[OSM-dev] Restrict key names on order to retain reusability of OSM

Alexander Wright silverfish at wright-family.me.uk
Fri Feb 15 09:13:49 GMT 2008

On Friday 15 February 2008 08:32:17 Stefan Keller wrote:
> Marcus reminded my that OSM allows for a building to be more than just a
> shop, but a gas-station a fuel-station, lit, car-wash, etc. That's right,
> but keep in mind, that I *don't* propose to change the current internal OSM
> schema and I *won't* restrict the number of key on your side. I propose
> only to restict the character set of keys.

That doesn't make technical sense. All db systems that I know of can cope with 
UTF-8 everywhere. Certainly MySQL allows me to create UTF-8 table names, 
column names, and data.

I can understand wanting to restrict the usage of tags to 'highway' rather 
than 'road', or some some translation of 'highway', that would allow import 
into a more structured db system, if required. But that doesn't mean that one 
of those 'allowed key names' couldn't be in mandarin.

Perhaps what we need is some sort of translation system that can translate the 
mandarin for 'highway' so that renderers don't have to implement all the 
translations for 'highway' in their rules.

Maybe too, the mapping tools can warn people of keys that will not currently 
render. Users can then choose whether the key is a misspelling, or decide 
that the keyname is correct for their needs.

Alex Wright.

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