[Tagging] Do-it-yourself versus hardware stores

Colin Smale colin.smale at xs4all.nl
Fri Feb 12 23:09:46 UTC 2016

Couple of comments inline... 


On 2016-02-12 22:50, John Willis wrote:

> Javbw 
> On Feb 12, 2016, at 4:26 PM, Colin Smale <colin.smale at xs4all.nl> wrote:
>> John, I think you are talking from your US perspective.
> Yea, this is true.   
> It also lines up pretty well with Japan, but that is also a small part of OSM.  
>> From my UK perspective a builders merchant is usually both trade and retail. If I (as an individual consumer) wanted to buy a ton of bricks or timber, they would be more than happy to help, in a retail transaction.
> I'm sure there are suppliers that sell retail and ones that sell only b2b, (beyond, let's say, a membership store like Costco), so tagging the suppliers who deal only with B2B might be considered commercial instead of a shop, or some access=commercial for the shop (beyond membership would be useful then to define all the permutations. 
> On 2016-02-12 01:08, John Willis wrote: 
> A builder's merchant warehouse stuffed full of lumber is not a retail shop.  
> A Home Depot is. A big DIY shop.  
> Javbw.  
> Looking objectively, I see the following dimensions at the moment: 
> 1) what types of products (building? gardening? (power) tools?) 
> 2) on what scale (small quantities for consumers, or bulk for bigger projects?) 
> 3) to whom (trade only? retail only? mixed?) 
> My suggestion for how a shop can be modelled simplistically is as {3} plus a list of {1,2}.

Lots of categories are gonna get really complicated real fast,
especially when categories might have regional or language definitions.
Drawing the line by major category might be easier.  

Possibly, but my idea is to make the categories so objective that there
is minimal controversy. Hand tools, timber/lumber, roof coverings,
walling materials... something like that. 

The first stage must always be understanding reality. Only after that do
we get on to how to represent that in OSM. One obvious way is to map the
categories 1:1 to tags, something like power_tools=yes, timber=yes or
products=power_tools;timber or whatever syntax you choose. This soon
gets unwieldy of course, so shortcuts can be defined such as
shop=hardware which is defined as implying products=power_tools;timber.
If there is a shop which basically fits the profile for shop=hardware
except that they don't sell timber, then we can have shop=hardware with
timber=no for example. All the products/tags above are just to
illustrate the idea of course. 

If the profile of shop=hardware in terms of the
products/quantities/clientele differs by country, that's fine if we
document it in the wiki. We could follow the example for highway access
tags, where you can see what the default access tags are for a given
highway type in a given country: 

>> The fact that you call it a lumber yard and I call it a timber merchant is - assuming they are synonyms - should be for the renderer to sort out. Sometimes they are only partial synonyms (for (random hypothetical) example a UK timber merchant normally sells power tools but a US lumber yard normally doesn't), then looking at the geography would give a good first guess at what the shop sells. And then there will always be the special cases where a shop sells something out-of-character for that kind of shop. 
>> //colin
> For trying to define a builder supply or something, I think this is true - but giant DIY stores vs hardware stores? Are those similarly confusing?

Think first in terms of what they ARE (e.g. a shop which sells XYZ to
consumers). What they are CALLED is going to be different all over the
place. It will only get confusing if you use the word "timber" in the
American sense (trees and logs, not finished) and I interpret it in the
British sense (finished pieces of wood) whereby we are both unaware that
there is a potential for confusion. 

> It would be nice to come up with a summary page for all these construction/builder/home stores. 
> I'll have to check the wiki for builder supply, but to me builder supply usually these are rough goods (metal I beams, rebar, wall studs, glass) - Usually more "finished goods" - carpet, bathroom fixtures, appliances, etc have their own store names. 
> So: 
> Builder supply : focus on materials/piping/whatever their specialty (Tile, rock, lumber), excluding the finished goods stores (appliance, etc)  
> Hardware stores : focus on tools/consumables.  
> DIY store: focus on both materials & tools (fixtures, appliances as well)

Sounds good... I think the scale of the operation might/should come into
it somewhere. A simple hardware store may have one tin of each colour of
paint, but would offer to get you a larger quantity "in a couple of
days". A Builders merchant might have hundreds of tins in stock. 

> Drawing a couple lines in the sand like these should be pretty easy, especially if we remove large B2B only places from retail (because that is clearly not retail) and push them over into commercial. This would cover supply warehouses and other large scale commercial B2B vendors who do not operate retail/public locations.  
> Thoughts?

I agree that "shop" implies retail, so b2b only is not a shop in that
sense. But if the clientele is the only difference, shouldn't we tag
them the same except for that factor (access=public/business or some

> Javbw.
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