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  • Adding Amharic and Hebrew to the IDN wiki

    The IDN wiki was launched in October 2007 to provide a test environment of IDNs that is open and available to all interested parties. The IDNwiki was initially based on the eleven example.test domains listed on the main page (http://idn.icann.org) with articles and...
  • IPv6 was easier than I had expected

    Back in October I wrote about how my landlord provides an Internet connection with a private IPv4 address. I explained that I want to connect several devices and so I have installed my own NAT and now sit behind a “double NAT”. The only problems I’ve had have been with...
  • DNSSEC on IDN .test zones

    Yesterday ICANN began DNSSEC signing the IDN .test zones. Over the next few days, we will be testing and carefully monitoring the system. It is not expected that DNSSEC or the testing will have any effect on normal DNS operations. Any user experiences or problems or...
  • No more “Various Registries”

    Last week we improved the format of the IANA IPv4 Address Space Registry. It is now much easier to see which address space is available for allocation to RIRs and which address space is reserved for Multicast and Future Use. We made other changes, too. The IPv4 registry...
  • What does the IDN wiki give us?

    One topic that kept being misunderstood at the ICANN meeting in India was ‘what is the purpose of the IDN wiki’ – the example.test site that are actual IDN TLDs in the root. I’ll try to explain what is going on with the wiki and what it can and cannot be used for. First...
  • What will the Net bring to the developing world? OECD discussion

    ICANN is not responsible in any way for the expansion or promotion of the Internet as a network but inevitably the organisation is asked what it can do, and philosophically at least, we are dedicated to ensuring the network’s many benefits are enjoyed by as many people...
  • Participation and network issues for Delhi meeting

    As many of the remote participants have noticed, we have been having network problems at the ICANN meeting in Delhi, which is impacting remote participation. As soon as the technicians have sorted out the problem, we will come back with an explanation and update this post...
  • Conclusion of JPA: CEO’s message

    Full transcript below: Hello. My name is Paul Twomey, and I’m the President and CEO of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers — or ICANN. ICANN is an international, non-profit organization created in 1998 by the Internet community in response to a call...
  • Tips and Tricks for New Delhi

    Since the ICANN meeting starts in New Delhi, I decided to inform you about the cool places to go, while you are here. Places to see: The Friday Mosk, the President’s Palace, the old city, Humayun’s Tomb, Qutub Minar. There are many more, but these are some of the ones you...
  • When can I register domain names under IDN TLDs?

    ICANN hears this question all the time at meetings, events, in different online forums, on the idn.icann.org wiki, and in emails and phone calls. The great challenge is it the answer isn’t the specific “as of this date” answer so many people want to hear. Because of the...
  • Recovering IPv4 Address Space

    More IPv4 /8s returned to an “IANA – Reserved” status in 2007 then ever before. With help from the Regional Internet Registries, three /8s were returned in 2007 and last month we recovered one more. We now have 43 unallocated /8s. Here’s a table showing the details of the...
  • Things you didn’t realize were on the ICANN site: Part 2

    It is very inconsiderate of five-sixths of the world to fail to speak English, but then we are reliably informed that they feel pretty much the same way. And so while the Internet has done an extraordinary job of transcending physical borders, language remains a pretty...
  • Looking for Expertise in Auction Design

    ICANN announced earlier today that it is seeking expressions of interest from auction design experts (see Announcement). ICANN has identified several areas where auctions might be an appropriate tool, such as the efficient disposition of data from terminated registrars...
  • Will there really be a new Russian Internet?

    There have been some reports in the past few days about possible “division” of the Internet in Russia, tied in with speculation that the forthcoming Cyrillic domain names will be used to grant the Russian government more control over its citizens. The source of this...
  • Do you believe in Transition?

    This blog is one year old. What better way to celebrate that fact than by telling you about ICANN’s latest report card. Usually you get a report card when you transition from one grade or semester to another. This report card is all about transition too. When I say report...
  • Internationalization and Localization

    If there is one question or concern related to IDNs that have been asked continuously in the past year it has to be that of internationalizing versus localizing the domain name space. In other words, questions such as: “Well, but I don’t have a keyboard that enables me to...
  • Annual report released

    This year’s Annual Report, covering in detail ICANN’s achievements and progress over the past 12 months, has been released. You can view it as a pdf here. The report contains a full rundown of ICANN and its work, including information on its mission, values and structure;...
  • Cyber Security Is Everyone’s Business

    View Webcast Read Report [PDF, 1,372K] If you want to know about cyber security for CEOs, we have the report you need. This week the British North American Committee released “Cyber Attack: A Risk Management Primer for CEOs and Directors.” [PDF, 1,372K] ICANN CEO Paul...
  • Technical Community Networking in the Middle East

    Last month, I had the opportunity to participate in two consecutive but separate gatherings in the Middle East targeting the technical community of this region. The first was the second meeting of the Middle East Network Operators Group (MENOG), hosted by Q-tel and held...
  • Paul Twomey speech at Vint Cerf Gala event, October 2007

    Speech by ICANN CEO Paul Twomey at Gala event to Vint Cerf on Tuesday 30 October 2007 at Sony Studios, 10202 West Washington Boulevard, Culver City, Los Angeles. Welcome everybody, so glad you’re here. Hello to everybody in the far corners. Unfortunately, I’m going to be...
  • Stats on October’s deleted comments

    In the interests of openness, we have compiled statistics for the posts we have deleted from the blog last month, October 2007, broken down according to person and type of comment. Apologies for the late posting. It was only noticed that October’s post was missing when...
  • A Root with a view…

    Running a DNS server that serves the root gives an interesting view into the world of the DNS.With the ongoing improvements to the ICANN operated L-ROOT we’ve been fortunate enough to be able to make use of the “DNS Statistics Collector” tool....
  • 6 week IDNwiki report – user statistics

    The IDNwiki was released at 4.10am PDT 15 October 2007 (UTC – 7hours). Now, 6 weeks later, here are some updated user statistics and related information. As mentioned previously we will also provide a report that focuses on the initial results with the evaluation of fully...
  • There are not 13 root servers

    I am at the UN Internet Governance Forum, being held this week in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A recurring theme you can hear here is one that has vexed the technical community many times before — “Why are there 13 root servers?” This question is usually followed by questions...
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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."