The Domain Name System (DNS) is a system that stores information associated with domain names in a distributed database on networks, such as the Internet. The domain name system associates many types of information with domain names, but most importantly, it provides the IP address associated with the domain name. It also lists mail exchange servers accepting e-mail for each domain. This means that DNS is involved with each page visit on the internet and with each email message sent.
DNS is useful for several reasons. Most well known, the DNS makes it possible to attach hard-to-remember IP addresses (such as 188.8.131.52) to easy-to-remember domain names (such as "wikipedia.org") Humans take advantage of this when they recite URLs and e-mail addresses. Less recognized, the domain name system makes it possible for people to assign authoritative names, without needing to communicate with a central registrar each time.