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IDN Newbies IDN domain newbie questions like What is an IDN domain, what are idners, how do you use punycode, is there a Japanese sedo etc. Since this is a new market please don't hesitate to ask questions...

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Old 16th February 2006, 05:18 PM
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I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

I have invested in domain names already for some years including some chinese (.cn) names using the english character set.
However, I have only just become aware of this thing called IDN but I'm having difficulty understanding some aspects of what they are.
For example, in which language or character system is the generic IDN registered in ?. If the IDN is resolved by unicode in the relevant language of the country that the person typing in the address is in (say www.flowers.com), is the resulting web site and all its associated pages completely translated into the relevant language no matter what that language is in ? As this seems a tall order, have I misunderstood this aspect ?

Is someone in Spitsbergen going to know that the domain name they type in belongs and is run by someone in Tasmania ?

Is there a beginner's Q&A on this forum that could help me with some of the basic elements of IDN's.
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Old 16th February 2006, 05:27 PM
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Welcome to the Forum...here is a good site full of information for those just getting into IDN's. The site is really large, and you can get Verisigns slant on IDN's here.
VERISIGN SITE
http://www.idnnow.com/index.jsp
Beneath the tabs on the right side of the site are HUGE amounts of information.
Worth a quick surf thru for what may interest you and will also give you the basics by catagory:
What is an IDN? How do I use one? Where do I buy one? How can I sell IDNs?

THEN, there is a weath of information here at IDNForums topics (over 6000 posts here). Just read along on various subjects that interest you, and feel free to post any questions as you go along.
You'll find lots of IDNers more than willing to sort it all out, although much of what is to come and how fast it will happen is still open to speculation. Again, welcome.

Last edited by bwhhisc; 16th February 2006 at 05:45 PM..
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Old 16th February 2006, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FireHorse
I have invested in domain names already for some years including some chinese (.cn) names using the english character set.
However, I have only just become aware of this thing called IDN but I'm having difficulty understanding some aspects of what they are.
For example, in which language or character system is the generic IDN registered in ?. If the IDN is resolved by unicode in the relevant language of the country that the person typing in the address is in (say www.flowers.com), is the resulting web site and all its associated pages completely translated into the relevant language no matter what that language is in ? As this seems a tall order, have I misunderstood this aspect ?

Is someone in Spitsbergen going to know that the domain name they type in belongs and is run by someone in Tasmania ?

Is there a beginner's Q&A on this forum that could help me with some of the basic elements of IDN's.
To answer your question, each IDN is registered with their punycode, being a combination of the "normal" latin characters (if they are present in the name) + basic latin character combo's to account for the "special characters, this is preceded by the "xn--" prefix which makes it possible for the DNS-servers to identify IDN's and re-direct the surfer to the correct IP.
This xn--xxxxxx code can be deciphered to unicode by the browser so that only the unicode is visible for the surfer.

Recap : "unicode" --> ciphered to "punycode" --> processed by the DNS --> deciphered to "unicode" --> displayed in browser

tráfico = xn--trfico-qta

狗 = xn--l5x
狗狗 = xn--l5xa

The url is however completely seperate from the site-contents, no automatic translations . Ad's can be language dependent or location dependent so language dependent ad's seem a logical development.
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Old 16th February 2006, 06:11 PM
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Check also idner.com that there is a small guide to start with idns
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Old 16th February 2006, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FireHorse
I have invested in domain names already for some years including some chinese (.cn) names using the english character set.
However, I have only just become aware of this thing called IDN but I'm having difficulty understanding some aspects of what they are.
For example, in which language or character system is the generic IDN registered in ?. If the IDN is resolved by unicode in the relevant language of the country that the person typing in the address is in (say www.flowers.com), is the resulting web site and all its associated pages completely translated into the relevant language no matter what that language is in ? As this seems a tall order, have I misunderstood this aspect ?

Is someone in Spitsbergen going to know that the domain name they type in belongs and is run by someone in Tasmania ?

