What is the difference between .org and IDN TLDs?

What is the difference between .org and IDN TLDs?

There are two different types of .org IDNs. The Domain Name System (DNS) initially only supported the Latin characters a through z, A through Z, 0 through 9, and the hyphen. However in 2003 new standards were introduced that enabled the conversion of non-ASCII characters to the left of the dot – these characters could either be Latin letters with diacritics (e.g. ñ or â) or scripts that do not use the Latin alphabet such as Chinese or Cyrillic. The right of the dot (.org) remained in Latin characters.

What has changed with the new generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) IDNs is the addition of a multilingual translation service at the front end (the user’s browser) to supplement the DNS. This means that non-Latin characters can now be used on both sides of the dot, providing a completely non-Latin domain name.

Technically, when an IDN is input, the web browser algorithmically converts it into a combination of ASCII characters (known as Punycode). For example, the IDN for McDonald’s Russia (макдональдс.рф) is converted to the Punycode equivalent http://xn--80aalb1aicli8a5i.xn--p1ai/. It is this Punycode string that is sent to the name server, and when an IDN is initially registered, it is this Punycode address that is stored within the name server. This is how the domain name is found on the Internet.