Three days from now, it’ll be 30 years since some pencil-pushing bureaucrat stared at a stack of papers, then punched some numbers into a rudimentary piece of software, thus registering the first application for a domain name.
Symbolics.com was officiated on Friday, March 15th, 1985 – the very first .com domain to be registered via an application.
After all these years, we now have more than 288 million registered domain names, and hundreds of new gTLDs. Registering a new domain name takes seconds, and no bored bureaucrat is involved in the process.
While some people may laugh at the registration numbers or dot .Coach for example, those 1,650 new domains on launch day far surpass the number of .com domains that existed years ago.
The registration of Symbolics.com was followed by that of BBN.com forty days later. A month passed by, and in May 1985, Think.com was registered, followed by MCC.com in early July. Taking a break from punching numbers for the summer, our history-writing bureaucrat processed the registration of DEC.com on the last day of September, and more than a month later, Northrop.com was secured as well. The first domain of 1986 was Xerox.com.
Back in the day, it literally took months before a new domain got registered.
These early days of the domain universe will forever be remembered for the quiet revolution that was made, all while we were busy working on PCs and macs with 640Kb of RAM; sending a FAX was the ultimate definition of office connectivity, and there were no consumer cellphones to distract us from important tasks every other second.
Happy 30th birthday, Symbolics.com – from all of your gTLD grandchildren. 😀
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