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Re: DNS and potential energy
There are simply not going to me billions, millions, or even probably tens of thousands of TLDs as a result of this. It's still a complex several months long administrative process that costs some multiple of $100,000.
As far as I can work out, minus the press noise, the difference is that creating a TLD will take half a year rather than half a decade or more.
basket, the root zone -- there will be so many gTLD servers, no DNS resolver can cache the gTLD server lookups, so almost every DNS query will now involve an additional request to the root, instead of (usually) a request to a TLD server (where in the past the TLD servers' IP would still be cached for most lookups).
Maybe, maybe not.
Ultimately that is a 1/3 increase in number of DNS requests, say to lookup www.example.com if there wasn't a cache hit. In that case, I would expect the increase in traffic seen by root servers to be massive.
There will probably be a significant increase if there is a very wide takeup of new TLDs, yes.
Conversely load on some of the existing gTLD servers may decrease if the number of domains in active use is spread across a larger number of independent TLDs.
Possible technical ramifications that haven't been considered with the proper weight, and ICANN rushing ahead towards implementation in 2009 without having provided opportunity for internet & ops community input before developing such drastic plans?
Massive further sell-out of the root zone (a public resource) for profit? Further commercialization of the DNS? Potentially giving some registrants advantageous treatment at the TLD level, which has usually been available to registrants on more equal terms?? [access to TLDs merely first-come, first-served]
Don't think that is operational and in any case the current system is weighted towards entities who have had domains for eons when they were able to be the first comers, it's very unfair and unequal in the sense that it works against the interests of newer registrants. Definitely not operational though.
Vanity TLD space may make ".COM" seem boring. Visitors will expect names like "MYSITE.SHOES", and consider other sites like myshoestore1234.com "not-legitimate" or "not secure"
The operational issue is?
Actually your shoe shop still now has a greater number of choices (.com or .shoes) and I can bet that if your scenario comes to pass with a very aggressive and restrictive registrar of .shoes, some enterprising soul will register .boots, .sneakers or .shoeshop etc to make their living on those parts of the market that don't like .shoes policies.
The possibilities that vanity TLD registry opens are more insidious than it was for someone to bag a good second-level domain.
Questionable and certainly not operational.
Or .com. Oddly enough I just now found a Windows box and typed "command.com" in a browser URL bar and it did what I expected, when I typed the same thing at a cmd prompt it did something different and I expected that too.
Seeing as a certain popular operating system confounds local file access via Explorer with internet access... You may think "abcd.png" is an image on your computer... but if you type that into your address, er, location bar, it may be a website too!
To the extent that possibility already exists, there is a reason that web URIs have both a host and path component. I don't see why new TLDs substantially change this. If applications insist on confusing the two then bad things will always happen but that is an app issue.