Panther’s Mail: What is the Rank column for?

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
February 26th, 2004 • 12:03 am

This one is a mystery to me. By default, the Mail Viewer window in Panther’s Mail contains a number of columns, including “From”, “Date received”, “Subject”, etc.

One of these columns is called “Rank”. For some reason, however, this column cannot be turned off using the “Columns” sub-menu in Mail’s “View” menu. In other words, it is always visible. But I have no idea what it is for.

I’ve ended up moving the column to the far right, and making the columns before it big enough so that the “Rank” column is actually hidden from view. But I still would like to know what on earth it is for.

Needless to say, a search for “rank” in Mail’s Help returns “No matching help topics were found”. Strange.

9 Responses to “Panther’s Mail: What is the Rank column for?”

  1. B says:

    That column shows up when you do a search (expand the toolbar to see the search field). If you close the search by clicking the X in the search field, your columns should revert.

  2. Pierre Igot says:

    On my system, the column is visible at all times by default. But then if I do a search, and then close the search, it disappears.

    So I guess it’s just a glitch in the default settings for the Mail Viewer window. Thanks for the clarification.

  3. sdimbert says:

    Could that be the sort of “high-importance” crap that annoying, self-important people do to their outgoing email?

    BTW, I can’t find it in my copy of Address Book.

  4. Pierre Igot says:

    sdimbert, it would help if you could clarify what it is exactly that you are trying to say here :).

  5. sdimbert says:

    I get e-mail from people who use Outlook and Entourage that comes pre-labelled as “High Importance.” I figured that “Rank” might be a holder for that sort of meta-data.

  6. sdimbert says:

    I meant Mail in my original post; not Address Book. I can’t find the Rank column. Can you post a screen shot?

  7. Pierre Igot says:

    OK :). You can easily see the “Rank” column yourself. Just do a search. You’ll see it appear in the main window. The glitch is that it appears by default in the main window even when you are not doing a search.

  8. sdimbert says:

    Oh. OK.

    The Rank Column is a graphic representation of how likely that particular search result is what you’re looking for. Just like the Panther Help System uses.

    I can’t make it appear in my main Mail window.

  9. Pierre Igot says:

    In order to see the glitch, you need to get rid of your existing Mail Viewer window with customized settings. You need to revert to a Mail Viewer window that has the default settings. The problem is that there is no reliable way of doing this :).

    Yesterday, I accidentally closed my Mail Viewer window in Mail, and when I chose “New Mail Viewer Window” in the “File” menu (which shouldn’t be there, since it’s not a “file”), the new Mail Viewer window that opened had reverted to the default settings. But when I tried again today to do it deliberately, the new Mail Viewer window that opened still had my customized column settings.

    I have also had Mail revert to the default settings on occasion following an application crash.

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