[Talk-us] [Tagging] how to tag US townships?
brad.neuhauser at gmail.com
Wed Oct 20 17:30:48 BST 2010
On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 11:20 AM, Peter Budny <peterb at gatech.edu> wrote:
> "Andrew S. J. Sawyer" <assawyer at gmail.com> writes:
> > My thoughts are mixed in below.
> > On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 11:17, Peter Budny <peterb at gatech.edu> wrote:
> > Antony Pegg <antthelimey at gmail.com> writes:
> > > tagging admin area / populated centers / labels in USA seems to
> > > come down to two main tags:
> > >
> > > admin_level and place
> > Before you over-simplify, let me point out a couple things:
> > 1. Not all of the US is incorporated. In the Northeast, every tiny
> > of land is incorporated into a town or township or borough. But in
> > Southeast (and I presume elsewhere as well), there's lots of
> > unincorporated land, even in the vicinity of large cities. Look at
> > Atlanta, which still has lots of unincorporated area.
> > That's a big variation, and the map needs to be equally competent at
> > handling both regions.
> > Slight correction, not all land in the Northeast is incorporated. In New
> > Hampshire there are a handful of communities which are not
> > incorporated.
> I was exaggerating to illustrate the differences, but point taken.
> > 2. Defining how "important" a city is (and thus, how big its label on
> > the map should be) is a tricky thing to do. Population is certainly
> > large factor, but how do you define this? The City of Atlanta is the
> > #33 most populous city in the US, with 540,000 people, but the
> > metropolitan area is #9 with 5,475,000 people and is the largest
> > area in 800 miles.
> > There's also a recognition factor... the whole world knows where New
> > York is and would expect it to be fairly prominent on a map. Capitol
> > cities are considered to be "important" even when they're not very
> > prominent or populous. Etc.
> > It seems to me that admin_level handles the first point, except that
> > levels to cover all of the US doesn't give much granularity. Maybe
> > need to think about using the in-between levels to show more detail?
> > place= seems to be handling the second point, but not very well.
> > label sizes really be determined purely by population? By
> > What criteria should there be? I don't think the current scheme of
> > city/town/whatever is very good, because it's another instance of
> > hacking a British scheme onto a country with a very different history
> > and organization.
> > I agree that there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach that will work
> > with displaying/tagging named communities on the map. I think that a
> > combination of the size of the given area, the "admin_level" of the
> > given area (country, state, county, etc), population and
> > recognizability (capital cities, etc). The latter being the most
> > difficult to quantify in a manner in which many people would agree on
> > (less capital cities).
> I forgot to mention control cities (
> These are cities that are designated for use on highway signs to
> indicate which direction you're heading. These should definitely appear
> on the map, even if they're relatively small cities (e.g. Valdosta,
> > However, I agree that a ratio of area, "admin_level" and population
> > could take care of most cases.
> This gets me wondering if maybe there's some way to do it more
> automatically. For instance, it should be easy to find data sources
> for population, area, and lists of "global cities"
> (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_city) and control cities. Maybe
> there should be a process just before the renderer that takes in that
> information and decides how to label cities automatically. That keeps
> the OSM database down to the basics.
> Peter Budny \
> Georgia Tech \
> CS PhD student \
If you haven't seen it, the 41Latitude blog had an earlier post about
getting a good density of US city names at different zoom levels--it was in
reference to Bing maps, but the same ideas apply:
In his analysis, using the Census' Urban Clusters and Micropolitan
Statistical Areas looked useful. Worth a read, if you're still following
this thread. :)
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