Original Publication Date: 2002-Dec-06
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2002-Dec-06
This article regards the use of previewing of attachments in a traditional client/server e-mail setup. Lower speed connection users are provided with previews of their attachments so they can decide whether or not to download a full file attachment.
Disclosed is a system that is designed to ease the life of online users with slower network connections. Many individuals today still use dial up connections to retrieve their email. With the relatively high costs of broadband connections, dial up connections may be around for a while. Many times, one does not know if an attachment needs to be downloaded. The proposed system adds to the functionality of email, taking into account individuals with slower connections. The idea is for some preliminary work to be done on the mail server side. The server admin will be able to specify sizes of files that he/she considers to be "large" downloads for dialup users
(e.g., files over 350K) Now, whenever a message with a "large" attachment comes in for a user which is profiled as a dialup user (also specified by the admin), the file will have an associated preview file which is sent in place of the original, larger file. For example, for images of the TIFF, JPEG, GIF, etc., the server can make a thumbnail image of the file for the dial up user. This thumbnail image will also be a link, where when one clicks on the image, the full, uncompressed version of the image can be downloaded from the mail server. Similarly, preview files can be made for presentation files being converted into smaller thumbnails. MPEG/streaming video or voice files can either be reduced in size by changing the resolution/capture rate or only a limited portion of the MPEG/streaming v...