[OSM-dev] Polygons in OSM don't necessarily comply to simple feature specification

Martijn van Exel mvexel at gmail.com
Wed Apr 16 22:28:32 BST 2008

Hi all,

I've been warming up as many of my colleagues to OSM as possible, and  
sometimes this comes back to me. Being GIS people, they have GIS  
requirements, and OSM was not devised specifically with GIS  
requirements in mind. That said, yesterday a colleague approached me  
asking why OSM data doesn't comply to the Simple Feature  
specification[1] (allowing easy import in for example SQL Server 2008,  
which he was actually attempting). The only exceptions apparently  
being that self-intersecting polygons are allowed in OSM. He found a  
couple hundred in the Netherlands' OSM data.

Is this something that is being considered? I guess it would be easy  
to check for self-intersection upon adding / changing a polygon. Is  
there a specific reason why self-intersecting geometries would be  
explicitly allowed?

Take care,

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simple_Features
martijn van exel -+- mvexel at gmail.com -+- http://www.schaaltreinen.nl/

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