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I realize http://to/ is a TLD and slashes don't really have much to do with TLDs; they just got me thinking about URLs in general. Relative URLs with the protocol specified is something that hadn't occurred to me before. Thanks!

One question- I'm not too sure how a DNS lookup works from start to finish, but creating your own arbitrary zones wouldn't work for most people, would it?

Well, you'd do that for internal purposes. Anyone could set one up, so in that sense it would "work" for most people, but it wouldn't resolve for people who don't use the name server that the zone is setup on. I can see a use for it, but I think it's easier, conceptually, to create a private subdomain within an already established and registered publicly accessible domain and limit its access with views (a capability/feature of ISC bind (and perhaps others) where different zones are made available based on the source address of the DNS query).

The .local TLD, which is where zeroconf/rendezvous hosts end up is a standardized example of that. It is resolved not via regular name servers, but rather a network-segment limited distributed broadcast (an oversimplification), however.

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