[Tagging] Optical telecomunication cable tagging

Jean-Marc Liotier jm at liotier.org
Tue Mar 4 23:16:13 UTC 2014

On 04/03/2014 17:15, François Lacombe wrote:
> 2014-03-04 16:35 GMT+01:00 Jean-Marc Liotier <jm at liotier.org 
> <mailto:jm at liotier.org>>:
>     Along railways, motorways, high-voltage lines, riverbeds, roads,
>     sewers, tunnels... Pretty much every type of right-of-way is used
>     and the telecom link is part of it. Rarely does the
>     telecommunications link exist on its own, except as directly
>     buried cables that exist in rural locations.
> I don't agree. "Except in rural location" may concern some important 
> distance.

Yes, those rural cables buried directly are long ones and therefore 
represent a significant share of the network's total length. Opposite 
case: sewer-borne cables - short, numerous and urban.

> Come on Jean-Marc, @AlertePelleteuz on Twitter wouldn't report so many 
> optical fibre outage with an efficient and reliable French DICT system.

Indeed there is room for improvement - we are working on it.

> As a data producer I can't know what user would be finally interested in.
> I see things in my environment and looking for the best way to 
> legally, responsibly and technically add it to the map.

If you take a major drinking water pipeline such as Aqueduc de l'Avre or 
the TRAPIL fuel pipeline network, even though they are buried they are 
associated with a surface trail so clearly visible that one may almost 
consider setting landuse=pipeline on top of them. They are an important 
part of how one may describe their location, even though their main 
feature is underground.

In the case of telecommunications infrastructure, I believe that the 
issue is visibility. I am convinced that mapping features that are not 
visible directly or indirectly is not going to produce data that 
Openstreetmap contributors can maintain - and that it should therefore 
not be present.

That leaves many telecommunications features that are excellent 
Openstreetmap fodder: hosting centers, central offices, street cabinets 
- we had those discussions before. But visible cables or cable-bearing 
infrastructure are going to be a very rare exception to the norm of 
invisibility - better take that into account early to set limited goals 
and expectations... Unlike your effort on the electrical network which 
is turning out very nicely !

Well... Back on topic...

Let's take inspiration from 
https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:man_made%3Dpipeline and propose:


The German man_made=pipeline page already proposes type=telecom

And on the basis of 
https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:pipeline%3Dmarker you would have:


The key here is to set the hypothesis that you are going to map not 
cables but cable paths, which may contain more than one cable - in my 
view, that justifies using the pipeline tagging scheme.

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