[OSM-dev] proposal to kill areas

Etienne 80n80n at gmail.com
Sat Jul 22 11:26:58 BST 2006

On 7/22/06, Immanuel Scholz <immanuel.scholz at gmx.de> wrote:
> Hi,
> > Steve's  proposal was simple.  Drop Areas and use Ways that are
> > suitably tagged.  Osmarender has an implementation of this using SVG
> > as a proof of concept.
> >
> > Can you show me any examples where it doesn't work please?  I'll try
> > to make them work.
> We had a non working example:
> Make a map request on an "area", where the bounding box is completely
> within the area. (as example a view into a forest)
> You will not get the "area" returned, because a way does not need to be
> returned in this case.

So if you request a tiny bbox of a small part of a village, in a forest, in
the Borough of Medina on the Isle of Wight would you expect to get the area
that describes the forest, and an area that describes the borough and an
area that describes the whole coastline of the Isle of Wight and an area
that describes the boundary of the whole of the EC?

This is an extreme example, but you get the idea.  If you are interested in
something that is wholly *inside* an area then you probably don't need the
area.  If you are interested in something that is close to an area boundary
(like a seaside town) then you probably are interested in that part of the
area boundary that is within the bbox.  It seems to me that ways work
perfectly for this.

In fact, this example shows nicely, that areas are NOT ways, since areas
> are planear objects while ways are not.

Agreed, but the only information needed to *describe* an area is exactly the
same as that needed for a way.

If later, we like to add some
> request as "give me all areas this point is within" (which can be
> usefull), you don't want to get ways this way. Every feature that
> depends on the two-dimensional attribute of areas will have this
> problem.

"give me all ways with tag natural=forest that this point is within" - its
an identical problem.

I think the "simplicism" that Steves sees in traiting ways and areas
> equally is by accident and not a fundamental one.

Ciao, Imi.
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