The Domain “.COM” is 30 Years Old!
It is hard to believe that it has been thirty years since the first domain name was registered!
Yahoo! Tech – By: Daniel Howley – “Exactly 30 years ago, on Sunday, March 15, 1985, a computer company in Massachusetts registered the world’s first dot-com domain: Symbolics.com. And with that, the dot-com era officially began.
By the end of 1985, Symbolics.com was still one of just a small number of registered domains. Today, of course, there are hundreds of millions of domains floating around the Internet.
The domain system is a key foundation of the World Wide Web, which was born in 1991, at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN). Sir Tim Berners-Lee was the father of that idea, but it wouldn’t have gone far without a universal address network like the domain system.
The dot-com’s 30th birthday got us thinking about the Internet’s past. And that got us thinking about all of the dot-coms that came online in the past 30 years. And some that went.”
The first domain? Symbolics.com
And, it is still up, but not owned by the same folks, the site says:
“Symbolics.com is owned by a small investor group in Dallas, Texas. This site offers unique and interesting facts pertaining to business and Internet history.
Symbolics.com also offers a few unique advertising opportunities for select companies. Contact us if you have interest.
— Symbolics.com History —
So. How did I come to own the first domain name registered on the Internet? Symbolics.com was registered on March 15, 1985. I was 5 years old. I like to tell everyone that I had incredible foresight as a toddler. But that’s not the case.
Let me tell you a bit about the Symbolics Computer Corporation. These are the people who registered the name in 1985, and they were a company way ahead of its time.
The original Symbolics company pioneered computer development. Symbolics designed and manufactured a line of Lisp machines, single-user computers optimized to run the Lisp programming language. The Lisp Machine was the first commercially available ‘workstation’ (although that word had not yet been coined). Symbolics also made significant advances in software technology, and offered one of the premier software development environments of the 1980s and 1990s. **
Enter me, in 2009. I had always known (well, since the late 90s) that Symbolics.com was the first domain name registered on the Internet. It was a goal of mine to acquire one of the first few names ever registered. I know that others before me had reached out to Symbolics, and inquired about the purchase price of the domain name. For whatever reason, my timing was perfect (thank you Lord) and I contacted Symbolics right about the time they actually started considering selling the asset.
Today, Symbolics.com remains the first, and oldest, registered domain name out of approximately 275,000,000 domain names in existence. Of these 275 million domain names, approximately 120 million are of the .com extension. VeriSign reports that between 25 million and 30 million new domains are registered each year. There is a 72% – 75% renewal rate among .com domains – so approximately 3/4 of new registrations are renewed the following year. VeriSign reports that 87% of .com domains resolve to an active website (13% are inactive).
For me, personally, I am excited (and honored) to hold the first .com ever registered. Since domain names are my business, I am happy to be the owner of this fantastic piece of Internet history.