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Cracking the Verisign Monopoly 140

Posted by michael
from the uphill-battles dept.
ag writes: "Paul Garrin is on a crusade to break the U.S. stranglehold on the Web. Access to the "root zone," the master file listing the so-called top-level domains--.com, .org, .net, .gov, .edu, .mil--and some 244 country-code domains, is currently in the hands of the privileged few. Through Name.Space, his own root server, Garrin is hoping to 'reterritorialize the Net, bringing it back to its original ideal of virtual space without borders or hierarchies.'" The article brings out the conflicts between Name.Space and the Open Root Server Confederation.
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Cracking the Verisign Monopoly

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Actually, search engines could be the bridge that makes alternative DNS catch on.

    Consider: a major search engine decides to also parse through sites listed via the alternate DNS server in addition to the traditional ones. Search results would then link to the site by IP instead of name (and maybe display a teeny icon indicating its presence on the other DNS system). Thus, the sites would still be searchable and useable, while at the same time spreading word of the new DNS system's existance.

    The only catch is that there'd have to be enough sites on the new system to make it worthwhile for the search engine. But that threshold is a lot easier to reach than the one for a major ISP.

  • by jbarr (2233)
    While I am all for innovation, this will just complicate matters more. Currently, if I see or hear of a product advertized somewhere, the odds are pretty good that I can guess companyname.com, and I typically get a hit. It's not perfect, but it works more often than not. With this new scheme, I will have to rely soley on a search engine because the relative "intuitivness" if current dot-com names will be blown out the door.

    Additionally, if I was a business, I would have to register a ton of new domain names because of the lack of intuitivness. It just seems like a way for this guy to make tons of money at everyone's expense.

    What we need is a few more TLD's, not hundreds more!
  • The concept of the internet included that it should not have a single point of failure. It has grown to a point that it clearly now has a single point of failure i.e. the US. I do not think that this idea will change a lot. It is just one guys idea to take control from one group and give it to another. If the problem is to be tackled we need a system whereby each region is self dependant and connected to each other region by a common infrastructure, i.e. an enlargement of the original concept.

    Most US users see .com and .org as US TLDs and have never heard of .us. The whole system has been bastardised and cannot be brought into line by people whose own self interest is part of the problem. The system does need to change and there needs to be a regional control as well as international TLDs (i.e. .com and .org). The problem comes from getting those that have already entrenched themselves in the old ways, to change.
  • it is a provable theorem of computer science that all systems have at least one single point of failure.

    Unfortunately, a google search for "all systems" and "single point of failure" did not lead me to such a theorem; simply to a bunch of marketing guys contradicting it.

    And since I can think of dozens of mechanical and electrical systems without a single point of failure, I'd appreciate a link to more information about why this is impossible in computer science.
  • So all we really need to do to use this "alternate root" is to add "xs2.net" to our list of domain suffixes to search.
  • That's very silly, because TLDs aren't allowed to start with a digit. This is meant to ensure that domain names are distinguishable from numeric addresses. (Obviously you can't have '2000' in a numeric address. But the rule for distinguishing names and numeric addresses needs to be easy to apply.) These people are fuckwits.
  • Ick:

    Subject: Important Information: .BIZ .INFO Domain Extensions

    The new top level domain names with extensions .BIZ, .INFO, .PRO, and .NAME have just been approved by global internet authorities and will be released soon, but don't wait until then to register. These domains are available NOW for pre-registration at: http://www.[deleted].net on a first come, first serve basis.

    Yeah, so now I have a dilemma. Do I throw some money at these people and get a groovy .biz URL, or do I give it to this hippie guy who wants to heal the world with domain names? Or do I just think how lame and petty the net is getting and go back to publishing stuff on paper...

    Baz

  • Because you haven't shopped around?

    http://www.freeparking.co.uk/

    " Nominet Domains (.co.uk, .org.uk) now only £9.99 for 2 years .com,.net & .org from only £11.99 per year!"

    So how come registering a .com costs so much more then registering a .co.uk?
  • What I don't want is to hear any more commercials with the words dot com in them ever again. Come to think of it I'd rather never hear the phrase ever again under any circumstances.
  • People want .com. They don't want country codes, and they don't want the other minor ones.

    That's simply not true (with the possible exception of ".us"). The local CCTLD is the number one choice in most places I know.

    Additionally, people want a good domain name or a generic one. As nobody is going to try to guess these random TLDs and assume that their ISP supports it, this names provide no value.

    I disagree. Why shouldn't a domain name like "slash.dot" be valuable? In a system with 'free' gTLDs we could move to a situation where you wouldn't have to add ".com" to a company's name to find it, but simply type its name into the Location:-bar. I don't see why that couldn't work.

    Did you know that there are companies who specialize in registering your name in as many of the approx. 250 existing gTLD's as possible? This is happening on a big scale, and is quickly rendering gTLDs useless as they no longer satisfy their goal of data distribution.

    So why not just get rid of them?

  • by jjr (6873) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @02:53AM (#316221) Homepage
    This man wants to stir things up. Got to love it. But he is not the only one doing somethng like this. The only problem if there is not a centralize operation we will just end up with a islands of domains that can not see each other. He needs to break and join the system at the same time in order for this to work right. I wish him all the luck in the world.
  • by XNormal (8617) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:04AM (#316222) Homepage
    What makes them think that I would trade one centralized and corrupt organization managing the root zone for another centralized and corrupt organization? Even if one of those alternative roots somehow magically gets very widespread support and all ISPs add it to their root zone files it will undoubtedly become at least as bad than the current situation.

    An observation by Douglas Adams:

    "The major problem - one of the major problems, for there are several - one of the many major problems with governing people is that of whom you get to do it; or rather of who manages to get people to let them do it to them. To summarize: it is a well known fact, that those people who most want to rule people are, ipso facto, those least suited to do it. To summarize the summary: anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job. To summarize the summary of the summary: people are a problem."

    -
  • Actually, a fair amount of this IS available via DNS, at least in theory; it's just that noone actually uses it or provides a usable interface to it in practice. From RFC1034, one of the design goals for DNS is:
    - The costs of implementing such a facility dictate that it be generally useful, and not restricted to a single application. We should be able to use names to retrieve host addresses, mailbox data, and other as yet undetermined information. All data associated with a name is tagged with a type, and queries can be limited to a single type.
    Currently defined types of DNS records include:
    • A - host addresses (which you refer to)
    • HINFO - host description (CPU, OS, etc)
    • MX,MB,MD,MF,MG,MINFO,MR - mail handling instructions for a host
    • NULL - can carry arbitrary data
    • TXT - can carry arbitrary text; "The semantics of the text depends on the domain where it is found." (RFC1035, 3.3.14)
    • WKS - specify available well-known-services (i.e., SMTP, HTTP, Gopher, telnet...)

