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ICANN Relocates Offices in Brussels, Los Angeles

ICANN Office in Los Angeles, California

18 June 2012 -- ICANN staff in Brussels, Belgium, and Los Angeles, California, took a break from unpacking moving boxes to share a virtual toast with colleagues in Silicon Valley, California, and Washington D.C. About 100 ICANN staff, temporary employees and contractors participated in a four-way videoconference, during which ICANN President and CEO Rod Beckstrom performed the ceremonial ribbon cutting in Brussels.

The Brussels and Los Angeles offices are two of four new ICANN facilities opened in the past two years to accommodate an increasing staff size and enhanced security and technology features. The offices in Silicon Valley and Washington D.C. opened in 2010.

The contemporary architecture of all four offices visually expresses ICANN's organizational mandate for transparency through glass office and conference room walls and floor-to-ceiling windows that allow in natural light. The new Los Angeles office is the largest, with more than 135 people working from that location. That office also includes a meeting room designed to accommodate Board of Directors' meetings on-site.

ICANN Office in Brussels, Belgium

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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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."