[Tagging] Draft Proposal: Default Langauge Format

Paul Allen pla16021 at gmail.com
Tue Sep 18 22:58:05 UTC 2018

On Tue, Sep 18, 2018 at 11:24 PM, Joseph Eisenberg <
joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com> wrote:

> >”I'd rather have local languages mapped rather than the language the
> renderer 'should' use.”
> By recording each name in a separate “name:<code>=*” tag, database users
> and map makers will be able to pick the best name for their audience.

The best name for the audience is the one which matches the signage.  It
does me no good to see an English
translation of a Russian street sign.  If I'm trying to confirm my location
what I see on the map does not match what I
see on the sign.  It does me no good to ask a local because a translation,
although I can read it aloud, may sound
completely different to the Russian it is a translation of.

The only thing the map should render is the name as it is displayed on
signage.  It would also be useful if the
IPA characters representing how a local would pronounce that name is
present so applications could feed that
to text-to-speech.  It is also somewhat useful, for multilingual signage,
to use name:xx and name:yy to hold the individual
language components of that name.

There is an argument to be made that the query tool should return
appropriate language translations of tag keys
(way, node, shop, bank) but NOT their values.

The local name still needs to be specified so that database users know what
> name or names are actually used “on the ground” vs foreign names. The
> default language format tag makes this possible, but separates this
> function from the name=* tag. And the proposal includes a language:local
> tag so that all local names can be shown, even those that are less common
> or in a minority language.

No, no and thrice no.

If this proposal is implemented, map makers and database users will have
> many more options for using names in data or as map labels.

Why would they want to?  What possible use does it serve?  Most street
names and even place names are opaque.
They may once have had meaning but no longer do.  Near me is "Market Lane"
but at neither end of it is there a market.
Back in medieval times there was a market, perhaps, but it's been hundreds
of years since there was a market there.
Several miles from me is Felin Wen.  That's Welsh for "White Mill."  It's
not been a mill for many, many years.

For example, a vector map on a smartphone app could show names in the
> user’s language by default. But when the user selects a feature by tapping
> or clicking, the name on the local language would also be shown.

Wrong way around.  The sane thing to do is show the local name, because
that's what I'd be looking for on signage.
Maybe, if I'm bored, I'd like to know what it means, but I'd have to be
bored because the chances are very good that
knowing what it means won't help me in any way.

The more you explain this, the less I like it.

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