[Tagging] spring:type=hot deprecation

stevea steveaOSM at softworkers.com
Fri Jan 8 16:58:29 UTC 2021

On Jan 8, 2021, at 7:31 AM, nathan case <nathancase at outlook.com> wrote:
> My apologies if this has been covered previously.
> natural=water is described as the tag for “Any inland body of water, from natural such as a lake or pond to artificial like a moat or canal” where “The type of water body can be specified with water=*”.
> This hot_springs thread got me questioning why springs aren’t therefore included in the water tag?  Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_of_water) suggests it, along with a few other water features that are currently tagged as “natural=*”, should perhaps be tagged as “natural=water, water=*”
> Specifically, the following inland water features listed in “natural=*”:
> wetland (perhaps an ambiguous one though as coastal wetlands aren’t inland)
> glacier (ice is water)
> spring (and therefore hot_spring too)
> are all defined as bodies of water. So why are they not included in the water tag, which covers “any” inland body of water?

As Joseph just wrote, "tags are free."  We have free-form, coinable, plastic tagging, so that's what people do.  (For the most part, the wiki is one tool we use to "keep it all straight" and help "align alikes" into sensible categories).  In a project like OSM where this is true, people are far, far less likely to create-on-the-fly the sort of formal ontology that your question posits.  Although, there are some after-the-fact efforts to re-categorize in the manner of your question, such semantic detangling is a process fraught with difficulty, especially in a mindspace (and namespace) governed by consensus.

I do not wish to impart a sense of hopelessness, more a scope of the size of the question asked.


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