Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Are you kidding me?

From Single-letter domains might earn seven figures:
Single-letter names under ".com," ".net" and ".org" were set aside in 1993 as engineers grew concerned about their ability to meet the expected explosion in demand for domain names. They weren't sure then whether a single database of names could hold millions -- more than 40 million in the case of ".com" today.

One idea was to create a mechanism for splitting a single database into 26 -- one corresponding to each letter. So instead of storing the domain name for The Associated Press under ".org," it would go under "a.org." In other words, "ap.org" would become "ap.a.org."

Now, engineers have concluded that won't be necessary. They have seen the address database grow to hold millions of names without trouble, so they are now willing to let go of the single-letter names they had reserved.

Are you kidding me?!

If you wanted to "[split] the database into 26 -- one corresponding to each letter" you wouldn't need to change any TLD's to do it. The same mechanism that would direct *.a.org to the "a.org database" could send any *.org that starts in a to the "a database"! Parsing the name to figure out that it has an "a.org" in it is just as computationally difficult as figuring out if its domain name starts with an a!

So maybe I'm overreacting, but I think that article is pretty darn silly. Letting newspaper writers write about technology in popular news is exactly like letting the blind lead the blind.

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