    As for the second paragraph of your rant, if you want to be able to immediately edit your domain files, then get a dedicated line or lease a dedicated server and host them yourself. Noone's stopping you. As long as the world can get to your domain through the TLD system, you can do whatever you like within it.

  • Still, this seems unlikely. People want .com. They don't want country codes, and they don't want the other minor ones.
    I don't want .com (et al.). I used to have a country code (it was *FREE* until this year), but the morons-in-"charge" "opened" it to "competition", and it would have cost me at lear $50 to get back my country code.

    Fortunately, I was able to get a .org (et al.) for only $11 there [gandi.net]. I still miss my country code, just because the .com (et al.) really needlessly obfuscates the Internet beyond reason.

    --


  • You pay that much for domains?

    Well, they do say that a fool and his money are easily-parted...


    D.


  • The .uk domain is administrated by Nominet [www.nic.uk], a not-for-profit organisation, whose membership is open to "any person or organisation with an interest in the Internet". Effectively, it's a kind of co-op and the most active (and, therefore, the most influential) members of this particular co-op are it's biggest customers - the ISPs who register *.uk domains.

    Nominet is a monopoly, in that it has exclusive control over the .uk TLD, but few complain about this, because it is largely run by and for the benefit of it's customers.

    Furthermore, the oversight inherent in an organisation with open membership and the competition between those ISPs in the marketplace ensure that Nominet's actions benefit all UK Internet users.

    This is how all TLDs should be administrated - for the common good, instead of for the profit of the company who won the contract.

    And, incidentally, this is how ICANN should be run, too.


    D.

  • So the search engine converts all urls to:

    http://server.aol.newtlds.com/index.html

    Where newtlds.com is the "oldspace" root - yes
    it means that each vhost needs a line:

    ServerAlias server.aol server.aol.newtlds.com

    But that's probably the safest compatibility hack. In fact combine this with a /etc/resolv.conf entry with

    search newtlds.com

    on your squid proxy box, and you don't even need to fix the clients for pure web stuff - just point them through the proxy!

  • Communism is NOT about control - that is Fascism - and usually Americans confuse the two. Communism promotes Democracy. Communism does not require nor desire Fascism.

    Politics: Democracy, Fascism
    Economics: Communism, Capitalism.

    To be honest, Capitalism more closely aligns with Fascism.

    Right up to there, you had a pretty good analysis. Mr. Garrin's motivations do seem to be to collect a chuck of the pie for himself, using something he built and can get other people to pay for. That's pretty capitalist.

    Your two lines about the differing systems in politics and economics is very simplistic, but generally correct (there are *lots* of shades of gray in-between, but that doesn't really matter).

    However, when you say that capitalism better lines up with fascist politics, you're wrong. The choices in econimics are between political control of the economy (communism, socialism, etc.) and private control of the economy, with political action limited to enforcing basic rules and adjudicating contract disputes (capitalism). Political control of the economy requires a police state, because otherwise most people won't cooperate enough for it to work. Democratic politics doesn't require people voting money and control out of each others hands.

  • That's also a good reason that I hadn't thought of and that didn't come through in the article. The given reason of "to support domain names with Chinese characters" would still be reason enough, I would think.

  • I use that one every day. In fact, if you just click on the Netscape Search button, on the page that this takes you to you can pick which search engine to use for this feature. So I always have a Google search built into my NS 4.x browser.

    The only problem is that if I search for words that end with "com" or "net", Netscape thinks it's an actual domain name and tries to go to that site rather than searching. Or at least it used to, when I tried it just now with 4.75 it searched correctly.

    Now we just need search engines to index enough and rank things appropriately enough for me to find what I want quickly. Google's the best of a bad lot, so far.

  • I agree that search engines are the key - if you can get search engines to start returning results from alternate DNS, and if there's something there that people want to see, and if it can be made easy enough for people to update their network settings to do so (on the order of "lynx -source http://go-gnome.com/ | sh" for example, or maybe just "click here and then select OK when Windows asks if you want to update your settings") then there will be a mass movement to alternate DNS. In the long run I don't see DNS being that useful for finding things on the 'net anyway, though. It's never been a foolproof plan to just type in widget.com and get WidgetCo, and it's getting tougher and tougher as more similar domain names are registered (two that I find difficult to get right: Loki games and Mandrake Linux).

    It would be far better to use a collaborative net of search engines to query for stuff, like a combination of hopped-up Google rankings and those ghastly "AOL keywords". Really, just finding the right domain doesn't help you find stuff anyway, as anyone who's tried to find technical documentation on a product's web site and instead found marketing crap can tell you. Since we'll have to depend on search engines anyway, why not just cut out the DNS middleman? This would require a vast advance in search engine ability, but I think that might be possible in the fairly near future.

    Plus, then you could have a neat feature in a web browser where you select some words, right click, and select "search for this" (or "I feel lucky!").

    Come to think of it, to really make this work a search engine would almost have to be run distributed.net style. No single big search engine comes close to indexing the web, but if I've got a great collection of Linux USB links (just for example), maybe my computer could share those with Google from time to time. If my machine had a semi-autonomous agent or spider that was constantly searching for my interests on the web, and I sync this info with Google from time to time, then Google stays up to date better, more of the web gets indexed, and anyone else can benefit from my contribution to the whole. The more I think about this the more I think it's a good idea.

    I also found it interesting that China has broken free of ICANN too. That may have the biggest long-term effect - once all of those people are online there will have to be a way to access their part of the network, or else the world's networks will be effectively partitioned in half (at least from a DNS standpoint). With all of the U.S. business interest in China, this may have been the unkindest cut that ICANN's received yet.

  • Bah, who wants to be user@foo.bar.city.zz.us?

    I'm tempted to do it because it's free, but I'd never want it as a replacement for my existing .com registration. Ickyfoo.

  • An alternative to using a geographical hierarchy might be to use families. For example, I've been thinking of registering a domain for my family, but it's already taken and I don't have enough resources to set up a mailserver anyway.

    So is the problem that you lack resources to run a mailserver on your familyname domain or is the problem that you can't think of another name or variant? Like detroitzapfs or michzapfs or whatever.


    On the same note, notice that I don't have my own domain for my website. I don't need my own stinking domain. What's wrong with being identified as a member of some larger organization?

    It's about control and identity. I don't want to be known as or controlled like a subidentity. The other major flaw with regional designations (or should I say the .us domain), is lack of geographic portability.

