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ICANN Posts Initial Operating Plan and Budget Framework for Fiscal Year 2009

The Initial Operating Plan and Budget Framework [PDF, 904K] kicks off the operational planning process for ICANN, providing the community with a first look at planned work and costs for fiscal year 2009. The planning approach this year accelerates the date when information is available to the community, and extends the review period, so the community has the maximum opportunity to provide input and help mold the fiscal year 2009 budget.

Some new characteristics of this year's approach to planning include:

  • Review of the operating plan activities and anticipated expenses at the same time (in the past, done separately).
  • A three-year budget model for ICANN, to better put fiscal year 2009 into perspective. Again, the three-year budget model points out the criticality of reaching community consensus on many of the questions/assumptions still to be addressed for new gTLDs.
  • A structured presentation of operating plan activities that both allows for summarization, thus making it more accessible and tractable, while still providing adequate detail in areas in which various community members have specific interest.

The Initial Operating Plan and Budget Framework will be reviewed in a public workshop in Delhi, and kicks off a five month long consultation with the community leading up to anticipated adoption of a budget by ICANN's board in June.

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Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."