Mozilla Ready to Navigate to Internationalised Domain Names

Monday March 8th, 2004

A week ago, the German registry for .de names started accepting applications for internationalised domain names (IDNs), which can feature characters such as umlauted letters. Germany's DENIC follows in the footsteps of registries such as the Japan Registry Service, which has been operating IDNs since last July.

chofmann writes: "Recent Mozilla milestone releases have the support needed to support these domain names thanks to the efforts of Katsuhiko 'Kat' Momoi and others that worked towards getting this support integrated in advance of the rollout."

Meanwhile, Marcel van Beurden pointed us towards DENIC's page of browsers that support IDNs, noting that the first half of the list is made up entirely of Mozilla-based programs. Microsoft Internet Explorer requires a third-party add-on such as VeriSign's i-Nav to understand IDNs.

#18 Re: Re: Re: Potential problems

by jgraham

Tuesday March 9th, 2004 3:28 PM

You are replying to this message

Sure. It makes an existing problem slightly worse (I hope you agree this problem *does* already exist). But I consider it more important that people be allowed to use their local character-set for domain names. It's a pretty sucky situation if you're trying to set up a website for your business and have to explain to your customers that they have to use some bastardised ASCII form of the company name to access your site, especially given that all the missing characters are right there on their keyboard.

The point is that there is nothing intrinsically special about US-ASCII that isn't historical. If the standard language for computing was Thai rather than English, you wouldn't be complaining about internationalising the domain name system. The problems exist already and can be solved (e.g. by displaying all characters outside the local character set in escaped form in the URL bar).