    Say my root domain name is foo.minneapolis.mn.us and I move the grand total of 1 block it would take to put me in another city? Do I have to screw around with the known-as-slow .us people to re-register my "new" domain name in foo.richfield.mn.us ? That micromanaged lack of portability kind of stinks.

    I'd go for being foo.org.us or something else, but the librarian-esque level of specificity in US is rather idiotic. Why not just use X.500 then?
  • Getting ISPs in on it, is the one and only way to overthrow ICANN.

    The current root monopoly is not due to millions of internet users pointing to ICANN's servers. 99.99% of those millions don't run any resolver (e.g. dnscache, bind) at all, and never directly talk to the root servers. They just use their ISP's recursive resolver, and the people at the ISP are the ones who decide which root to use.

    Change the ISPs, and you change the users.

    I think your idea is great. Getting someone like AOL interested in their own tld would be a good thing. They would want to add it, ICANN would not let them, so they'de join OpenNic or something. Then, suddenly, a few million internet users would be using a new root.


    ---
  • For some purposes I don't care what country I'm dealing with. For some I care which city I'm dealing with (well... usually which metropolitan area). For some which state will do.

    If I order something, Cheapbytes is one day away by mail, but LinuxCentral is 5 days. That counts. And if the merchandise were coming from Europe or Japan, time delays would be longer still (though I am usually warned of this by currency conversions).

    *.com is nice for pure information exchanges, but for other things, localization would be better.

    Caution: Now approaching the (technological) singularity.
  • You don't want a central point of control. This is a bad idea that needs to be designed around. I don't know what the answer is, but perhaps something analogous to ethernet's CSMACD could be worked out. And I don't see any reason why a sizeable chunk of the namespace shouldn't be allocated more or less locally. (Some more, some less.)

    The thing is, this would require agreed upon standards. Perhaps one of the existing standards could be modified to fit, but it would need to be fitted into place and then agreed upon. Possibly not by everybody, but by enough.

    Perhaps there could be a system allowing local caching of name-tcp/ip address pairs. Then no centralized dns would need to decode them. The top-level servers could mainly keep track of whether or not somebody had claimed some particular address (with some provision to keep horders from being successful...probably an aging cache system). This would allow each local net to operate independantly of the main net, though it would be important to resync periodically so that address collisions could be avoided ... though even then, as the address would be resolved as locally as possible, this would merely cause the later entrant to only be available locally, and to locally block the main cache's entrant. So some analog to dhcp would need to reallocate the local names to avoid collisions, though cache aging might cause this to take awhile ... say a few weeks, maybe a month or two (we wouldn't want the cache entries to age too quickly), and if a new service is blocked from a local market for a few months, no real harm is done. There could even be a method to provide the global entity with a local alias while the cache was aging.

    It seems to me that this would provide a locally structured net that would hierarchicly adapt to name clashes via resyncs and cache aging. Lots of details are vague, but the idea is that there is no central point of control needed. The top-level nodes can assign addresses via a CSMACD like protocol. It might take a few minutes, but that's certainly no problem. It would, however, limit the total size of the net. Anything much larger than the earth-moon system would probably induce undesireable time delays in the address assignment process. So some technique would need to be developed to allow temporary addresses to be allocated while the permanent address was being negotiated. And THAT should be no big problem.

    Caution: Now approaching the (technological) singularity.
  • I think he misinterpreted Godel Escher Bach's bit about records that can't be played on given record players.

    --

  • Ideologically, yes. The whole point of domains is supposed to be so people don't have to remember IP addresses; it's supposed to reflect organisational and network topology.

    It currently does not, and is primarily used as a 'web lookup service' and as a flat database (yes it's heirarchial, but few use it).

    I'm a proponent of independent lookup systems for filing information/websites, and leave DNS to do what it's good at.

    Should all those companies that have paid registration fees have their domains taken away? No... not immediately, but no new registrations should be handed out, and none should be allowed to renew. It should be phased out. They didn't buy domains; they paid registration fees for someone to put an entry in a database.

    Whether it's geographic, or some new system, I maintain it has to stay heirarchial, that's how it was designed.
  • But that's the point, exactly.

    Web URL's should be using a lookup service other than DNS, if simplicity is what we're after.

    slashdot.andover.ma.us is *perfect*. It tells me where a machine is.... it's great. That's what dns was designed for...
  • by mindstrm (20013) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @04:37AM (#316241)
    Though I have yet to see a solution to the problem, we all know (or should know) the problem exists.

    It used to be that all the ccTLD's and such were not paying 'fees' to have their domains, they just had them. THey administered them as they saw fit. .com was for commercial, .net for network providers, and .org for organisations that don't fit into the other two. .gov for US Government sites, and .MIL for us military sites. .edu for official US educational insitutes.

    Yes, this is because the root servers were sponsored by the american taxpayers.

    Now.. the thing is, in this world, if you control something, you can make money off it. As long as this system is privatised, it will be run as a cash cow, period. What wee need is an international taxpayer-funded coop, so that big business can't get involved. We need to do away with *all* generic TLD's, and get back to ccTLD's.
  • I've tried convincing Americans about this too. Give it a break, most Amerians just dont get it. Their cultural biases sit too deep. McCarthyism is one of the most successful PR campaigns ever.

    -henrik

  • Actually the author of that article has no affiliation with any alternative root system at all. Your claim is absolutely baseless. Besides, calling what Garrin and his group have done as quality and imaginative is a gross overstatement. Their own dns servers continue to be misconfigured and prone to errors. They tried to sue their way into the main roots, in order to give themselves a goldmine. They failed. Their politics have been as bad as the rest of their operation.
  • This coverage [icannwatch.com] of the same story presents why Paul Garrin's efforts aren't productive or well respected.

  • At this point I won't be converting. In order to access a Name.Space server, you have to download an app to use it.

    What platforms is it available for you might ask?

    Windows and Mac only.

    --
    Give a man a match, you keep him warm for an evening.

  • You are solving the wrong problem. The problem is not technical. A single zone will scale to millions of entries: the .com zone is an existance proof of that. The problem is political: NSI has too much political power.
    -russ
  • by ajs (35943) <ajs@@@ajs...com> on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @05:45AM (#316247) Homepage Journal
    Since I just did this, here's what you can do to get name.space's domains set up where you are:
    cd /var/named
    wget http://namespace.org/admin/root.zone
    Now remove the zone entry from /etc/named.conf for "." and replace it with:
    zone "." {
    type master;
    file "root.zone";
    };

    Now, you just restart your named and try pinging name.space!
  • HEre in the UK many companies want them a) to avoid the stigma of a dot.com address - in the current environment and b) for sound marketing reasons. If Im looking for a car to buy in the UK, which is the better bet: www.cheapcars.com or www.cheapcars.co.uk?

