Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- Any thought or idea expressed briefly in a plain or secret language, prepared in a form suitable for transmission by any means of communication.
- An arbitrary amount of information whose beginning and end are defined or implied.
- Record information , a stream of data expressed in plain or encrypted language (notation) and prepared in a format specified for intended transmission by a telecommunications system.
In computing, under certain object-oriented programming languages such as Smalltalk and Objective-C, a message is an instruction to an object to perform some task. A message is similar to a member function, however in certain run-time environments such as Objective-C, messages can be forwarded if an object does not recognize — respond to — a certain message.
See also: instant messaging
History of messaging
- Smoke signals - Ancient (short distance only)
- Wind-power shipping (hence the name) "In 1800, it took 2 years to send a message from London to Calcutta. You wrote a physical letter and entrusted it to a wind-powered ship that sailed down the western coasts of Europe and Africa, around the Cape of Good Hope, back up the eastern coast of Africa, across the Arabian Sea, etc. -- with, presumably, stops in just about every port (yes, they had multi-hop message transports back then)." 
- Semaphore - Limited use
- Telegraph - (late 19th century)
- Telephone - (late 19th century-early 20th century)
- Steamshipping "By 1914, it took 1 month to send a message from London to Calcutta. The Suez Canal had opened, and steamships powered their way through the Mediterranean to the Red Sea, and thence to India. Big improvement."
- Radio, (early 20th century)
- Television - (mid 20th century)
- Airmail (1950s or 1960s?) ~ 1 week.
- Overnight mail - became popular and affordable in the 1980s, made the international messaging only two days.
- Electronic mail (~1994) - delivery times of 10 minutes, based on number of hops, frequency of manual retrieval, etc.
- Instant messaging - Message travels at average 100 milliseconds, almost always less than a second.
- "Brief history" section adapted from Peter Saint-Andre "The Need For Speed"
- Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms
- Federal Standard 1037C
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