[Tagging] Removing name_1 and alt_name_1 from Wiki

Hakuch hakuch at posteo.de
Sun Jan 17 19:51:35 UTC 2016

just mentioning that there is another discussion thread for this topic
on the list:


On 10.01.2016 22:29, moltonel 3x Combo wrote:
> On 9 January 2016 at 18:50, Hakuch <hakuch at posteo.de> wrote:
>> I propose, to remove the tagging of name_1 and alt_name_1 from the wiki.
> I disagree.
>> **better use diverse name-tags**
> Diverse name tags are a good thing when there is some semantic
> difference between names, but often enough there's no semantic
> differences between various alternatives and we need to put a list of
> values for the same tag. The question of wether to use semicolons or
> tag suffixes is independant from that.
>> **semicolons instead of _1 suffixes**
>> Their only advantage is
>> the better legibility for human eyes, thats a reason why some people may
>> favour them over the semicolon. But for mechanical computation, it is
>> easier to regex the semicolon than crawling through all possible
>> existing suffixed tags.
> Actually to my human eyes, both semicolons and suffixes are equally
> ugly (but pragmatic). It's for processing that suffixes are supperior:
> * Spliting by semicolons (no regexp needed :p) is easy but naive,
> because semicolons are sometimes part of the actual value.
> * One workaround is to use some kind of escape character, but this is
> an impementation/spec minefield that we'll never get right.
> * Another is to maintain a whitelist of tags that can be split by
> semicolon, but it's extra work and everybody'll have a different list.
> * Tag suffixes on the other hand can be implemented easily, for all
> tags without distinction, and do not suffer from false-positives.
> * If a consumer forgot to implement multivalue names, he'll have
> incorrect data in the semicolon case and incomplete data in the suffix
> case. Incomplete is usually better than incorrect, but it does depend
> on the usecase.
>> Furthermore the semicolon is already established
>> and has been accepted for such special cases with multiple values.
> So is the suffix, so this isn't a useful argument.
>> **iD-Editor problem**
>> unfortunately, the iD-editor is creating such prefixed tags and is
>> training newbies to use them as a good tagging practice. When you use
>> the raw-tag-editor and tries to add an already existing tag, iD does not
>> throw any error or information but adds the tag with a suffixed number
>> like _1 or higher.
> That does sound like a pretty bad behavior.
>> It suggests to the unexperienced mapper, that this is a usable method to
>> add multiple values,
> It is :)
>> although this suffixing is only made to prevent the
>> user of deleting data.
>> We still couldn't convince the developer, that this suffixing method
>> leads new mappers to bad practice
>> (https://github.com/openstreetmap/iD/issues/2896).
> I'm not a fan of the developer's decision here. Always avoiding
> warnings complicates UI design a lot. Not sure what to propose to them
> instead, I'm not an iD user and whatever I suggest probably would feel
> odd in an iD context.
> That said, it is an iD UI issue, not really on topic ? But if you
> insist in using this example in the semicolon vs suffix debate, it's
> an argument for keeping suffixes, because suffix-aware consumers will
> be able to make some sense of a name_1 accidentally created by iD.
>> **how the name_1 and alt_name_1 came to the wiki-heaven**
>> But actually, my intention was to propose the removing or marking of
>> name_1 and alt_name_1 tags in the wiki (the iD problem should be
>> discussed in a new topic). Inititally, the alt_name_1 tag has been added
>> by a Nominatim developer in Nov'14. The origin for this decision can be
>> found in this discussion on talk
>> (https://www.mail-archive.com/talk%40openstreetmap.org/msg50648.html)
>> that took place in Sept'14.
>> There, a member of the HOT team described a problem, that their manual
>> massedit caused the tags alt_name:2 and alt_name_2. Now he wants to have
>> a mechanical edit to change all alt_name:2 to alt_name_2, preferably
>> worldwide. That also caused a readable discussion about the sense of
>> suffixed tags. But already before starting that discussion, the author
>> asked the nominatim team for adding the alt_name_x tags
>> to the nominatim search. And the Nominatim developer did so and
>> consequently added it two month later to the wiki.
>> Today there are over 5500 alt_name_1 tags. But only a few of them
>> outside of the mentioned HOT-area in western africa. Nearly half of
>> them, are NOT combinated with alt_name!
>> The tag name_1 was not proposed in any way, this one has only been added
>> in Aug'15 because it exists in the database. By comment "Document
>> de-facto name_N variant". That is true, currently there are about
>> 800.000 tags with name_1. But when you look on the taginfo map, or the
>> combinations, you can see that almost each of them results from the
>> Tiger-Import (https://taginfo.openstreetmap.org/keys/name_1#map,
>> https://taginfo.openstreetmap.org/keys/name_1#combinations). That
>> tagging-scheme should not be proposed in the wiki for using.
> So name_1 is a de-facto standard. So what ? The scheme should be
> evaluated on its own merit and current usage (which is *not* just
> TIGER even though that import has a lot of it), not on its genesis. At
> least you can trace the suffix scheme's origin; the use of the
> semicolon certainly pre-existed any wiki voting/approval process (?).
>> It even makes less sense to have alt_name_1 AND name_1 because they do
>> not differ in any way.
> Agree on that point. If you've got more than two names, alt_name_1 is awfull.
>> **tl;dr**
>> I propose removing the name_1 and alt_name_1 from the Map Features or
>> rather marking them and to explain that and why they should not be used.
> Again, disagree.
>> And after that we can convince iD Editor to stop creating them
>> automatically :)
> Probably agree, I'd need to use iD to really form an opinion :p


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