    More to the point any company selling something has an identity in the real world. Customers want companies they can contact other ways without such things as international phone calls or issues of legal jurisdiction if things go wrong.
  • Another thing about .uk is that they are doing the RIGHT thing. If .us was reorganized, you could put most of the .com's in .com.us, and stop forcing the rest of the world to put up with 100% All American BS.

    There is also a set of second level domains for US states. Doing this would also eliminate .edu .gov and .mil
  • But as long as name.city.state.us is enforced as the only legit use of t he .us domain, it's probably remain that way.

    So how do you change it in such a way that say some company which only trades in Manhatten can't get mom-pop.us, instead of mom-pop.ny.ny.us, nationally known company isn't forced to have big-co.ny.ny.us just because they happen to have their head office there.
    The US has the concept of hierachical government, does it also have the concept of hierachical incorporation?
  • HTML and HTTP were created at the expense of the European Union.

    No they where created at CERN an international organisation based in the highly independant Switzerland.
  • >simply type its name into the Location:-bar.
    >I don't see why that couldn't work

    It wouldn't work because how many companies all over the world have the same name? Granted it could be handled the same was as now (companyname.com is taking by 1 company and the rest are screwed) - or we go on to use the CCTLD's so that at least 1 company per country could have the name.
  • by Bazzargh (39195) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @04:47AM (#316253)
    The internet (IP protocol) has _never_ had a single point of failure (or at least, not for a long time now). DNS has _always_ had a single point of failure, and via the TLDs, a single point of control (which is why its become a cash cow for Verisign).

    If you want a different model, look at freenet, where there is an essentially flat namespace, and required information gets cached near to folk who request it (much as DNS caches do). However, being fully distributed means that there is no longer an 'authority' to ensure this 'freeDNS' hasn't been poisoned. You then end up looking at scalable trust management architectures (SPKI, SDSI?) to ensure that you can still trust the DNS info.

    Theres some discussion of systems like this here: http://www.advogato.org/article/188.html

    I can't see distributed DNS getting anywhere now as Verisign would be able to claim IETF were preventing them from doing business.

    -Baz
  • So we take the root space away from one group and hand it to someone else. I fail to see any change other than the fact that he has about five bazillion tld's available (Or gTLD's, whatever). Sounds to me like he just wants to stir up trouble more than anything, or he has his eyes set on the distant distant future, this isn't something that big bussiness is going to adopt, anytime soon, if ever. Massive fast spaced change just doesn't happen, otherwise dos legacy support would have been gone a decade ago.
  • So how come registering a .co.uk costs so much more than registering a .com?
  • Give them a TLD, and tell them to point at your new root servers. There's your critical mass, in one fell swoop.

    Once there's a .aol TLD, and every AOL subscriber can refer to every other AOL subscriber as luserName@aol, then you know there's going to be an immediate rush for .earthlink, .demon, .panix, .msn, .psi, .uunet, and so on.

    -jcr
  • by 1010011010 (53039) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @04:30AM (#316257) Homepage
    Most US users see .com and .org as US TLDs and have never heard of .us.

    Well, that's at least in part because the .us domain is administered very poorly. Network Solutions "runs" it, and they quite simply don't give a shit about it. Their turn-around time is six weeks per email request.

    Plus, the .US domain has a rigid heirarchy forced onto it, where than smallest domain name available to a business is something like eds-paint-shop.ithaca.ny.us ... plus, the .us domain is required to be run for free. Not just non-profit, but free. You have to delegate to anyone who wants a domain, at no charge. I'm not opposed to this on a personal level (as a .us domain registrar), but it does remove any profit motive. Also, if they allowed shorter domains, like "eds-paint.com.us" as other countries do, it might be more popular.

    Plus, the Internet began in the U.S., so people have grown accustomed to it being an American network. Our federal government uses .gov, not .gov.us, etc. Not ideal, but historical.

    But as long as name.city.state.us is enforced as the only legit use of t he .us domain, it's probably remain that way.

    - - - - -
  • The majority of the world runs with IPv4 which is well suited to control by a few institutions.

    Such a limited namespace as provided by IPv4 allows control of the few domains (.com, .org, .net, etc.) to be easily controlled by one company, Verisign.

    With the greatly expanded namespace provided by IPv6 (2^128 IP addressse, IIRC) the door is opened for the Ideal Solution. My Ideal Solution is to have a lookup file (propagated across all routeters, of course) which will connect any alphanumeric string with the IPv6 internet address for which it will be an identifier.

    The lookup file will be infinitely expandable (by certain parties, no scr1pt k1dd13z registering names) so that any IPv6 address can be given any identifier. Just think, you could register your ice maker as joe.palotnik.frigidair.ice.maker.

    You could enter "joe palotnik ice" into Google (don't U use it?) and find the listing for joe.palotnik.frigidaire.ice.maker. Then you could click on the link, enter your authorization, and read about how your ice maker is functioning.
  • Hmm... I seem to have left out the important point in my post about "giving each letter (or a group of letters) to a different governing body to run".
  • Someone please remind me again why we even bother with fixed TLD's and don't just break out the international domains across root servers distributed by the alphabet?

    I shouldn't matter what your root is if all domains starting with 'x' go on the 'x' server, all domains starting with 'y' go on the 'y' server, and letters that are used more often just go a few characters deeper (instead of just 's', we have 'sa'-'sd' on one server, 'se-sg' on another, etc.).

    We'd have to rewrite the lookup routines on everything, but it seems it wouldn't be all that hard to transition to this.
  • What about businesses that operate in multiple countries, or organizations that don't have a particular affiliation to any country. Should they have to register their domain for every country they operate in? I agree that it is unfair that the US has such dominance over .com .edu etc... But doing away with all non cc domains isn't an ideal answer. I know this sounds corny, but the net isn't about regionalization and nationalism, its about globalization.

    Not to mention that there is no way that all the .com domains companies have spent millions to obtain can be taken away at this point.

    Spyky
  • I had this idea a couple of years ago. I should have filed a patent on it so I could sue you for IP theft! :)

    At the time, lookups were getting rather slow due to the explosive growth of the internet. By using the letters as an index, the load could be spread across multiple servers. Less used letters could be combined, while extremely popular ones could be broken down even further, exactly as you suggest. It's a fairly simple bit of coding, but would require a universal change to the internet - not an easy thing to get done.
  • I think you need to up your dosage since your medication is no longer effective.

  • I seem to recall (from his TLD applications to ICANN) that Garrin makes his primary living selling cars, and is doing this name.space thing only as a sideline (although obviously he hopes to get wealthy from it).

    I'm not sure I want to stake the future of the net on even new-car salesman.

