The links below have two things in common.  They don’t work. And they should.

http://hmrc.gov.uk

http://met.police.uk

http://parliament.uk

http://civilservice.gov.uk

http://hmg.gov.uk/ (though for so grand an address, the results to be found are sadly inconsequential)

Distinguishing a web server from gopher, telnet and the host of other application protocols which jostled for supremacy as they emerged from the primordial swamp of the early internet was important once.  But now it’s not. Now it’s just irritating.

And in a slightly different category, there is really no need to make people remember your preferred hyphenation style.  So this one doesn’t work either.  And it should.

http://hmtreasury.gov.uk/

I am not alone in these thoughts. And other people have been annoyed enough to think about a solution for routing round the damage, though there is no sign that it progressed beyond the original idea. But the time has surely come just to make this right.

Comments

  1. Sure it’ll all be http://direct.gov.uk soon enough, won’t it? And yes, thankfully, that one does work.

    It’s all symptomatic of the wider can’t-do attitude. But whereas the mystique around other elements of IT, such as content management, has been blown away, DNS remains a Holy of Holies.

    It would have been quicker to add the fix than it has been to type this sentence. But among the many layers between you and the DNS table itself, there are many people who don’t understand how easy it is, don’t care why it’s worth doing, or have a vested interest – financial or territorial – in not bothering.

    By the way: http://hmt.gov.uk works, and is much easier to recall (and faster to type). Likewise http://pm.gov.uk (although there’s something funny in the redirect/rewrite, which leads to a double-slash at the end).

    1. You have made writing that post worthwhile – hmt.gov.uk is a new one to me, and not having to remember that wretched hyphen will save entire seconds in my life. Thank you.

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