ICANN To Start Tests Of Non-English Domains

Next week may begin a test of non-English Internet addresses, enabling local users to create Web pages and domains. If successful, non-English top-level domains, such as ".com" or ".net", could be used by the finish of 2008. ICANN, the group charged with Internet names, said they will test domains in Arabic, Persian, simplified and traditional Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Korean, Greek, Yiddish, Hindi and Tamil.

ICANN said it will use Punycode software to translate the languages into Latin alphabetic and numeric codes understood by "root" servers which act as Internet traffic cops. If the plan is approved, the tests could begin after next week, the AP said. However, the agency will maintain a 24-hour hotline allowing the tests to shut down if problems arise.

News source: AHN Media Corp

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This will be a mistake. Some systems need a unified language. DNS is one of them.

Imagine the chaos if airports/seaports all used native tongues instead of English.

Hmm... That should probably be "non-latin domains". ;)

Domains being mostly ISO coded and not always English (South Africa -> .za, etc) makes this more being a character set / culture thing than a language thing.

But then again, I'm nitpicking.

The only problem I see with adding more letters aside from the phishing issue, is it would make it a lot harder for a foreigner to vist a site if you could use any of the character sets instead of one set one... How would I go to a hote in France if it had an accent over the e in the name? Or to a Russian site that was all in Cyrillic... makes it very hard... sure us comp people know about char map and all those fun ways around it.. but what about the average user?

Actually, it's common on many keyboards to have "dead keys".

For example, on my Swedish keyboard, I have no trouble typing an ë or ÿ or ê, etc, only by using a single extra key added to the keyboard. And we don't even have this letters in our language.

But sure, this may not apply to certain countries, like USA. I also don't know if this is common throughout Europe or just around here. *shrug*

But I hear you on the topic of Cyrillic or e.g. Arabic. This is an issue these were forced to deal with as for Latin characters a long time ago.

Jugalator said,
Actually, it's common on many keyboards to have "dead keys".

For example, on my Swedish keyboard, I have no trouble typing an ë or ÿ or ê, etc, only by using a single extra key added to the keyboard. And we don't even have this letters in our language.

But sure, this may not apply to certain countries, like USA. I also don't know if this is common throughout Europe or just around here. *shrug*

But I hear you on the topic of Cyrillic or e.g. Arabic. This is an issue these were forced to deal with as for Latin characters a long time ago. :)

Yeah I know about the "dead keys" like in MS Word Ctrl+' then an I types an í but its those languages that use script or character letters/words that are the problem

neufuse said,
Yeah I know about the "dead keys" like in MS Word Ctrl+' then an I types an í but its those languages that use script or character letters/words that are the problem

The problem still stands, most users don't know about those combinations and most US keyboards don't have dead keys capabilities, at least that are known to average users.

well it sounds good but i guess it opposes the terrorist thing, now they can make even more stranger domain names to hide stuff and no filters will be able to translate it properly

Yes, I'm sure no intelligence agencies in the world are capable of translating or understainding the terrorists native languages. All this time they've been relying on them communicating in english

n_K said,
well it sounds good but i guess it opposes the terrorist thing, now they can make even more stranger domain names to hide stuff and no filters will be able to translate it properly

Please think before you post, or avoid commenting on subjects that you know completely nothing about.