[Imports-us] Address and Building Data Conflatation

Paul Norman penorman at mac.com
Mon Jul 15 19:59:15 UTC 2013

> From: Serge Wroclawski [mailto:emacsen at gmail.com]
> Sent: Monday, July 15, 2013 12:40 PM
> To: Brian H Wilson
> Cc: Imports US
> Subject: Re: [Imports-us] Address and Building Data Conflatation
> In fact the examples given cover the exact situation you're envisioning.
> > Doesn't having a mix of points and polygons tagged in the same area
> > make things confusing? Maybe this is just because I am new at OSM, so
> > I am not used to having a single heterogeneous data set.
> I think this is a three part question:
> ...
> 3. Is it confusing to other mappers?
> ...
> And for other mappers- I think naked nodes are confusing because they
> don't correspond to a physical, observable object. Maybe that's a
> difference between the way a GIS person thinks, and an OSM person.

This is backed up by what I've seen - they end up recreating the address
when surveying a POI or building.

We're never going to be able to programmatically match all addresses because
there are some weird cases out there that a computer can't handle, but if we
can get the 90% of simple one main largest building and one address cases
handled, that's most of the work.

For a large address import where you also have building data, both in OSM
and from an external source, these are my current thoughts

- Conflate external addresses and external buildings

- Remove buildings from the conflated set that duplicate OSM, in either
geometry or address

- Import said buildings

- Depending on scale, look at replacing OSM buildings with conflated
buildings, purely on geometry criteria

- Take complete address data and updated OSM data and run it through

- Apply resulting diffs to OSM

addressmerge will then produce a .osm file of addresses that it failed to
merge onto existing features and did not exist in OSM. This could then be

Of course you'd want to apply copious quality checks at every stage

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