Internet to allow non-English addresses
The most dramatic change in the Internet in decades is set to unfold this week. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or Icann, is set to approve international domain names in scripts other than Latin letters at its meeting in Seoul, South Korea. This could open up the Web to many millions of people if addresses could be written in Arabic, Korean, Japanese, Greek, Hindi and Cyrillic scripts. More than half the world’s Internet users already work in languages based on alphabets other than Latin. Peter Dengate Thrush, chairman of the Icann board, commented, “This is the biggest change technically to the Internet since it was invented 40 years ago”. He expects the board to grant approval on Friday. Icann CEO Rod Beckstrom said, the organisation could start accepting applications for non-English domain names once the move was approved. The first entries would probably happen in mid-2010. A translation system that allows multiple scripts to be converted to the correct addresses is the core of the new development. Read more: AP
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