[OSM-dev] A proposal for linking multiple ways into a virtual polygon

Jon Burgess jburgess777 at googlemail.com
Wed May 16 19:44:31 BST 2007

On Wed, 2007-05-16 at 16:35 +0100, 80n wrote:
> Jon
> On 5/16/07, Jon Burgess <jburgess777 at googlemail.com> wrote:
>         On 16/05/07, 80n <80n80n at gmail.com> wrote:
>         > The node Id of the last node in the way will always be the
>         same as the node
>         > Id for the first node in the next way.  There is not any
>         real need to add 
>         > linkage tags, the information is already present.
>         >
>         > The only exception would be if the area was connected to
>         some other way as
>         > well.  This would be fairly rare I think.
>         >
>         As I see it, providing redundant data is great for error
>         detection and 
>         recovery. See my earlier comments about being able to report
>         exactly
>         which way ID seems to have been deleted.
>         It also allows any tool to iterate a coastline or other
>         polygon in
>         either direction. A single linked list would require much more
>         effort 
>         in this case.
>         Not providing any information about the links requires any
>         tool which
>         wants to re-join ways to do a non-trivial amount of work to
>         infer the
>         adjoining ways. See my earlier arguments.
> Surely, finding the next way that is attached to the end node of the
> current way is trivial?  What difficulty are you contemplating?
The amount of CPU time needed to process a planet.osm file in one go.

> Select the to node of the last segment in the current way. 

- One node selected. Easy and quick.

> Select all segments that have this node as its from node. 

- Iterate 10M segments. Easy, but not quick.

> Select all ways that use this segment.  

- Iterate 600k ways. Easy, but not quick.

> If there is more than one way then error, otherwise you have your next
> way. 
- We'd expect exactly 2 ways if we include the one we are trying to

- Repeat all the above steps 600k times.

> Is this hard to do with SQL or something?

No. It is tricky to do in a CPU efficient way using the data structures
which osm2pgsql currently uses to hold the planet.osm file while
determining the geometries that it needs to write to the DB.

The osm2pgsql code does not perform any queries on the DB while it is
generating the data.

Yes these things can be solved. The CPU effort to do so would be
significantly reduce if the adjoing way IDs were stored in the way key
osm2pgsql does have the benefit of being able to rely on the PostgreSQL
geometrey queries which almost certainly can be used to do this all
quite quickly, but my concern was that other tools may not find it so

I don't want to put too much effort into an optimised solution if it is
quickly realised that the links should be added to the DB and my
solution is a waste of effort.



More information about the dev mailing list