[OSM-dev] Ponderings about an improved tagging scheme

Steve Hill steve at nexusuk.org
Thu Feb 19 22:54:09 GMT 2009

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009, Frederik Ramm wrote:

> Your concept is utterly unworkable of course with the current software 
> landscape,

Would you like to explain why it is utterly unworkable?

> "Instead of having a geometric object with some properties, we instead think 
> of objects with some properties (like “this is a museum” and “this has the 
> name Natural History Museum”) and the added property of “this object is 
> positioned at such and such a location”. ... So the geometry is not the 
> object itself, as it is now, but it is just one property of some kind of 
> abstract object."

I'm not sure what you mean by this - Every object on a map is a geometric 
object, so what are you claiming is the difference between "a geometric 
object with some properties" and an "object with some properties"?

> I believe this is indeed the way many pros are doing it - there is an object 
> and the geometry is one of many properties of the object. It is a concept to 
> keep in mind for the more distant future; I don't think we should aim to do 
> it with the current implementation of relations though.

I think you are somehow misunderstanding what I proposed - my idea really 
isn't that different from what we have now.  For example, at the moment 
you can create some ways and group them into a relation which you tag as a 
bus route, or a cycle route, etc.

I am essentially suggesting 2 things:

1. the tagging schemes between relations and other objects are unified. 
So the tags "type=road, classification=primary", etc. can be applied to 
either a way, or a relation consisting of ways.

2. the "type" tag can be used to define a context for normal objects, much 
as it does for relations.  So rather than having to understand that 
a large number of fairly arbitrary tags, such as "highway=road" and 
"amenity=school" define what the object is, you now only have to know 
that the "type" tag is going to define what the object is.

Both of these points seem compeltely workable with the current software.

  - Steve
    xmpp:steve at nexusuk.org   sip:steve at nexusuk.org   http://www.nexusuk.org/

      Servatis a periculum, servatis a maleficum - Whisper, Evanescence

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