  • >Communism promotes Democracy. Communism does not
    >require nor desire Fascism.

    What a load of crap.

    Please supply evidence of a single real-world implementation of Communism that promotes Democracy.

    For bonus points, supply evidence of a Communist state that respects any form of individual rights or freedom.

    Until you can do so, please stick your head back up your ass and stop promoting a system that has proven to be a dismal, destructive failure everywhere it has been tried.
  • China wants to run their own roots so they can better control what their people see.

    It has nothing to do with ICANN's policy of protecting IP holders and domain registrars.
  • And if you're not a DNS server, and you just want to be able to access alternative domains, you can simply add name.space's DNS servers to /etc/resolv.conf

    nameserver 209.48.2.11
    nameserver 206.86.247.30

    http://namespace.org/switch/unix.html?

    here are instructions for other operating systems:
    http://namespace.org/switch/

  • and if it can be made easy enough for people to update their network settings to do so (on the order of "lynx -source http://go-gnome.com/ | sh" for example, or maybe just "click here and then select OK when Windows asks if you want to update your settings") then there will be a mass movement to alternate DNS
    http://namespace.org/switch/ [namespace.org]
  • I was actaully looking for this post in this thread I'm suprised it took until post 53. The internet was created by the US, plain and simple. It has expanded to include the whole world and is "a virtual space without borders", but is sure as hell has a heirarchies, thats what the TLD's are for. More TLD's may create an internet without heirarchies, but do we want that. Wasn't there just an article a day or so ago talking about how hard it is for the search engines to keep track of the net. Now with more TLD's that will become easier? Sure it will.....
  • seems like a temporary solution.. as tld's multiply, so will the cost to "own" names.. Are there any consensus-based systems to resolove naming conflicts? Ideally consensus-defaults could be overridden by personal preference.. Mass-customization wants 6 billion tld's.. one for each person.. maybe lambda will solve the problem:

    LAMBDA

    We have the bandwidth. We have the capacity with optical fiber to give each user on Earth his or her own lambda, a distinct color of light. That's right, there's enough bandwidth in the spectrum to give everybody, 5 billion people, a little slice of light each. And on the edges, you can connect your slice of light with whatever device you use and suck in the information you want. And in this way it will be exactly like the real world, which is inundated with air and light.

    http://www.zdnet.com/intweek/stories/news/0,4164,2 621610,00.html [zdnet.com]
  • I looked at this, was impressed, and have begun using the name.space servers to resolve DNS. truly a better way to go.

    I did, however, find it silly that there is a .2000 :)
  • So how come registering a .co.uk costs so much more than registering a .com? Don't know where you get that idea from. .co.uk's are much cheaper. All I have to pay is 5.78 UKP for a two year .co.uk registration. A .com will cost three times that.

    Pax,

    White Rabbit +++ Divide by Cucumber Error ++

  • ac.uk is for eduational instutites (in the uk, naturaly). Simmilar to the .edu tld

  • Why spend $2 million on a superbowl advert for a domain name that only 10% ...

    Why spend $2 million on a super bowl ad at all?

  • HTML and HTTP were created at the expense of the European Union.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't HTML and HTTP (and most other internet technologies) predate the EU?

    I can see it now, TBL back in the 80's thinking to himself "What can I do to screw the nonexistant EU? I know! HTML and HTTP! And furthur, I'll use DNS to pile an unfair domain system on top of that!"


  • Rubbish!

    I pay well under £10 per year (10gbp ~= $15), which is less than I have ever seen "real" .com registrations for.

  • Excellent quote. That sums it right up. As the Village Voice article make very clear, there is are a lot of big egos in the Alt DNS world. Basically, a lot of people want to be Vint Cerf.

    Well, we don't need another Vint Cerf. We need a way of operating our namespace which is accountable and cannot be held hostage by monied interests - as has certainly been the case with ICANN, and would probably be the case with name.space and others as well. Hell, new.net IS a monied interest.

    For this reason, I am a member of OpenNIC. Membership and full voting rights are available to anyone with an interest and internet access.


    Claim your namespace.

  • Consider: a major search engine decides to also parse through sites listed via the alternate DNS server in addition to the traditional ones. Search results would then link to the site by IP instead of name (and maybe display a teeny icon indicating its presence on the other DNS system). Thus, the sites would still be searchable and useable, while at the same time spreading word of the new DNS system's existance.

    Again, it's a nice idea, but bear in mind that most websites are hosted virtually - many sites to 1 IP. They rely on the browser passing the hostname as part of the HTTP headers. If you just provide an IP to link, the browsers don't have this information to send, so will just be fed the default site for that IP.
  • by bencc99 (100555) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @02:49AM (#316279) Homepage
    This relies on your audience having set up DNS to query their servers for these additional TLD's. Naturally, 99% of the net won't have done, so you're seriously missing out on a lot of potential visitors. It won't be indexed by any search engines, as they most likely won't be searching alternate DNS, and unless people are running their own mailservers with support for the domains, you won't be able to count on getting mail from people.

    It's a nice idea - just a shame it's unworkable until it's accepted by the current top level authorities, which of course it never will unless they can screw money out of it...
  • Why not design a peer to peer network for the sole purpose of exchanging zone files based on set factor?

    A zone file is distributed into this "dns network" in a similar fashion the information flows through Freenet or Gnutella - perhaps even utilize Freenet for this. If a host recevies multiple copies of a zone, it would need a mechanism to verify which is the authentic version. Certanly many ways can be devised to do this. One way could be longevity. The longer a "zone" (file) has been in this network (transit) the more hosts will trust it. Naturally if someone registers www.slashdot.org before anyone else, this zone will have been in the system longer than anybody else's. Quite simple - zero squatting. Perhaps implement a rule whereby trademark owners in the "real world" have first claim on names within the cyber world (who would want to associate themselves with something stupid like marlboro.com or mcdonalds.com anyway, I'm sure we all have more important code to write). One more variable could be introduced with each zone sent and that is a host trust value.

    Each host would have a trust value for itself (separate from it's zone). This would indicate how trustworthy that host is. The same principle would apply as to the zone - the longer the host is on the network, the longer it's trusted - hence the first node will be god.

    This is a problem obviously, so a mechanism should be devised around it. Perhaps trustworthiness is decided in months as units, therefore MANY nodes could have a value of 1 to begin with. The nodes used initially would be terminated the moment the system goes online, therefore preventing the developers from being masters. This is a good thing in the long run as nobody should really have control.

    I think I'm just ranting at this point so I'll stop, but there are ways to make DNS better.

    One alternative to all of this could be to assign each domain name a unique number, and distribute these amongst all "servers" with some protocol - this is vague, but it's sorta the way various ASs know how to reach each other via BGP - same concept, different purpose.

