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E-mail id

QUESTION: Why is the @ symbol used in an email address?

Syed G. Shahnawaz, Trichy

ANSWER 1: The e-mail address generally has two parts, user id and the domain name. The @ (at) symbol is used to separate the user id from the domain name in the e-mail address.

The e-mail address is in the form, userid@domainname.com (example : rajiv@hotmail.com).

The domain name is usually the name of the service provider and it cannot be changed. The user name can be changed by creating a new e-mail address.

Some websites like www.myownemail.com allow the users to have a domain name of their choice like rajiv@rajiv.com or rajiv@britneyspears.com or rajiv@quackquack.com or any other name on earth.

The significance of the @ symbol is that it separates the user id from the domain name.

J. Arun Ganesh, Coimbatore, T.N.

ANSWER 2: Email addresses are basically identifiers of users and are unique. They are usually composed of the following parts, namely: username@subdomain.domain. Example: rajesh_27@yahoo.com.

These addresses can be compared to the addresses of the houses in a huge colony. Examples are Hotmail, Yahoo, Sify and AOL.The domains are in turn classified as sub-domains for the sake of clarity in large organisations. Some of the top-level domains (TLD's) are

com, .edu, .net,.gov.

The `@' symbol indicates that the user can be reached on the Internet by giving the email address(also called the User's Uniform Resource Locator (URL)).

K.S. Prashanth, Trichy, T. N.

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