[OSM-dev] Proposal for OpenMetaMap - proper OSM import solution

Anthony osm at inbox.org
Sun Aug 21 17:52:57 BST 2011

On Sun, Aug 21, 2011 at 12:41 PM, Anthony <osm at inbox.org> wrote:
> On Sun, Aug 21, 2011 at 9:23 AM, Stefan Keller <sfkeller at gmail.com> wrote:
>> 2011/8/21 Frederik Ramm <frederik at remote.org>:
>>> Hi,
>>> Stefan Keller wrote:
>>>> What about storing the object ID (and the link properties) directly in
>>>> the OSM object?
>>> Wasn't the idea of *not* polluting the OSM database with external reference
>>> data at the very core of Jaak's proposal?
>> "Polluting" sounds to me a little undifferentiated. Maintaining such a
>> tag would support simplicity - and that's (another) core design
>> principle.
> Requiring OSM mappers to maintain links to external databases doesn't
> seem like a good idea.  It's hard enough keeping OSM up to date with
> what's actually in existence on the ground.  Adding a requirement to
> keep up to date with a potentially limitless number of external
> databases would make things too difficult.
> If you want to use OSM for this, I don't think anyone's going to stop
> you.  But the vast majority of people aren't going to help you,
> either.  What's almost surely going to happen is that the information
> is going to rot.  It's not going to be kept up to date.  When people
> delete and recreate elements to handle some sort of problem they're
> not going to copy the links (and/or they'll copy them incorrectly in
> some way you didn't expect them to).  Ways will get split and merged
> and split and merged over again, and the links are going to wind up
> pointing to things that you never intended them to point to.
> Take a look at TIGER TLIDs if you want a preview.

And so that I'm not being totally negative...

If you want to put something in OSM to use to match to an external
database, try to choose something that exists in reality.  If you're
matching two roads with slightly different names in each database, put
in an alternative_name=* tag on the OSM road (or fix the road name in
your local copy of the external database).  If you're matching two
McDonalds locations, change the name of each from name=McDonalds to
name=McDonalds #542 (or whatever).  Add addresses into OSM, and/or add
addresses into your local copy of the external database.

These are the kinds of things that people are going to maintain in
OSM.  Whereas external_link:HCPA=376284734 is not.

More information about the dev mailing list