    If anyone thinks this is a good idea, feel FREE to use it, bash it to a pulp, fine tune the ideas, and write the RFCs, as I have no idea how to do so.

    Just my suggestions,
    Bojan

  • by alexhmit01 (104757) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:03AM (#316281)
    Back when Internic was run by Network Solutions for the Commerce Department, there was opposition to their control. Alternic was proposed, with alternative TLDs if users (or ideally, ISPs) would switch their DNS over to support it.

    This crashed and burned fabulously, but that may have been influenced by hack attempts on root servers, etc.

    Still, this seems unlikely. People want .com. They don't want country codes, and they don't want the other minor ones.

    When $100 was the registration fee and nobody was doing business online, people cared about cheap alternatives. Now that the costs of doing business on the Internet are huge, nobody is not going to shell out $70 (or $30/2 years with some of the cheaper services) while maintaining a presence.

    Additionally, people want a good domain name or a generic one. As nobody is going to try to guess these random TLDs and assume that their ISP supports it, this names provide no value.

    Give it up, "The Man" 0wns DNS and won't let go.

    Alex
  • I think what it will do is to create competition in the market instead of keeping the current monopoly in place.

    What should happen is that we need one centralized database that is Free (Free as in free of monopolistic control) and open to any company (or single individual) for registration. A non-profit world-wide organization to handle the centralized database for all domains would need to be in place.

    The registration companies will then need to compete as service companies, giving value added service to those who wish to pay for the markup. Just look at RedHat. The operating system is Free, but RedHat makes money by making it easy for people that are willing to pay for the added service. (I'm trying not to use that overused buzzword Open******)
  • And when was the last time you used a URL with an IP number in it for anything but downloading warez?

    Nowadays, everything works with hostnames. If you can't resolve them, being able to access the hosts they point to doesn't help you one bit because you don't know which hosts those are.

  • I imagine most people on /. would agree with the statement that the current arrangement is rather lame.

    Sure? I for one don't have any problems with it. The root servers are numerous and widespread enough to be disaster-resistant, and having more of them sure as hell won't make the system more hax0r-resistant. As for the TLD issue, that's something companies gripe about, not users.

  • Good going. As soon as somebody faxes your post to the AOL execs, they'll use your idea and create their own splinter TLD. The net is doomed and it's your fault.

  • In order to phase out generic TLDs, you'd have to give the .com owners a way to migrate to .us (where the majority of domain holders are). Unfortunately the .us domain [www.nic.us] is based on geographical hierarchy -- Slashdot would have to become slashdot.andover.ma.us -- and that system isn't as user-friendly as a .com.

    Here's who to contact [nic.us] if you're interested in lobbying.

  • They also have all the mappings listed in the regular DNS sense, too. From the page:

    Clients who host their DNS with Name.Space are mirrored in the domain ".XS2.NET" for compatibility with legacy domains. (i.e. name.space = name.space.xs2.net)

  • by abiogenesis (124320) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:20AM (#316288)

    Their web server (http://name.space.xs2.net/) is already slashdotted... Are we sure that their root DNS will be available all the time?
  • But as long as name.city.state.us is enforced as the only legit use of the .us domain, it's probably remain that way.

    If somehow Colorado, Nebraska, Oregon, and Alaska would give up the "city" requirement, you would get .co.us, .ne.us, .or.us, and .ak.us as alternatives to .com, .net, .org, and .edu (patterned after .ac.uk).

  • They own the patent for that stupid GIF image format

    No, that's Unisys [burnallgifs.org]. Verisign owns a monopoly (not court-enforced but MS-enforced) on trusted SSL and Authenticode certificates (having bought Thawte [thawte.com]), even though VeriSign isn't doing a good job of checking its facts [slashdot.org].

  • At this point I won't be converting. In order to access a Name.Space server, you have to download an app to use it.

    Not necessarily. If you're running Linux, you can always add their root server to resolv.conf. There are also ways of doing this in BSD, BeOS, and pretty much any other OS that can access DNS.

  • You nailed it... This guy is simply trying to make a buck (a big buck) by forcing people to use his system. I'm not against his idea of tons of gTLDs I just think that some non-profit organization, possibly funded by the government should control it and manage it. That is the role of ICANN, however ICANN still does not manage the registry, that is where Verisign comes in. I think ICANN's role should be extended and they should replace Verisign as the manager of the system, that way no one monopolistic company will have control of the domain name system. The money from registrations should go towards maintaining the registry and all of the infrastructure, which is tightly audited by a different body of the government. Some people argue that the US should not control the internet, I see some validity to their argument however remember it was the US that created the Internet in the first place, it is our baby and if the world wants a piece of it then they need to play by our rules.

    Nathaniel P. Wilkerson
    Domain Names for $13
  • People want .com. They don't want country codes

    This is totally untrue:

    When i go online to buy the latest number of "Creamy Banana Erotic Magazine" i don't want to end up buying it from a US store (i live in Europe).

    Just imagine the thing getting stuck in customs because they happened to open it in the page where "Anita Big Melons" grabs an overgrown banana and a goat cheese and proceeds to ......

  • by HerrGlock (141750) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @02:46AM (#316295) Homepage
    If only for the one problem with the root zones. If those (six? ten?) root DNS servers are cracked, the whole 'net is in shambles as soon as the TTL expires for each site.

    I'm not sure what the answer IS, but it cannot be to have the entirety of the internet dependant on a relative handful of base servers.

    It's like the 'Jesus nut' on a helicopter. Single point of failure means catastrophic failure for the machine. The difference is that the 'net has the capability of double/triple redundancy.

    The more spread out the base servers, and the more there are, the better off we are even with the increased work load of maintaining the new rash of servers required.

    DanH
    Cav Pilot's Reference Page [cavalrypilot.com]
  • HTML and HTTP were created at the expense of the European Union. Granted that the web doesn't need these as such, but it would be a damn sight less popular and useful without them.
  • Yep right, although it's still European countries funding it, so I wasn't too far off.
  • Just to repeat myself - no the internet doesn't need those protocols, but it wouldn't be anything like as usable without it.
  • by SubtleNuance (184325) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @07:20AM (#316306) Journal
    Chris Ambler of Image Online Design, which runs the .web registry, is even more emphatic. "The problem with Name.Space is [Garrin] wants something that no one else has: 500 top-level domains and the ability to create new ones at will. He's trying to claim everything! He makes lofty claims about having a shared system, but it requires people to use his system, and he gets a piece of every new registry! In my book, that's called communism, or socialism at best."

    This is slightly off topic - but the quote from the article above needs clarity, and it passes very close by my personal politics and a gripping pet peeve.

