Email Hates the Living!

Desktop Applications, Mobile, Programming
Location: Ballroom A3/A6
Average rating: ****.
(4.60, 5 ratings)

Email: you see it every day. It’s on your desktop. It’s in your servers.
Through the magic of modern technology, it flows invisibly through the air and
into your PDA! Your cellular phone conducts silent and arcane conversations
with distant servers, speaking the ancient language of SMTP and the unknowable
dialects of IMAP. Surely all this technology means progress of mankind… or
does it?

Now you can learn the truth: buried deep within the eldrich documents
describing the slow accretion of features in the Elder Protocols lie subtle
recursions and devilish ambiguities — grammars that are not grammars, strings
quietly stripped of their higher bits — designed to slowly bend the mind of
all who implement them.

Now you can hear of the horrors perpetrated by those who became thrall to these
documents — and by those, too, who fought to oppose them for the sake of their
own dwindling sanity.

Now it can be told: Email Hates the Living!

WARNING: This talk is low in career-sustaining educational content.

Photo of Ricardo Signes

Ricardo Signes

Ricardo Signes was thrust into the job market with only a rudimentary humanities education, and was forced to learn to fend for himself. He is now a full-time Perl programmer, maintainer of the Perl Email Project, and frequent contributor to the CPAN.

Comments on this page are now closed.


Akkana Peck
07/24/2009 9:10am PDT

A strong candidate for my favorite talk this year. Very funny! And there was even useful information content, despite the warning in the abstract.

  • Intel
  • Microsoft
  • Google
  • Sun Microsystems
  • Facebook
  • Gear6
  • Kaltura
  • Liferay
  • MindTouch
  • Novell, Inc.
  • Open Invention Network
  • Rackspace Cloud
  • Schooner Information Technology
  • Silicon Mechanics
  • Symbian Foundation
  • Twilio
  • WSO2
  • Yabarana Corporation

Sponsorship Opportunities

For information on exhibition and sponsorship opportunities at the conference, contact Sharon Cordesse at

Download the OSCON Sponsor/Exhibitor Prospectus

Media Partner Opportunities

Download the Media & Promotional Partner Brochure (PDF) for information on trade opportunities with O'Reilly conferences or contact mediapartners@

Press and Media

For media-related inquiries, contact Maureen Jennings at

OSCON Newsletter

To stay abreast of conference news and to receive email notification when registration opens, please sign up for the OSCON newsletter (login required)

Contact Us

View a complete list of OSCON contacts