James Seng

James Seng

Managing Director
Joined on October 23, 2003 – China
Total Post Views: 331,399

About

James Seng, the founder of Zodiac Holdings Limited (Zodiac), is well known as the inventor of Internationalized Domain Names (IDN), the underlying technology that enables domain names to be in non-English such as Chinese. Founded in 2008, Zodiac is the largest new gTLD applicant focuses on the Chinese market.

Currently, James Seng is the Vice President of 21Vianet Group, Inc (NASDAQ:VNET).

Featured Blogs

Making Sense of MIIT's Category of Telecommunications Services

This morning I read a catchy titled article on CircleID "China Closing the Door to New Technologies". I was trying to make sense of what all the fuss is about... So I called up my friends in Ministry of Industry and Information (MIIT) for lunch to find out what's going. more»

Analysis of the IDN New gTLD Applications

There has been a lot of excitement since ICANN revealed the list of 1930 applications for new gTLD yesterday at an event in London yesterday. Even some of the strongest opponents of the ICANN's new gTLD program have acknowledged there is a case to open up new gTLDs for Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs). I am going to focus here on the analysis of the IDN applicants. more»

Why ICANN TLD Policy Imposes Severe Constraint on Development of Internationalized Domain Names

In 2008, ICANN made it known to the community that it is finally ready to discuss Internationalized Domain Names regarding Top-Level Domains (TLDs) after several years of working groups, technical trials, studies and considerations. It was highly anticipated by the Chinese, Japanese and Korean (CJK) community. It was also with great disappointment when the New gTLD Application Guidebook, published on 24th Oct 2008, included the following paragraph... more»

Anti-Phishing and Hong Kong

Planning for a short trip to Hong Kong tomorrow reminded me of Jonathan Shea, something I wanted to blog about but was waiting for the hype around the new generic Top-Level Domains (TLDs) to cool down. Jonathan Shea is an old friend who is in-charge of ".hk". I had the pleasure to catch up with him in Paris ICANN meeting. Before Jonathan, let me talk about something related that happened in Paris. At the Cross Constituency Meeting, there was a presentation by the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG). In summary, they were proposing working with registries to take down domain names that are suspected to be involved in phishing. more»

Powell Warns Net Neutrologists Not to Be Naive

Just got this email reporting the speech made by former FCC Chairman @ F2C organized by David Isenberg. "Former FCC chairman Michael Powell is up on the stage at the Freedom to Connect conference right now, and he warns the tech elite crowd here not to be naive about the dangers of asking Congress for legislation on Net Neutrality. As he explains..." more»

Network Neutrality

In January of this year, a frontpage article on WSJ quoted Verizon Chief Executive Ivan Seidenberg "We have to make sure they (Google) don't sit on our network and chew up our capacity". Both AT&T and Bellsouth also made similar statements in the same article. A few days ago, Verizon repeat their call to "End Google's Free Lunch": "A Verizon Communications Inc. executive yesterday accused Google Inc. of freeloading for gaining access to people's homes using a network of lines and cables the phone company spent billions of dollars to build." ...it is no surprise that Network Neutrality, a concept where broadband providers are not to discriminate rivals when they charge tolls or prioritize traffic, is now on the agenda of the US Congress. more»

When will we run out of IPv4?

A paper by Tony Hain was recently published in the Internet Protocol Journal which sparked a debate on Slashdot. Particularly, Tony's paper suggested that IANA will run out of IP addresses in 5 years or less. However, there is another paper written by Geoff Hutson which projects that we have enough IPv4 address until 2022. The differences got most people confused. So who is right? more»

Neustar and .GPRS

Ever since Neustar announced they signed a deal with GSMA to oversea global database for the mobile operators last week (see also Washington Post), there are many debates about the deal online. "Neustar, a company that should certainly know better, has announced that they're going to create a .gprs TLD to serve the mobile phone industry This, of course, requires creation of a private root zone, against the very strong warnings in RFC 2826" said Steven Bellovin. To the more supportive John Levine: "This isn't quite as stupid as it seems. The GSM industry needs some way to maintain its roaming user database, the database is getting considerably more complicated with 3G features, and it looks to me like they made a reasonable decision to use DNS over IP to implement it rather than inventing yet another proprietary distributed database." more»

Story Behind .ASIA

After releasing .travel and .jobs (hey, steve.jobs up for bidding!), ICANN said they will look at .xxx and .asia next. (via Chiao) "Vint Cerf: ...of those, we have had fairly extensive discussion about .asia and .xxx. We continue to evaluate those. The others will be attended to as we can get to them. But i want to say for the record that we will attempt within the next 30 days to come to a conclusion one way or the other about .asia and .xxx so these will be on a board call sometime within that period." Chiao called .ASIA "more or less like a joint venture among APxx organizations". I say nonsense! Don't let appearance fool you. more»

JET Open Letter to Microsoft

We, members of the JET (Joint Engineering Team), send this open letter to request Microsoft Corporation to implement IDN (Internationalized Domain Names) standards[1] in the next version of Internet Explorer. ...IDN is a critical enabling technology that will make the Internet more useable and attractive to the majority of the Chinese, Japanese and Korean population who do not use English in their daily life. In fact, IDN is mentioned as one of the Declaration of Action of the World Summit of Information Society (WSIS). To date, IDN registration has been launched in .cn, .jp, .kr, .tw and many other European country code top level domain as well as other generic top level domain names. More than 1 million IDNs have been registered since 2000. Most of the web browsers, such as Safari, Firefox and Opera have implemented IDN standards. This means that users can use IDN in these web browsers without additional applications or plug-ins... more»

