Mouser, congrats on another great review. This email client review had to be really tough since you note how important a role one's personal preferences play in the decision. You start and finish with TheBat's weaknesses, but do a great job of dissecting the program's features and strengths. I like PocoMail over TheBat, but your observation was the same as mine: damn this is a noisy, busy interface, almost like a bad cola commercial. I tone PocoMail's interface down by deleting several columns and hiding lots of stuff. A long-time friend of mine, Ken Ufford, claims to have well over 100,000 email messages inside his current TheBat v3x setup, and like you, says he's never missed a message.
There are several keen observations in this review:
(1) "...a minor difference is usability can add up to a significant inconvenience over time."
This is why developers should use their own apps. If you work in an office as a secretary and you perform the same 4-step task 100 times a day, that's 400 steps, and that gets old fast, and wastes cumulative time by the end of the day.
(2) "Someone please tell companies to stop trying to combine things like mail programs and newsreaders and rss readers...."
Have you noticed how "cleaner/privacy" apps are rapidly expanding their features and raising their prices, making several formerly solid apps more tenuous.
(3) The "Are you happy with your email" questions are good criteria for evaluating current and future email client choices.
A highly accurate list.
(4) The last line of the review is hilarious: "If I ever release a program that has an exclamation point at the end of its name, please shoot me." Add Batch It! and SnagIt! Oy.
However, methinks thou art overly kind to Thunderbird, and in closing making it seem as though it is nearly as good as TheBat in your concluding section.