[Talk-us] Highway Tagging Consensus to Improve OSM (and address some of 41 latitude's concerns)

Phil! Gold phil_g at pobox.com
Fri Oct 15 18:47:25 BST 2010

* Val Kartchner <val42k at gmail.com> [2010-10-15 10:47 -0600]:
> > == "Inconsistent State Prefixes" ==
> We should find some consistent way to do it such that it is easy for a
> renderer to parse.  Then the renderers will need to be changed to use
> them.  Once this is done, people will be more likely to enter them
> properly since they will show up in a special way.

In my opinion, the best way to tag for parsing is to use the state postal
codes.  The only unambiguous way to tag for county roads would be the
state postal code, a colon, and another code unique within that state,
probably the county abbreviation for county roads.  This would look
absolutely horrible when rendered with the current rules, though, so few
people would do it.

Fortunately, I don't think that the ref= tag needs to be used for parsing,
because I think the route relations are superior is just about every way
for most parsing and processing needs.  Unfortunately, as far as I can
tell, the current rendering chain would need to be modified significantly
in order to use them for rendering via Mapnik.  I see standardizing the
road ref= tags as a stopgap measure to tide the rendering over until it
can use route relations.

> However, a sign with this designation is not used very much.  The much
> more commonly used signage is "67" is the state highway shield (a white
> beehive on a black background).

Shield rendering has its own complications, though if it were implemented
we could basically stop caring about the aesthetics of the ref= tags.  (If
you had to use "US:UT 67" to get a shield, most people would do it that
way.)  I personally think shields should be rendered from the route
relations, but as I mentioned above, that seems a pipe dream at the

...computer contrarian of the first order... / http://aperiodic.net/phil/
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