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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 1st May 2009, 05:39 PM
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real world example of dubious IDN usage

You twitter users who use is.gd and bit.ly and such for URL "shorteners" will definitely need to switch to this one: http://➡.ws

This site (type in tinyarrow.ws) is built on an IDN using a character that may or may not survive. But it's cool and gives cool unicode "shortened" URLs like http://➡.ws/墂 as it's output.

I love it because:
1. it draws attention to IDN with its creative use thereof
2. it adds pressure on many popular twitter client vendors like tweetdeck to add unicode support (how can they not already have unicode??)

.
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Old 1st May 2009, 05:49 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

slight typo there: should be "tinyarro.ws" get it?

point remains: they bought IDNs to create this site, like http://⌘.ws

.
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Old 4th May 2009, 05:44 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

getting popular:

http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%E2%9E%A1.ws
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Old 4th May 2009, 10:31 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

somehow I prefer ⌘.ws, it reminds me of my favorite laptop

as in http://⌘.ws/

This is not a novelty though, it really does result in shorter URLs which is the whole point. With dozens more characters to choose from the path part of the URL can be kept shorter.
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Old 4th May 2009, 11:06 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

They could have bought a nice set of arrows in .com!
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Old 4th May 2009, 11:38 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by blastfromthepast View Post
They could have bought a nice set of arrows in .com!
I agree - to save one character in length they've gone with a marginal TLD that people forget

[OK all you Samoa fans go ahead, flame away]
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Old 4th May 2009, 11:49 PM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by blastfromthepast View Post
They could have bought a nice set of arrows in .com!
.ws shorter than .com

Their links have 6 chars ⌘.ws/

Pretty hard to achieve without idns
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Old 5th May 2009, 04:01 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Well, basing a business on URLs that probably won't resolve in a couple of years ain't such a smart play, unless their play is "the twitter world depends on these types of symbol domains, how can you stop them from working?"
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Old 5th May 2009, 04:56 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Twitter seems very appropriately named to me.

How many of you still have Yo-Yo's or Teeny Bops?

Quote:
Originally Posted by domainguru View Post
Well, basing a business on URLs that probably won't resolve in a couple of years ain't such a smart play, unless their play is "the twitter world depends on these types of symbol domains, how can you stop them from working?"
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Old 6th May 2009, 12:43 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Agree this strategy is a gamble on their part, seeing as how the conventional wisdom is that the demise of these domains is inevitable.

But I love this service because it's yet another example (as if another were needed) of IDN addressing a real-world need in this world where single-character ASCII domains are relatively scarce.


Quote:
Originally Posted by domainguru View Post
Well, basing a business on URLs that probably won't resolve in a couple of years ain't such a smart play, unless their play is "the twitter world depends on these types of symbol domains, how can you stop them from working?"
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Old 6th May 2009, 04:34 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

They don't exist at all as yet, and if and when they do nobody is going to be able to afford them just to twitter. A single character dot com will be worth tens of millions. Why Domainguru was giving away Thai single characters the other day is beyond me!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdw View Post
Agree this strategy is a gamble on their part, seeing as how the conventional wisdom is that the demise of these domains is inevitable.

But I love this service because it's yet another example (as if another were needed) of IDN addressing a real-world need in this world where single-character ASCII domains are relatively scarce.
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Old 6th May 2009, 04:48 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck View Post
They don't exist at all as yet, and if and when they do nobody is going to be able to afford them just to twitter. A single character dot com will be worth tens of millions. Why Domainguru was giving away Thai single characters the other day is beyond me!
If Thai single letters are ever worth millions, me (or more likely my son) will be the happiest bunny on the planet.
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Old 6th May 2009, 04:53 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Clearly, IDN single characters are never going to have the scarcity value that ASCII single characters do, but even Thai should be worth 6 figures within a few years.
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Old 7th May 2009, 12:14 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Hey guys-- thanks for the interesting topic. We made tinyarro.ws more as an experiment than any sort of major business endeavour. Just a fun idea that's really seen a lot of usage. People love the symbols and the ultra-short unicode URLs so far.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdw View Post
Agree this strategy is a gamble on their part, seeing as how the conventional wisdom is that the demise of these domains is inevitable.
We're hoping, of course, that existing symbol domains will be saved. Yet, it's fun either way.

Quote:
But I love this service because it's yet another example (as if another were needed) of IDN addressing a real-world need in this world where single-character ASCII domains are relatively scarce.
In this case, IDN works out great. The fact that we're redirecting to a different domain by design allows us to avoid Firefox users (and others) from seeing the punycode version of the domain in their address bar. Firefox doesn't recognize .ws as having a responsible practice for restricting characters, so it tends to show them always in punycode.

And any modern browser that supports punycode will also support unicode in the URLs, so we get the added bonus of having fewer characters in the URLs than any other shrinker can. (While not saving very many bytes overall, but that's alright.)

Anyway, it's been fun-- and we stocked-up on a few different symbol domains because people were using them a lot. We've had lots of requests for information about our "weird" domains, so it's definitely raising some awareness on IDN and apps that don't support those or unicode properly.

One thing we've done to help mitigate lack of IDN support on platforms like the iPhone: We now provide a URL that will do IDN/punycode conversions for you and redirect a user. This way application developers can just pass it through there if their platform/browser can't do the lookups themselves.

For example:
http://tinyarro.ws/idn-redirect.php?...%9E%A1.ws%2F6w

-Matthew
(one of the tinyarrows guys)
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Old 7th May 2009, 01:09 AM
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Re: real world example of dubious IDN usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyarrows View Post
And any modern browser that supports punycode will also support unicode in the URLs, so we get the added bonus of having fewer characters in the URLs than any other shrinker can. (While not saving very many bytes overall, but that's alright.)
No other way I can think of to get the url down to 6 chars

Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyarrows View Post
Anyway, it's been fun-- and we stocked-up on a few different symbol domains because people were using them a lot. We've had lots of requests for information about our "weird" domains, so it's definitely raising some awareness on IDN and apps that don't support those or unicode properly.
Why is it that twitter clients almost without exception do not support unicode? Shocking!

Also have you made any headway with any of the client apps to get your service bundled in as the builtin shortener? You'll need that to really get traction. And you'll need a nice API to get that done (if you don't have a hidden one already)
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