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Web addresses go global

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Posted by steve on July 5, 2011 at 6:36 am

The World Wide Web is certainly going through significant modification and may before long be described as a truly representative of its job description. might have have far reaching effects for both users and web design agencies.

World wide web regulator Icann has switched on a system which allows complete website addresses to contain no Latin characters, which the president (Rod Beckstrom) has referred to as “historic”.

Egypt, Saudi Arabia and also the United Arab Emirates are the initial countries to obtain so-called “country codes” coded in Arabic scripts.

This shift is actually step one to allow for net addresses in lots of languages including Thai, Tamil, and Chinese.

Upwards of twenty countries have asked for acceptance intended for worldwide domains on the internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann).

Icann has stated that the new domains are available for usage at present but did declare that there’s still some work to undertake before it’s perfected and correctly working for all. They might be formalities but with a little luck you will have no serious delay or setback.


The development of the very first world wide web sites making use of so-called country code top level domains (CCTLDs) is the finale of many years of work by the company.

Whereas before websites could use some non-Latin characters, the country codes as .cn for China had to be written in Latin script. The historic change for better means that web addresses can be totally written in local characters.

Just before too excited, Icann has warned that the internationalised domain names (IDNs) are not going to work on all PC’s right away. Exactly why exactly is uncertain but most probably is that the service will likely be implemented progressively. In so doing accomplishing this is a much simpler task to deal with.

According to Icaan, “You may see a mangled string of letters and numbers, and perhaps some percent signs or a couple of “xn--”s mixed into the address bar,” said Mr Davies. “Or it may not work at all.”

Previously, Icann has said that individuals will have to update the software on their own computers to view the domains.

“Computers never come with the complete set of fonts that will allow it to show every possible IDN in the world. Often this is fixed by downloading additional language packs for the missing languages, or specifically finding and installing fonts that support the wanted languages.”

Global Access

When Icann first announced its plans regarding non-Latin web names it said it was the “biggest change” to the world wide web “since it was invented 40 years ago”.

Perhaps this should have been rephrased as “arguably the biggest change”, especially when you consider that it is yet to be perfected. With time, that should undoubtedly expand and turn into a huge component of the world wide web however it has a way to go yet.

Mr Beckstrom has quite rightly declared that “Over half the internet users around the world don’t use a Latin-based script as their native language, IDNs are about making the internet more global and accessible for everyone.”

The influence on a web design agency is yet to be really seen. The most important adaption that is going to take place for this to become truely international change stands out as the software which is often used to publish the code for web sites. Software like Photoshop and Dreamweaver is available in various other languages, but rendering it readily available for every single non-latin script dialect around the world might be quite a job.

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