IDN Parody on verisign.com

Guilllaume Rischard setup a parody on verisign.com using the IDN spoofing trick. He managed to get one registrar to register verisign.com with a cyrillic S (U+0405) (ie xn--veriign-mog.com :-) This actually started in #joiito a couple of weeks ago after the Eric published the spoofing attack paper. A joke was made that it would be funny if someone did it to verisign.com and so he did. I suppose I could rant why VeriSign should adopt the JET Guideline (or ICANN Guidelines) but this parody would send a louder message. more»

Innovation in DNS Business

One thing that amazed me about the ICANN community is the creativeness in finding new business models. I am not even talking about new technology like Internationalized Domain Names (IDN), the number of business models created from the vanilla DNS (actually just .com) are just mind boggling. ICANN was formed in 1999 and introduced the concept of registries and registrars model to the DNS business. With that, we witness the rise of register.com, an IPO darling in the dotcom days, in the early 2000s and subsequently overtaken by the ultra-cheap high-volume reseller model of GoDaddy. We also see new registries like .info and .biz and several others that didn't do so well. There are also after-market (aka ebay) for domain names like afternic and registry outsourcing, DNS hosting, Dynamic DNS etc. That's about what most outsiders know of DNS business models, mostly revolved around the registry-registrar-reseller model. But there are really more and I shall discuss two not-so-well-known but interesting models below. more»

IDN and Homographs Spoofing

There is a published spoofing attack using homographs IDN. By using a Cyrillic SMALL LETTER A (U+430), Securnia is able to pretend to be http://www.paypal.com/. Actually this is well-documented in RFC 3490 under the Security Consideration: "To help prevent confusion between characters that are visually similar, it is suggested that implementations provide visual indications where a domain name contains multiple scripts. Such mechanisms can also be used to show when a name contains a mixture of simplified and traditional Chinese characters, or to distinguish zero and one from O and l..." more»

Looking at .Net Bids

ICANN is now seeking public comments regarding the .net bids. Unlike before, I am not going to offend one friend or another by siding with one proposal over another. They are all qualified and experienced registry operators. Instead, I will make some general observations. 1. None of the Revenue and Pricing Model (i.e. Section 4) about the bids are available to public... more»

Where Did the .ORG Money Go?

A friend pointed me to the latest Internet Society budget for 2005 :- ISOC is expecting PIR (ie, .ORG) to contribute 3.4M to the society! Wow, thats 2-3x as much as what Internet Society gets from its membership! I think that's pretty neat because ISOC has been in the red for many years and could certainly use some help financially. After all, it is hosting IETF and also paying for the IANA registry and RFC-Editors, all of which is critical to the Internet standardization process... more»

Chinese IDN in the News

News.com published a well-research article on the Chinese Domain Names by Winston Chai: "This approach works fine in the English-savvy world. However, for non-English speakers, they could be faced with the unenviable task of rote-learning numerical IP addresses, which is highly improbable, or the English spellings of dozens of Web sites they want to access." Just a few points of interest... more»

Time for Reformation of the Internet

An anonymous writer posted an article titled Time for Reformation of the Internet on Susan Crawford's blog. The article calls for a liberal approach towards ICANN, making a number of references to IETF and its process. "It's time for netizens to come to a similar realization about their direct relationship with the empowerment offered by the internet. None of the core principles that produced the net give any set of clerics -- even the original engineers, or ISOC, much less ICANN -- the right to prevent innovation at the edge..." more»

Examining the Proposed Internationalization of TLDs

Last month, John Klensin wrote an article published here on CircleID regarding Internationalized Domain Names (IDN) Top Level Domains (TLD). Based on his Internet Draft, John suggests using language translation in the application for TLD. The advantage of this method is that all existing TLDs can now be represented in any number of languages without additional need for ICANN to create new TLD. While this sounds like a clean solution to the IDN TLD problem, I don't think it is viable for the following five reasons... more»

Thoughts on IPv6 Day

Jeff Pulver proposed an interesting idea called IPv6 Day... In geeks term, we call this a 'flag day'. The last time we have a flag day was 1st Jan 1983 when Internet moved from NCP (Network Control Protocol) to IPv4. So why not do it for IPv6? more»

Explaining China's IPv9

Recently, the news that China is adopting IPv9 is making rounds on the Internet. While some of them write off as an April Fool's joke (in July?) like RFC 1606, other wonders if there are more than meets its eyes. But most of them wonders what is this IPv9 and how does it actually works. And some of the English translated article are so badly done that it is impossible to get any useful technical information except that 'It is developed and supported by Chinese government!' more»

JET Guidelines for Internationalized Domain Names

It is difficult to explain RFC 3743 or commonly known as the Joint Engineering Team (JET) Guidelines without some lesson on Chinese, Japanese and Korean (CJK), particularly how it relates to Internationalized Domain Names (IDN). Luckily, an Internet-Draft we wrote back in 2001 discusses the issues quite neatly in this context. In brief, Chinese characters (Hanzi) or Han ideographs are evolved from pictographs (writing made up of pictures) across thousands of years. Unlike other writing systems, Han Ideographs are constantly evolving.  more»

Topic Interests

DNSDomain NamesMultilinguismRegional RegistriesICANNIPv6IP AddressingInternet ProtocolTop-Level DomainsWhoisSecurityRegistry ServicesEnumMobileTelecomVoIPIPTVPolicy & RegulationBroadbandAccess ProvidersNet NeutralityCloud ComputingDDoSSpamCyberattackInternet GovernanceCybercrimeEmailPrivacyDNS SecurityMalwareWireless

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Popular Posts

Explaining China's IPv9

Network Neutrality

IDN and Homographs Spoofing

Thoughts on IPv6 Day

JET Guidelines for Internationalized Domain Names