What is it about The Bat that so many people are willing to make excuses for it and its dev team, while at the same time leveling criticisms for the exact same things on its competitors?
I just don't get that part.
Where The Bat really gets things right, it gets them very right indeed. The "Sorting Office" is brilliant -- you need something like the Nostalgy addon to even get close with Thunderbird.
I don't actually know that The Bat was written by people who started out in FidoNet (where my first serious exposure to proper electronic messaging happened) but it feels like it. FidoNet, because the transport and storage costs were borne by ordinary home users with modems, took an economical approach to messages that Internet email never bothered to learn -- because somebody else was paying the bill. So emails quote everything the last guy wrote and everything you wrote to him the time before and so on and nobody cares because moving a 200k email costs the same as moving a 5k email.
[Yes, the old fart's grumbling again. Nothing to see here, move along.]
Er, anyway, The Bat supports proper quoting and makes selective editing of quotes (and their reformatting) simple and straightforward, which leads to a conversational view of emails that makes sense of the concept in a way that the current fad for "call every email with the same subject and between the same two people a conversation" doesn't -- in the sense that the former leads to communication where the latter requires research and time and re-reading irrelevances to get to the important bits.
It's a losing battle: for one thing, both sides of the conversation have to cooperate and work the same way, and people are lazy. But I can't make Thunderbird do proper quoting, Outlook has never really supported it, anything that has its roots in *nix doesn't quite get it either (the likes of Mulberry, say) I haven't worked out whether PostBox will (only, I suspect, if an old and no-longer-compatible Thunderbird addon is available for it) and I can only carry on promoting the Cause Of Economical And Communicative Email if I can swallow my concerns and go back to The Bat!
If I'm honest, I think there's never EVER really been a good email client. While databases are at the core of most if not all client email solutions, and while database management systems remain non-bulletproof, there probably never will be.