[Tagging] Topographic Prominence for Peaks

Bill Ricker bill.n1vux at gmail.com
Mon Sep 24 01:27:53 UTC 2018

This all seems like highly specialized, technical data that is not of
general interest, as no one but peak-baggers understand the technical
definition. Many map users seeing this prominence=999m factoid would
jump to the incorrect conclusion that it was relative to where the
(lower of the) watershed(s) drains the mountain and thus a synonym for
the net rise from the valley.(Which is what i read the original post's
introductory remarks as meaning until I read further and got to the
technical definition.)

Is the OSM primary DB the right repository for this?
Have we accepted being the repository for everything that anyone wants to map?
(I don't remember hearing a change from "no".)

The definition that has Mt Everest (or K2, whichever is taller :-) )
have its "prominence" defined to sea-level and every other peak on the
combined continent is defined to a col which may or may not be
actually near is just weird. Yes Peak Baggers need some such rule to
avoid every boulder above 4000ft being defined as a Peak but is it a
useful definition for any other purpose?

Unless it's useful elsewhere, the peak baggers can extract OSM data
under the terms of the license and extend their own copy of the data
with "prominence" and other useful-to-them meta-data such as official
checklist name/number.

This Prominence definition is not a number which is signed on the peak
nor is it measured at the peak, but is derived data. Which with the
right setup, could could and should be calculated in bulk, not by
individual mappers. Which suggests to me further evidence it should be
computed and hosted at a downstream database clone that has DEMs and
mountaineer-specific rendering options.

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