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Technology@ICANN: A Landing Page for ICANN’s Technical Engagement Ecosystem

Icann technology 590x336 14mar17 en

For some time, we've heard from our technical stakeholders and participants how difficult it is for a technical person wanting to engage in ICANN to find appropriate information about ICANN's activities. Content was scattered, but users wanted a single landing page for this technical information. We heard you – and we're proud to launch:



This new portal consolidates information about ICANN's news, technical activities and other content generated by the ICANN organization and community. Technology@ICANN has four major sections:

  • Primer on the ICANN organization's key technical functions
  • Quicklinks section pointing to other technology-focused content on
  • ICANN technical blogs and news
  • @ICANNTech Twitter feed (

We need your feedback so we can keep making improvements to Technology@ICANN. We want to keep it as dynamic as possible – our goal is to meet the needs of all parts of the technical community. If you have questions, comments or suggestions, please email

This is just one part of a larger technical engagement strategy at ICANN. We will update you on other parts of the strategy in detail in an upcoming blog.


    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."