If internet is about interactivity between websites, domain name is the door for that interactivity. It is your online identity, very much like the name of your best friend, what is his very own personal identity.
From a user's point of view, a domain name is what he types in the address bar of his web browser to get a certain web site. For example, domain name of our website is www.kigoobe.com and one can get access to this site using the domain name www.kigoobe.com.
However, the scene behind the screen is not exactly the same. Though we see that computers use domain names to communicate over the internet, the basic things that they use to communicate is something called Internet Protocol Address (also called IP address). It is something numerical and a simple IP address can be like 10100011.00011011.00010101.10010011
This kind of combination of zeros and ones is called binary number system. To make things easier for people IP addresses are translated from binary to decimal numbers and the result becomes something like: 189.01.23.255 This looks simpler, but when thousands and millions of websites are in question, this kind of number system, though better than the first one, was still posing problem and then at last in 1983, the University of Wisconsin came forward with a solution to it, and that was to replace these numeric values with suitable text formats.
So here starts the story of www.kigoobe.com or www.yahoo.com or www.microsoft.com. Of course you will agree, that this is much easier to remember than all these 1 2 3 4 etc.
Another term important in this context and what you may come across quite often is URL. An URL (Uniform Resource Locator) can be said as the exact address that holds your domain name. For example, URL of the domain name www.kigoobe.com will be http://www.kigoobe.com. To see that in action, open another window and type in www.kigoobe.com in its address bar. If you press the enter key after that, you will see that kigoobe.com has been changed to http://www.kigoobe.com as the page loads. That's the URL. The browser changes it itself.
If we break this in different parts, we will find http, www, kigoobe, and com.
http: Hyper Text Transfer Protocol. Protocol stands for a set of rules for these kinds of communications. Transfer we all know. Hyper text stands for texts that contain links to other texts, and which is not constrained to be linear only. It can thus hold text, graphics, images, sound, video, and other multimedia files, etc.
Now if we take all together, http or hyper text transfer protocol stands as a set of rules that come into being during transfer of those kinds of hyper text files over the internet.
www: World Wide Web. It refers to all the publicly accessible websites of the world. Besides it also includes ftp (file transfer protocol) files, usenet newsgroups, etc.
kigoobe: It can be anything, something that you choose yourself. We have chosen Kigoobe, somebody else chose one day yahoo, you can choose yourname, or yourbusiness, whatever.
com: The most commonly used first level domain name. Other first level domain names include .org, .net, .edu, .gov, .us, .fr, etc.
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A Master in biological anthropology, the author is the owner of a Paris based web designing firm 'Kigoobe'.
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