    Chris Ambler: In this regard Mr. Garrin may be interpreted as acting as a capitalist and NOT a Socialist or Communist

    He is refuting to be interested in a shared, libre and community owned/operated system - but instead he is trying to take a "piece of every new registry" for himself; you would really be accusing him of trying to REPLICATE Verisign. This is clearly a CAPITALIST motivation.

    Mr. Ambler, you seem to know nothing of Communism or Socialism outside of the McCarthy inspired dogma and disinformation rampant in the United States. Please before you attempt to slight someone for being a "Communist", as if it is a naturally 'bad' thing to be avoided (which betrays your bigoted pre-disposition), you may want to understand what the hell your talking about. Further, it is almost amusing when describing an anti-social, selfish, introverted and greedy act it is labeled 'Communist' when really it is the exact antithesis. The act you accuse Mr.Garrin of committing would perfectly exemplify Capitalist principles.

    Communism is NOT about control - that is Fascism - and usually Americans confuse the two. Communism promotes Democracy. Communism does not require nor desire Fascism.

    Politics: Democracy, Fascism
    Economics: Communism, Capitalism.

    To be honest, Capitalism more closely aligns with Fascism. Communism more closely aligns with Democracy. One set of principles rely on Control (Fascism) and Ownership (Capitalism), while Democracy (Equal Right to Participation in Governance) and Communism (Community ownership of capital, controlled by consensus) are really a more natural pair. American political discourse is so perverted by propaganda that a real understanding of the contradiction of their community - the epithaths and principles - is outside the scope of the normal person.
    Start by reading this: Fascism @ Dictionary.com [dictionary.com], Democracy @ Dictionary.com [dictionary.com], Communism @ Dictionary.com [dictionary.com]* and Capitalism @ Dictionary.com [dictionary.com]. You are also invited to read: The Manifesto of the Communist Party. [colorado.edu] written in 1848 by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels.

    You will find that Communism is NOT about oppression and control - but freedom from the Ruling Class and true democratic principles. You will find that most people who would be opposed to corporate control also have some maintain some ideas that could may rightly be labeled as Communist - but the collective political mind in America is so polluted by Capitalist Dogma against even the simple word that Communism's many merits cannot even be rightly discussed.

    *Its very interesting to see that dictionary describes Communism with words like "scheme, authoritarian, claiming, theoretical" which are themselves charged and purposefully chosen to berate the idea.

    McCarthyism set back American Culture by 300 years.

  • "Garrin is hoping to 'reterritorialize the Net, bringing it back to its original ideal of virtual space without borders or hierarchies.'"

    This statement irks me - Consider that the Internet is over 30? years old, originally a creation of the United States Department of Defense... Yes... That's right, the US DOD. Therefore, the entire premise of this guy's statement is blatantly false. How can this system, a creation of the US Military, which was originally built to support the US military's computing needs in a nuclear war, have as its original ideal of "virtual space without borders or hierarchies"??? It didn't. Yes - the current domain naming system needs to be reevaluated, and possibly scrapped. But do you really think that will happen? At the very least what we need is a Fair naming arbitration system, and a limit on domain holdings.
  • DNS doesn't put out as much info as HTTP usually. Besides, the current TLDs carry only 70-80% availability on average. Yet I don't see you complaining!

    I can't be karma whoring - I've already hit 50!
  • by purplemonkeydan (214160) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:12AM (#316316)
    Couldn't major ISP's (Telstra and Optus in Australia, or AOL, MSN and Earthlink in the States, for example) set their DNS servers to check not only the traditional hierarchy, but these new DNS servers as well?

    In exchange, Name.Space or whoever could give, say AOL their own TLD. Rather than give out http://hometown.aol.com/Bob27484947, they could give out http://Bob27484947.aol.

    Just a thought ... dunno if its feasible or not.

  • by linuxrunner (225041) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:32AM (#316326) Homepage
    I can see the pro's and con's for new domains. Obviously the con's have been spoken for by the previous posts so I won't bother posting them again. (waste of time). The Pro's on the other hand is that whenever there is a .com .net .org domain, their easy to find. The average american and others in the world knows those three. You start adding into the mix too many others, you'll never be able to find what you're looking for.

    A prime example: a kid in grade school wants to look up the whitehouse for a school project. There's all ready too many domain names, he doesn't know..... he types in http://www.whitehouse.com [whitehouse.com] and WHOA... What do we have here? Little did he/she know that you were supposed to type in http://www.whitehouse.gov [whitehouse.gov]. To me, I think that this is wrong. Domains should remain easy and simple to remember.

    If they plan on having 118 new domains, then someone out there better find a better way to search then yahoo and google... The web is getting to big to cataloge.
    By creating a better searching method, new domains are possible. Until then, keep .com's for commercial, .org's for organizations, .net's for personal, and make one especially for the porn sites... maybe .ooooooh
    And then police them. Just because McDonalds is a business and has the rights to a .com name shouldn't mean they should automatically have the rights to a .org name too....

    My $.02

  • DNS lokups return hardly any information - Just the name or IP address.
    Maybe a new protocol is needed. This proposed new protocol (Based arround P2P networking probably) will allow searches on not only IP address or Name, but other attributes -the type of server (Web, Email, Telnet, Etc) , locality (UK,US,Etc), Interest (&0001=Computing,&0002=TV,&0004=Porn, etc), and return not just an IP address(as DNS does), but if requested to, the Email address of the host owner, a brief description of what the host does, etc etc..

    Also, you shouldn't have to pay loadsass for the privilige, or having to contact some party to update their servers. Just adding a name in a configuration file in your PC should be enough enable people to start doing lookup's on your server. There should be a way of getting rid of unwanted sites - Maybe using a distributed moderation, whereby somtimes, while browsing a particular host, another host which was queried during lookup might at random send a request to you to give the site a rateing. - Hosts with a rating less than a certain value would be purged from the framework, ..... This would stop people registering loads of addresses for profit.

    And maybe, it would be possible to have a demon running in the background that will function as a fake DNS server, and reroute DNS lookup requests through this new framework.

  • Fees from new registrations plummeted, Garrin says, from as much as $3000 a day to barely $100. "ICANN killed our business," he says.

    Not a bad rate of pay eh?

    So ICANN killed the business by refusing to give the guy 115 root level domains. And so in time honored US fashion he goes crying his eyes out to a senator or two to ask for a handout.

    The quote from Ambler is somewhat amusing, he is the guy who has been trying to sell .web names for a few years now.

    The Internet's is the first revolution whose pioneers believed they could create a better world while making themselves rich.

