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Chapter 11. Reading Newsgroups with Outl... > Tips from the Windows Pros: Newsgrou...

Tips from the Windows Pros: Newsgroups . . . for More than Just News

Newsgroups began innocently enough as forums for university, government, and science research folks to find and offer various kinds of support and share info over the precursor to the ‘Net. However, it didn’t take long for Usenet to explode as a means of online recreation. Today, no matter how obscure you think your hobby or personal interest may be, a newsgroup is probably already dedicated to it. And one of the great advantages of newsgroups is the fact that files can be easily attached to posts. Attachments can be in the form of pictures, sound files, movies, text documents, programs, or anything else imaginable. In this respect, newsgroups really shine when compared to mailing lists; most mailing lists strictly forbid attachments, but in Usenet they are welcome.

Newsgroups with the word binaries in their address are good places to find attachments. The word Binary refers to a non-text attachment, some kind of a data or program file. Naturally, you need to exercise some care before you download any messages with large attachments. First, ask yourself whether you have enough bandwidth to download the message. The OE6 message list doesn’t show a paper clip icon until you’ve downloaded a message with an attachment, but it does tell you the size of each individual message, as shown in Figure 11.14. It is a fair assumption that a large file size would indicate the presence of an attachment.


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