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RE: Extended Characters in Server Names

From: Barry Caplan <bcaplan@i18n.com>
Date: Tue, 21 Aug 2001 13:49:39 -0700
Message-Id: <5.0.2.1.2.20010821132438.054ef008@shell11.ba.best.com>
To: "Suzanne M. Topping" <stopping@bizwonk.com>, <www-international@w3.org>
At 11:46 AM 8/21/2001 -0400, Suzanne M. Topping wrote:

>In the meantime, a number of companies are registering names as
>previously mentioned, and there is a very real fear that we are heading
>away from a web that is world wide, and toward a web which is regionally
>fragmented.


>This will happen if people put systems in place without
>agreeing to abide by the standards which the WG is working toward.


While I do not think this is immediately likely to happen, it is a possible 
scenario.

But it gets worse (or just different, depending on your point of view ) -

The higher level issue is that the DNS root servers are centrally 
controlled.  There are about 7 (I forget the exact number) DNS servers 
responsible for the top level domains on the entire internet.

There is a case to be made that perhaps the TLDs should not be centrally 
controlled at all. In this scenario, anyone with the proper resources to 
manage it can create a TLD.

The big issue in this case, is unless the end user such as you or me points 
to a DNS server which knows about the root for the "independent" TLD, then 
you would not be able to access any subdomains in that TLD (including 
sending email to!).

The scenario further posits that the free market should determine whether 
or not which DNS servers will know about which TLDs.

So in a way, (skipping several steps of description here....) this could 
lead to a regional split - perhaps China (for example) could enforce access 
to certain TLDs only by making sure (via firewall) that inside-the-firewall 
users could only access certain DNS servers. These servers would then be 
free to implement any TLDs they want, and any encoding scheme they want 
too. What prevents this from happening now is that all DNS servers serve up 
the same distributed database (with the exception of very recent updates 
for a brief amount of time that it takes to distribute them of course).

This is a gloomy scenario - I could paint rosy ones too. It is clear why 
DNS evolved in the way that it did. But Still, it is a fair question to ask 
and discuss now if it should remain under central control when it is 
bursting at the encoding, the TLD access, and the IP address limitation seams.

Barry Caplan
Received on Tuesday, 21 August 2001 16:55:54 GMT

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