Is there a beginner's Q&A on this forum that could help me with some of the basic elements of IDN's.
No, you have really misunderstood the whole concept. www.flowers.com will be exactly the same as it always was.

You may be unaware of it, but already much of the internet content is not in English or indeed in Latin Script i.e. abc123. Much of it already written in Japanese, Chinese, Arabic and Russian. It is not written as transliterations in Latin Script but in the actual local character sets. To those of in the west it is largely unintelligible, but that is not an issue as for most of us we will never have cause to go there and our searches on Google will never take us there. We are effectively totally unaware of what is effectively a parallel universe.

To natives of these languages, however, the pages represent as much of resource as our beloved internet does to us. The only proble that they have is that unlike us they cannot currently use internet addresses that actually mean anything to them. Some use tranliterations of the language, but this confusing as they may be as familar with abc as we are with the Arabic Alphabet. Transliterations are also very ambigious with numerous different way of transliterating the same thing. In China they have tended to use address like xnst.com or 4578.com as these can be just as easy for them to remember as Western Words.

IDN, however, will enable them to use their own script to spell out meaningfull address to access websites. Suprisingly, most people in the West seem to have great difficulty understanding why they might want to do this. Once the system is fully up and running with the release of IE 7.0, I can assure you the Chinese, Japanese, Arabs and Russian will catch on very quickly indeed.

It is has actually taken a long time to bring IDN to fruition but we are nearly. The problems have been both Political and Technical.

The first problem is that most languages originally didn't have portable fonts. With Unicode, however, given the right keyboard, most of the World's character sets can now be input.

The second problem was that many language either share characters that are both distinct or sometimes just very similar. Establishing recognised character sets and rules of useage has been a long a lengthy problem particularly in the far east. Most of that work has now, however, been complete.

The third major problem is that the Domain Name System can only cope with ASCII characters, i.e. a to z and 0 to 9 plus the hyphen. In order to use local characters, in the DNS they have to be encode into ASCII strings. This is done by your Browser (Firefox, Opera, but still not Internet Explorer without a plug-in). Once encode the IDN Domains take this form. xn--7084y3hd.com. The xn-- tells the DNS and the Browser that it is an IDN domain. The next bit is punycode, and after that the extensions which are exactly the same as domains you are familiar with, but not all registiries or registrars support them.

What you actually register is the xn--7084y3hd.com form. Your Brower will, however, transform this to and from Local Characters giving the impression that you have a domain in those Characters. Soon the dot com itself will be able to be represent in many different forms according to the users own requirements.

The point is that where the web content is not in ASCII, the ASCII domains are doomed to be replaced with IDN. To some degree it is already happening in China and Korea, but it won't really take off until there is widespread Browser support. The reason that speculation is now reaching fever pitch is that support is now very imminent indeed. Most of the guys on this form have at one time or another been very sceptically about these domains. Even Olney, who set up this form once argued strongly that they would never work. I have spent more than two years being mocked on this subject, but my detractors have now all gone to ground like wounded foxes.

Welcome to the forum. Unlike many places, hopefully you will find the folks here helpful and supportive. Don't be afraid to ask something for fear of sounding silly because we have all been there!
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Last edited by Rubber Duck; 16th February 2006 at 09:58 PM..
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Old 16th February 2006, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dwrixon
To those of in the west it is largely unintelligible, but that is not an issue as for most of us we will never have cause to go there and our searches on Google will never take us there. We are effectively totally unaware of what is effectively a parallel universe.
A Parallel Universe- That is the best description of the IDN relationship to ascii that I have heard! Great information too.
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Old 16th February 2006, 06:32 PM
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Yup, well put.
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Old 16th February 2006, 08:28 PM
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Parallel Universe Domains, Unl. (unlimited) lol....I kind of like that! I bequeth that to Big Dave if he wants it (for all his IDN's beyond the realm of his Chinese Domains Ltd.) since he thought it up first!
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Old 16th February 2006, 09:50 PM
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I've been thinking about it already as the search engine traffic for the site has steadily been increasing lately. I'll write a new blog for beginners over the weekend.
Welcome to the site...
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Old 16th February 2006, 10:37 PM
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Smile Thanks a Million!!

