That brings me to the kitchen sink. If an application has every possible feature in it but the kitchen sink, will anyone still use it? Here’s the tale of a very good app based on a very good idea that seems to do everything except wash dishes.
‘You Can Still Get That App?’
Much to my surprise, Mozilla launched an updated version of the cross platform Thunderbird email application.
Seriously. I thought Thunderbird was put to rest a few years ago. What I found out after digging around is that the model to manage Thunderbird changed.
Instead of Mozilla, the folks who manage the Firefox browser, Thunderbird gets new features from a loose coalition of the free software and and open source community.
If Apple’s built-in Mail.app for OS X gives you the heebie jeebies, Thunderbird might– I say, might— be a good alternative. If there’s a Mac email app that has more features than Thunderbird, I’ve never seen it or used it.
Features is what Thunderbird is all about. Set up email accounts in the Setup Wizard. Manage email messages using tabs (Hello! Apple! Tabs are good.). Send messages in text or HTML and view attachments in the message.
Grab a few add-ons and themes and Thunderbird can even look and feel like Mail.app (not that there’s anything wrong with that.
The Kitchen Sink
That brings me to the non-standard feature list in Thunderbird. Yes, you can use Thunderbird to chat– Facebook chat, Google Talk, Twitter, IRC, and others.
Instead of searching the web for add-ons, Thunderbird gives you an Add-ons Manager to find and install extra functions.
Thunderbird may be for the Mac user with more email than anyone should have, but who refuses to throw any email message in the trash. So, there are built in search and filter options, and a Message Archive, plus folder management. There’s also a junk mail filter, as well as options to protect security and avoid Phishing attempts.
I’ve always found the Mac version of Thunderbird to be too much like the Windows version (not ‘Mac-like’ enough), and cluttered with tools and options. That hasn’t changed in this update. Thunderbird is capable, yes, and has many features you won’t find in Apple’s Mail.app, but there’s a reason feature development has slowed in Thunderbird in recent years.
Every feature you can imagine is probably already in there. I wouldn’t be surprised to find a kitchen sink icon somewhere.