[Talk-us] Why do city names display in the local language at osm.org?

Toby Murray toby.murray at gmail.com
Mon Dec 21 16:07:09 UTC 2015


Yeah, the tiles on osm.org just straight up render the name=* tag
which is supposed to contain the name of an object in the primary
language of the area that it is in.

I know Wikipedia has done some work on localizing maps. I believe the
way they do it is to render a map without any labels and then have
language-specific layers that have nothing but the names on them. The
client chooses which name layer to load on top of the label-less base
layer.

I'm guessing there are better ways to handle this if you go the route
of using vector tiles instead of bitmaps...

Toby


On Mon, Dec 21, 2015 at 9:40 AM, Steve Friedl <steve at unixwiz.net> wrote:
> Mapping tiles are not generated on a per-user basis; they are generated for
> all users and shared.  The rendering software has to make intelligent
> decisions about how to make the maps look reasonable for everybody, and my
> suspicion is that things like city names are chosen from the local language
> of the country that the city is within, on the grounds that most people
> looking at a city live in the country.
>
>
>
> It would be great if tiles were rendered customly for everybody (I’d be able
> to see elevations in feet instead of meters), but that’s not how this one
> works.
>
>
>
> Steve
>
>
>
> From: Alan Bragg [mailto:alan.d.bragg at gmail.com]
> Sent: Monday, December 21, 2015 7:32 AM
> To: talk-us at openstreetmap.org Openstreetmap <talk-us at openstreetmap.org>
> Subject: [Talk-us] Why do city names display in the local language at
> osm.org?
>
>
>
> My preferred language is set to "en"
>
> For example Florence Italy displays as Firenze even though it's tagged with
> many languages including en:Florence
>
> I get the same display in both the  chrome and internet explorer browsers.
>
>
>
>
>
>
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