I'm trying to utilize a simple htaccess rule to possess neat Web addresses, like so.

http://domain.com/theid => read by http://domain.com/read.php?id=theid

but nonetheless produce other web addresses like just http://domain.com read normally

after experimenting I wound up with this particular (no longer working):

RewriteRule ^domain.com\/(.){5}$ read.php?id=$1 [QSA,L]

Rewriterules should not range from the domain, so you have to write something similar to:

RewriteRule ^/(.{5})$ /read.php?id=$1 [QSA,L]