Thanks to everyone for your quick replies, but particularly to Dwrixon who has given me a full and clear understanding of this area plus added in some unexpected, but welcome, dry humour !

It now makes complete and 100% sense that IDN's should be here, considering the majority of the world's population do not speak English as their native language (nor do a lot of them want to either) and so having to deal with English for URL's is to them an uncessary burden and hassle they can do without.

Having had it explained to me so comprehensively, I think this is a natural and necessary development of the web and 100% essential if the WHOLE world is to benefit and not just the "first world". When you consider how many languages there are, plus all the dialects and nuances within languages, the need and potential for IDN's is immense.

I can't tell you how, in one night, my plans for future domain name investment have changed, forever.

Thank You very much!
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Old 16th February 2006, 11:28 PM
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The thing is there are so many people who can't grasp the absolute simple concept.
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Old 18th February 2006, 07:26 PM
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Re: Thanks a Million!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by FireHorse
I can't tell you how, in one night, my plans for future domain name investment have changed, forever. Thank You very much!
Although no one has said it in this thread, and not too many people here believe it....but IDNs are still considered by most "domainers" as speculative investments. I would suggest a conservative strategy to be diversifying into many languages, heaviest on Japanese and Chinese, then Russian and Korean, then a mix of the rest.

As an example of one unlikely scenerio...you could put your total investment in Chinese domains and then Chinese government might decide to "block" or charge some outlandish "registration fee" for all non-Chinese owned websites, or maybe even require you to register or have content approved to be on the site. Not that that will happen, but at last count the Chinese had 19,000+ ascii websites blocked that they don't like the content on mainly due to statements on politics or religion. You may own some fantastic adult names....and find they won't allow them displayed or are on the "forbidden list". Again, not saying this will happen, but it is still uncharted waters.

In many foreign countries, ownership of a business or enterprise must be 51% owned by a national....who knows what will happen here with IDN's doing commerce pretty much 100% in a foreign country, especially those owned by an expatriate. They very well may require any commerce by IDNs to be under their rules and guidelines, perhaps requiring a business license, etc. That could get sticky pretty quickly. Just a thought as things are still not totally clear regarding legals issues etc.

Last edited by bwhhisc; 18th February 2006 at 07:32 PM..
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Old 19th February 2006, 02:41 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

G'day all!

I am an Aussie domainer of about the last 9 months, who has only just 'discovered' IDN. D'oh!

In light of the potential of IDN's, I feel like I have blown a lot of time & money on second rate english .com's. On the other hand, IDN's still seem to be in their infancy, and there are many excellent URL's left to be grabbed.

As a newbie though, I am still a little confused about the whole punycode/ASCII question posed here by FireHorse. So, please forgive my utter noobishness, but I hope someone can kindly anser this in my own terms? Here goes:

If I register a domain like 車.com ('car' in jp/ xn--0z3a - punycode), regardless of whether I register it in it's Japanese character '車', or in punycode, I have still registered the exact same word?

It's just that I grabbed some Japanese .com's from 007domains in punycode, and they are listed in my account as punycode. I started to freak out, because I half expected to see the Japanese script listed instead.

But someone typing 車.com in Japan say, would still visit my URL, which is registered as punycode xn--0z3a?

Or to put it more succinctly, I wouldn't have to register 車.com & xn--0z3a.com both do I?

I am really sorry for the obviousness of this question guys, but I am the first to admit that I am confused here!

Cheers
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Old 19th February 2006, 02:51 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

I tried with my registrar that I buy normal domains with
They won't let me register anything starting with
xn--
It's automatically reserved for IDN domains.
The registry sites are not all 100% IDN compatible yet because before this site was up they probably had the occasional IDN domain registered compared to now where these guys are up to at least a few hundred a day.

