[Tagging] The current problem with tagging

Tobias Knerr osm at tobias-knerr.de
Sun Oct 18 14:18:42 BST 2009

John Smith:
> the wiki allows
> people to easily document things, but you can't easily find them and
> I'm talking about everyone here, especially those that are only likely
> to use the map features page.

Can you give an example here? I actually don't know what situation you
are thinking about. Answering "what does tag x mean" is easy. "How do I
tag y" can usually be answered using the wiki search (or browser search
on Map Features). Tags that can used in addition to a given feature/tag
are listed, too, and it's not that hard to just manually add a new tag
there. So what's missing here?

>>From there if an API could be created for editors we could do things
> like mousing over a tag in JOSM/potlatch then throws up a page of text
> describing the tag.

Why do we need an API for this? The wiki pages already have standardized
names and standardized templates, so it should be possible to extract
information from there.

> Any tags the are entered that aren't in the database could generate a
> prompt asking people to document it on the spot,

Considering that ambiguous tag definitions are probably the worst
tagging problem we have to deal with in the long run, I'm not sure
whether the definitions created this way wouldn't cause more problems
than they would solve.

Tobias Knerr

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