[talk-au] Topic B: inconsistencies, idiosynchrosies and vagueness

Warin 61sundowner at gmail.com
Sat Sep 21 03:05:19 UTC 2019

There are inconsistencies from one place to another around the world.
These idiosyncrasies are what make the world so interesting for travellers.
OSM needs to cater for that.

Reading the OSM wiki can be reading the last change by some editor 
'fixing' it for their view, which may well be fine for their part of the 
world but not meet your view out your window.
Some mappers now ignore the wiki.

For Australian specific thing - this list and the wiki guidelines are 
your friend.
Changing the Australian Guide wiki is usually done by consultation here, 
so you get a broader view than a single idea.

On the general wiki .. vagueness may well be in place to allow for these 
world variations. Changing it is difficult in that others may object to 
your changes... the problem becomes one of reaching an agreement.. and 
then someone else objects etc.

On 21/09/19 12:02, Sebastian S. wrote:
> Hi Andrew, I fully, whole heartedly agreed.
> Wiki is supposed so evolve.
> Gardening to fix little broken or spelling issues.
> Bigger changes are best outlined here on the list to capture common 
> sentiment.
> I must admit I often just look up things in the wiki, so for me it is 
> mostly a reference and it takes more commitment to actually improve. 
> To update e.g. tagging guideline aspects one would first need to step 
> back, which is what you seem to have done.
> -- 
> Sent from my Android device with K-9 Mail. Please excuse my brevity.
> On 21 September 2019 10:45:44 am AEST, Andrew Harvey 
> <andrew.harvey4 at gmail.com> wrote:
>     I completely agree the "how to map" of OpenStreetMap (not just
>     tags, but also things like when to split a highway, when to snap
>     nodes, what should be mapped etc) is full of "inconsistencies,
>     idiosyncrasies and vagueness". But when I look at where OSM is
>     today I think we've done a pretty amazing job all things
>     considered, yes we still have much more work to do, but being a
>     mostly volunteer self organising community the best way to make
>     OSM stronger is hands on driving this change.
>     I think the easiest way to get started is improving documentation
>     on the wiki, documenting all the different "how to map" concepts
>     used today, documenting these "inconsistencies, idiosyncrasies and
>     vagueness", then as a community we can refine approaches to
>     eventually resolve these issues. There's a lot of precedent in OSM
>     for deprecating things when we have better/more commonly used.
>     Any time you encounter an inconsistencies I'd encourage you to
>     raise it, either on the globally tagging list, or if it's local
>     here on talk-au.
>     On Sat, 21 Sep 2019 at 09:57, Herbert.Remi via Talk-au
>     <talk-au at openstreetmap.org <mailto:talk-au at openstreetmap.org>> wrote:
>         A special thank you for the links yesterday. I have read them.
>         "Australian Tagging Guidelines" and "Good practice" are worth
>         knowing and I am very grateful for our forefathers that put so
>         much effort into writing these documents. It worth noting,
>         however, when you compared the two that they are riddled with
>         inconsistencies, idiosyncrasies and vagueness. It is worth
>         remembering this when we experience another of those "I am
>         right, you are wrong" conversations.
>         Reading "Australian Tagging Guidelines," I thought of Geffory
>         Rush from Pirates of the Carribean, "they are more guidelines
>         than rules." Unapproved tracktypes for 4WD (inventing tags,
>         don't exist but perhaps they should) and small towns called
>         cities so they appear the map (mapping for the renderer), and
>         the principle of "we map what is there" but then don't map
>         what is private (often difficult to verify too). The
>         descriptions are full of contradictions and vagueness. The
>         "Lifecycle prefix" wikitext needs more work, particularly
>         examples of use to get consistency in its application. As much
>         of it is not rendered (Mapnik), mapping it could be considered
>         as a low priority.
>         Harry Wood's blog "community smoothness" addresses vagueness
>         in language and how everybody has a different opinion of what
>         a text means. That is not new of course and with certainty,
>         everybody has an opinion about what the right way is. It is
>         human nature, when it comes to our own beliefs, every evidence
>         supporting it is embraced and every evidence against excluded.
>         Finally, it is easy to forget that the Wiki is written in
>         dozens of different languages and there will be
>         inconsistencies between Wiki entries in different languages. I
>         can verify that for two. English and German wiki pages
>         descriptions are not surprisingly culture-specific (see also
>         the chemist/pharmacy/drug store discussion for AU/UK/US
>         comparison).
>         Despite our best efforts inconsistencies, idiosyncrasies and
>         vagueness will reign in the OSM anarchy.
>         _______________________________________________

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