Re: IP addresses/domain names at the end of a sentence

Subject: Re: IP addresses/domain names at the end of a sentence
From: "Sandy Harris" <sharris -at- dkl -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 02 Mar 2000 12:42:54 -0500

Jennifer Laiks wrote:

> I want to find out how people handle IP addresses and domain names at the
> end of a sentence. We put the domain name and IP address in a different
> font. But will the period at the end of the sentence confuse the reader?
> Will they think it's part of the information? For example:
> .. , the default domain is usually xyz.com.
> .. determine that its IP address is 132.147.0.190.

This may not matter to you, but in one context the placement of periods at
the end of these strings is very important.

The Domain Name Service (DNS) is where machines look all this stuff up. e.g.
When I hit send for this message, my machine is going to ask a nearby DNS
server for an IP address for lists.raycomm.com. After a somewhat complex
dance involving a hierarchy of DNS servers (root servers know where to
find the DNS server for raycomm.com, and that server knows the address for
the lists machine) and possibly caching (I sent mail to lists a while ago and
we hope my DNS saved the address to avoid all those lookups), it gets an address.

In the files that define DNS information, periods are important.
I'm hazy on details, but here's an example. This is the part of the output
of the Unix 'dig' command when asked to find the IP address for a site:

;; QUERY SECTION:
;; www.uu.net, type = A, class = IN

;; ANSWER SECTION:
www.uu.net. 5M IN A 208.243.117.123

;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
uu.net. 1H IN NS auth00.ns.uu.net.
uu.net. 1H IN NS auth60.ns.uu.net.

;; ADDITIONAL SECTION:
auth00.ns.uu.net. 1H IN A 198.6.1.65
auth60.ns.uu.net. 1H IN A 198.6.1.181

This is finding various A records that define names and NS records that
give NameServers authority for pieces of the namespace.

The periods it prints are in those records and are required to be
there by the sysntax rules for those records.




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