I'd plug both into firefox or safari & see if it ends up at gthe same place.
I think your IDN is safe though.
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Old 19th February 2006, 03:04 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

Quote:
Originally Posted by seamo
G'day all!

I am an Aussie domainer of about the last 9 months, who has only just 'discovered' IDN. D'oh!

In light of the potential of IDN's, I feel like I have blown a lot of time & money on second rate english .com's. On the other hand, IDN's still seem to be in their infancy, and there are many excellent URL's left to be grabbed.

As a newbie though, I am still a little confused about the whole punycode/ASCII question posed here by FireHorse. So, please forgive my utter noobishness, but I hope someone can kindly anser this in my own terms? Here goes:

If I register a domain like 車.com ('car' in jp/ xn--0z3a - punycode), regardless of whether I register it in it's Japanese character '車', or in punycode, I have still registered the exact same word?

It's just that I grabbed some Japanese .com's from 007domains in punycode, and they are listed in my account as punycode. I started to freak out, because I half expected to see the Japanese script listed instead.

But someone typing 車.com in Japan say, would still visit my URL, which is registered as punycode xn--0z3a?

Or to put it more succinctly, I wouldn't have to register 車.com & xn--0z3a.com both do I?

I am really sorry for the obviousness of this question guys, but I am the first to admit that I am confused here!

Cheers

They're one and the same.

Punycode is a format of encoding native characters (unicode).

Domainsite do a good job of providing both unicode and their punycode equivalent of IDN in your account.
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Old 19th February 2006, 03:53 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

Thanks olney & gammascalper!

That sure is a relief!

Well, as an aside, would anyone like to give their opinion on this domain I have managed to register?

It is 漫画家.jp (punycode - xn--fctr66bbne)

It seems to translate as 'Manga artist' - or literally 'Cartoonist'

It has a Yahoo.co.jp result of 10,100,000 pages, an ovt jp score of 29,123, and 5 keyword bids searching with the ovt bid tool. It also has a Google.co.jp of 5,200,800 of pages.

What do you think guys - am I on the right track?

Cheers!
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Old 20th February 2006, 12:54 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

Hello everyone, new here too.
I can only see the IDN characters as question marks and division marks etc. So while I am in Firefox I went to "View" and then "character encoding" and then "autodetect" and then "Universal" but it didn't do anything. There are SO many options to choose from, which one do I choose?

Thanks for any help!
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Old 20th February 2006, 02:13 AM
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Re: I'm a COMPLETE beginner - please help with some basic info on IDN's

Welcome Kerrijo -

Glad to see you made it over here. I'm not exactly sure how I got the other language fonts to display but if you go to Tools in your Firefox browser, click on Options (at the bottom), click on the Advanced tab. On the bottom of the Advanced tab is Edit Languages. At the bottom drop down menu, choose all the languages you want to add.

If that doesn't do it, then go to Control Panel for Windows. Open Regional and Language Options, click on the Languages tab. Then check the two boxes at the bottom (in the Supplemental language support section). Your computer should install the necessary fonts to view most (if not all) of the languages on this forum.

-- Thinking it over, I believe the Control Panel method should work.

Correct me if I'm wrong folks.
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Old 20th February 2006, 06:43 AM
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Smile Re: Thanks a Million!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by FireHorse
I can't tell you how, in one night, my plans for future domain name investment have changed, forever.
Yes welcome to the Club, and i must say that this fourum will really help you in your new endeavor , buckle up and enjoy the ride because we are going to the top, It just make toooooooooo much sense, And my slogan is if it makes "Cents" make Dollars
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Old 20th February 2006, 11:55 AM
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Re: Thanks a Million!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by thegenius1
It just make toooooooooo much sense, And my slogan is if it makes "Cents" make Dollars
Another Genius saying! And may I add, if cents make dollars, and dollars make thousands, then thousands make millions! lol
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