According to an article on Yahoo! News, ICANN this week began testing domain registration in eleven languages that use non-Roman character sets: Arabic, Chinese (both simplified and traditional), Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Russian, and Tamil.
Before this announcement, anyone registering a domain name had to restrict themselves to using 37 characters (A-Z, 0-9, and the dash); if this test goes well, domain names will be allowed to include -any- character renderable by a computer (hopefully via unicode?), making the web more accessible to non-English speakers. The lack of a common character set could, however, lead to further segmentation of the web along language lines. Your thoughts?