The origins of the Domain Name System (DNS) can be traced back as far back as when the internet beginning of the internet. This means that this system is almost as old as the internet.
The purpose of this article will be to educate you about the history of the DNS system and How domain names have grown to be the building blocks of the internet today.
Before the World Wide Web
The internet first came into being in the early 1970s and was then closely followed by email and newsgroups. While these inventions were intuitive and helped people communicate more effectively, they soon introduced a new problem: How to locate and identify computers linked through a network ?
As a result, the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) was formed in 1972 by the United States Defense Department Agency. Its main responsibility was to assign unique identifiers to all computers in the network.
By 1973, TCP/IP was the accepted method of locating and connecting two computers on a network. Shortly afterwards, similar service providers that were in existence at the time adopted this communication protocol.
But it was not until 1984 that a major milestone in the history of domain names and the internet came. This was in the form of the first domain name server that was designed by the University of Wisconsin. It was able to convert human-readable domain names into unique numbers.
The next year in 1985, domain name extensions were introduced. These were .com, .net, and .org. This was also the year that the first domain name – symbolics.com – was registered. Unfortunately, the manufacturer that registered the domain name is now non-operational.
These milestones are what brought a new chapter in the World Wide Web because they set the stage for the internet as we know it today.Helpful post: How to choose a good Domain Name? 10 tips for you.
Era of the World Wide Web
The 90s saw the commercialization of the internet. The first breakthrough was in form of the introduction of the World Wide Web to the public in 1991. This was also the time the first domain name service provider was launched. Its main responsibility was running domain name registrars and server controls. To ensure that domain names were registered fast and effectively, the National Science Foundation (NSF) helped out. It also helped with regulating domain name prices.
IANA and NSF formed a public-private partnership in 1992 whose aim was to run a scalable commercial domain services. This partnership made it easier to form domain name registrars and it also became easier for businesses, educational institutions, and organizations to purchase domain names.
The years that followed the formation of the business partnership between the IANA and NSF so a lot of changes that played big roles in shaping the history of domain names to what it is today. The first change was by the Department of Commerce when it allowed private entities to take part in registering new domain names and internet addresses.
Additionally, ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) was formed in 1998 as a result of partnerships between stakeholders from all over the world. After its founding, the price of domain names experienced a significant drop. This is the reason why it is now easier than ever to get a domain name at an immensely affordable price.Cheap Domain Names: .Com only 99 cent per year.
Domain names in the 21st century
You may not have known that by 2010, more than 196 million domain names had already been registered. This was a result of the boom the internet experienced in the 90s and 2000s which has a big impact on domain name registrations. Additionally, the 21st century has seen much more developments like lifting of technical limitations that existed before.
A good example of this is how only English speaking people were allowed to register domains when the service was set up in the 90s. However, the service was opened to include other languages like Chinese and Arabic in the late 90s and early 2000s. This internationalization of domain names made it possible for more domain names to be registered which was the reason for the increased number of websites created in the 21st century.
Several top level domain extensions were also introduced in the 2000s. These were .aero and .biz that were introduced in 2000 and .travel and .jobs that were introduced in 2005. A few years later, the controversial .xxx domain extension was introduced. As such, all users can hope more domain names extensions can be introduction in the 21st century.