WG Review: Internationalized Domain Names in Applications (Revised) (idnabis)

Vint Cerf vint at google.com
Wed Apr 9 00:33:59 CEST 2008

the issue is not the addition of new characters but an attempt to  
define what is IDN suitable by reference to the classes of all the  
characters in Unicode so as to make the identification of protocol- 
valid characters a matter of algorithmic reference to properties of  
each character.


On Apr 8, 2008, at 5:59 PM, Kenneth Whistler wrote:

>> Could someone remind me why IDNA2003 couldn't be updated in a minimal
>> fashion to reference Unicode 5.1 instead of 3.2?  It's not like it  
>> is a
>> huge amount of work for every new Unicode version.
> Unicode 4.0.0 (April, 2003) added 1226 new characters.
> Unicode 4.1.0 (May, 2005)   added 1273 new characters.
> Unicode 5.0.0 (July, 2006)  added 1369 new characters.
> Unicode 5.1.0 (April, 2008) added 1624 new characters.
> And there are some thousands more in various stages in ISO
> ballotting for ISO/IEC 10646, which will also have to be
> added to Unicode in the next couple of years, to keep it
> in synch.
> And hidden underneath that were a small but significant
> number of character property assignment changes which could (or
> could not, depending on your point of view) have a bearing
> on decisions about which characters are appropriate for
> IDN labels.
>> Remember, the IDNA WG in 2003 chose consciously to reference a
>> particular Unicode version, for reasons that still are valid.  It  
>> didn't
>> happen by accident.
> No doubt. But the IETF could not (or at least did not)
> provide an update for Unicode 4.0 or any of the other
> releases since then, so IDNA2003 has stayed stuck at
> Unicode 3.2, despite very significant additions to Unicode
> since then. I have trouble envisioning how the IETF gets
> unstuck for maintaining IDNA, unless it disconnects that from
> having to review table contents for thousands of new characters
> and property stability for tens of thousands of existing
> characters each time it tries to update. Hence the need
> for building in Unicode version independence moving forward.
> --Ken
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