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Subject: [email protected]

Monday, 7 March, 2016

It was Ray Tomlinson who implemented the first email system on the ARPANET, the precursor of the internet, and it was Ray Tomlinson who decided on the @ symbol for use in email addresses. He died on Saturday aged 74. This snippet from the “Official Biography of Raymond Tomlinson” at the Internet Hall of Fame puts his ingenuity in context:

“Tomlinson’s email program brought about a complete revolution, fundamentally changing the way people communicate, including the way businesses, from huge corporations to tiny mom-and-pop shops, operate and the way millions of people shop, bank, and keep in touch with friends and family, whether they are across town or across oceans. Today, tens of millions of email-enabled devices are in use every day. Email remains the most popular application, with over a billion and a half users spanning the globe and communicating across the traditional barriers of time and space.”

Ray Tomlinson was a hero of the Digital Age.


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