Switched this week reports that the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is set to allow Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, Hindi, Cyrillic or Greek users create web addresses in their native character sets.
"This is the biggest change technically to the Internet since it was invented 40 years ago," Switched cites ICANN chairman Peter Dengate Thrush as saying at a press conference in Seoul, South Korea this week.
Approximately half of Internet users are native speakers of languages that do not use the Latin alphabet. If the motion is approved, we should see the first non-Roman domain names sometime in mid-2010.
Check out the full story here.
Can't wait to field questions about blank boxes in address bars!
I bet this will make it easier for China to censor the web for it's citizens. Now they can just block all URLs with western letters.
ASCII (1 byte) vs UNICODE (2 bytes)
DNS FAIL 2010!
Do you search by typing in the URL of random foreign sites and seeing if they talk about your subject or something? Or do you put a search term into google? This will change nothing. You'll google a term, and click on the link.
Now I could it getting harder to go to a foreign language site you already know about (say, pillows.gr.jp) which I visit despite not being able to read it (babelfish yay). If they change that URL to use japanese character I won't be able to just type it in. But searching will be unchanged.
No European characters? If UTF8 is used than every character of the table should be used.