Raymond Tomlinson

Aimee-Nicole Torres, Community/Parent & Teachers Editor

Raymond Tomlinson, creator of the first email, died of a heart attack in his home in Lincoln Massachusetts, Saturday, March 5 at the age of 74. Tomlinson was born in Amsterdam, New York, April 23, 1941.


Tomlinson was known for creating the email back in 1971, as well as being the first to use the @ symbol for messaging to separate the sender from its domain. The @ symbol before then was commonly used in accounting, before Tomlinson decided to use it for another purpose.


“I would have never guessed the symbol was used for that [accounting],” Andrew Martinez, 11, said. “ It’s mostly used for emails and usernames now.”


Tomlinson graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute one of the oldest technological schools in the the USA. He worked at Bolt, Beranek and Newman where he worked on a project called ARPANET, Advanced Research Projects Agency Network.


He was not originally supposed to be working on creating the email, so Tomlinson kept it a secret so he would not get in trouble.


Emails do not cost anything to be sent and do not cost anything to own. They are usually used to create accounts for social media and even are asked for by teachers to keep in touch with students about assignments.


“I use emails evenly for scholastic and personal reasons, ” Cesar Larios, 10, said, “but I’d rather talk to people in person.”


Emails now are used for numerous reasons and sent from anywhere with the help of wifi. Emails are used by almost anyone with a computer, like students, teachers, parents, to keep in touch.


“Emails are more efficient than letters; you can read them anywhere,” Larios said. “You can read them anywhere: at home, on the toilet, anywhere.”


Rest in peace Raymond Tomlinson. Your breakthrough has enhanced the lives of computer users all across the globe.