    Absolutely nobody got into the Internet in the early years thinking they would get rich. Even MarcA didn't work out that he could make a lot of money claiming credit for other's work until 1995 or so. And to be brutally honest most dotcom millionaires got rich persuading the great american public to invest their retirement savings in companies that will never show a profit rather than building companies that were intended to last. And the folk doing that tended to be opportunists rather than 'Internet Pioneers'.

    The only value to a domain name is if anyone anywhere can use it to send you an email. Vanity domain names are just that if you can't use them reliably. If you have the email address master@timelord.galifrey, that is real cool but if only 1% of the world recognise it, much less usefull than 48129@ieorhw.net.

    There is a commercial advantage to having a generic business name, however if only 10% of the buying public can see a particular name the interest in marketing it is likely to be small. Why spend $2 million on a superbowl advert for a domain name that only 10% of the population can go to? Why deal with lost business because people can't find the site?

    The domain name system is only fought over because it is massively usefull, it only has that utility because it is a single coherent system. Balkanize the root and you remove the incentive for people to bid up the prices of domain names.

  • Chris Ambler: In this regard Mr. Garrin may be interpreted as acting as a capitalist and NOT a Socialist or Communist

    Right, Ambler is just calling names. In fact Ambler tried to do exactly the same sort of thing with no success so far so I guess he is a communist too by his logic.

    You will find that Communism is NOT about oppression and control - but freedom from the Ruling Class and true democratic principles.

    Those 'true democratic principles' not including elections which are merely 'borgeois devices' according to Lenin. One can argue that Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, Mao et. al. all failled to implement 'real communism'. However the dictatorial line is pretty clear in Karl Marx. If you want to throw out Marx you haven't got a communist movement.

    Complaining about the association between Communism and Stalin's police state is a bit like trying to separate Facism and Hitler. OK so Mussolini invented Facism and not Hitler and Mussolini's political murders were in the low tens of thousands rather than the millions. The Italian Facist party tries to do this today but it is still a murderous creed.

    Given the times of 1848 when the Communist manifesto was written Marx and Engels were relatively liberal for the time, most continental European countries were authoritarian dictatorships, Britain was at best a qualified democracy - only those with wealth got the vote. The US was not a major power and was largely identified with slave plantations rather than the rights of man. The idea that a doctrine of resistance to the miserable political and ecconomic conditions of that time is the all encompassing solution to the problems of our own is somewhat wierd.

    European socialism on the other hand is completely different. At present all but one of the European democracies has a left wing government that started as a socialist movement. Socialists have long known the dangers of communists - Lenin gained power in Russia by overturning a democratic socialist regime and having most of the delegates shot. Communism is to socialism what Facism is to conservatism. The European socialist movement is essentially what the US calls Liberals and was the political movement that gained universal sufferage, female suffrage, free trades unions, the welfare state etc.

    The 'Capitalism' that Marx talks about is a concentration of capital in the hands of the very few. The 'Capitalism' we have today is much more broadly distributed. Capital is no longer the means of control it was in 1850. Marx might not approve but he certainly would not make the same argument against it.

  • by deran9ed (300694) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @03:02AM (#316342) Homepage
    For the past five years, he and his company, Name.Space, have been seeking to overthrow the U.S.-sanctioned monopolies that govern the Web.

    So are we to leave one for profit company, and jump to another? I could see if this was a non profit complaining and campaigning, but you have a domain registrar bringing this up, which begs questioning about the true intentions. So this company would stand to profit from a break up, which doesn't impress me, so his gripes are bascially he can't make any money with Verisign in the picture, hardly worth My Rights Online.

    Why should an aspiring artist have to scrap to be www.sculptor.com when she could just as easily be www.erotic.sculptor or www.heavenly.form?

    I noticed how this turd is obfuscating politicians knowledge about technology with some of his gripes such as the above. For one its not up to any "root" servers to determine these naming convetions its up to ICANN, so why doesn't he gripe to them. The article to me is sort of a bit of snake oil written to beg for sympathy, by an author trying to get a nice sized bite of what he calls the enemy (Verisign).

    Should Verisign be the sole holder of root name servers, probably not, but at least aside from occassional issues of domain squatting, the net isn't out of control with fights from domain registrars attempting to introduce tons of new names daily, simply because they're registrars. Here's a solution, create a body to handle it, but make those in charge professors at the most prestigous universities around. This way there can be no commercial control of the domain naming system, nor root servers. Maybe things will be handled ethically instead of morons bringing out suit after suit claiming infringements, unfair play, etc.,.

    Ghost in the Shell [antioffline.com]
  • But these islands all use IP-addresses assigned by a centralized organization assigning blocks to the regional authorities (RIPE etc.), who have monopolies on handing out IP addresses for their region to ISPs etc.. I fail to see how this is different from the way the domain space is currently run.

    The only reason the allocation of IP addresses doesn't really matter is that nobody care if their IP address is easy to remember. Well, almost noone.

  • Guess what? You've just reinvented the DNS hierarchy, but going from the left hand instead of the right hand, and without solving anything.
  • by sleeper0 (319432) on Wednesday April 04, 2001 @02:59AM (#316348)
    The village voice article certainly paints Paul Garrin in a sympathetic light. There's a lot of talk of high ideals, a movement for the people, a nd powerful monopolies.

    "We're reterritorializing the Net," Garrin boasted, "bringing it back to its original ideal of virtual space without borders or hierarchies."

    When in reality Name.Space has by far the most to gain in this movement. What they've been doing for years is selling alternative tld's, with the idea that they would have to be grandfather'd in once the world was ready to use nearly unlimited tld's. All Name.Space is selling to it's customers is a risky bet that Name.Space will get the domains because ICANN feels that there is enough adoption that the conflicts will cause real problems. From the looks of things, ICANN doesn't buy it.

    In my book, Paul Garrin is essentially participating in massive domain speculation, with the idea that he can hold ICANN and the roots hostage on the day they decide to open them up to the public. How is this different than domain name squatting?

    Someone should tell him that the boom is over and everyone is moving on to new get rich quick schemes.

  • Doubting the intentions of Paul Garrin is a real mistake. I have known Paul Garrin for 26 years. I have never met a more righteous person. If you know anything about his history, do any research into his list of accomplishments, one thing will become very clear. Mr. Garrin's mission is to do the right thing for the public, act as a real public servant, and protect the public from exploitation by monopolies and powerful commercial interests. Paul Garrin is an ethical giant. He has not sold out or caved in to the strong pressures of powerful special interests, instead he is standing fast to see the "truth" be shared, and the current system that violates our free speech be changed. He is a true American hero. If more people were as righteous as Mr. Garrin, the world would be a better place. Article reference. http://villagevoice.com/issues/0114/ferguson.shtml

If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.

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