Office installed on your computer but what if you don't have Microsoft Office? Good news! You don't have to go out and purchase Microsoft Office to have a spell checker for Outlook Express. There is a nice freeware distribution, Spell Checker For OE available at http://www.geocities.com/vampirefo. Download and install it from one of the websites listed on the developer's website. The program installs easily and works well. Interesting website: Here's an interesting site for anyone interested in expensive handbags. Www.bagborroworsteal.com offers members the opportunity to rent expensive handbags. Here's how it works. A perspective member picks one of three different memberships, trendsetter @ $19.99, princess @ $49.99, or diva @$99.99. Members choose a purse from the list for each membership level. The member keeps the purse as long as they want or can exchange it for another handbag. I can't vouch for the service but it seemed like a interesting use of a website. Who would have thought of leasing a handbag?