[OSM-talk] Instead of voting

Russ Nelson nelson at crynwr.com
Sat Oct 10 06:44:11 BST 2009

Tobias Knerr writes:
 > Frederik Ramm:
 > > (5) Never ever invent a tag that you don't have a concrete use for.
 > "Never plan ahead, always wait until there are thousands of existing
 > tags that make creating a better solution harder"?

I believe this to be a misconception.  If there are five tags, all of
which have the same semantics, what harm is caused?  Perhaps there are
five ways to label this meaning.  For ease of editing, people should
use the tag they remember.

In time, people will discover that the semantics are identical
(probably users of the map data), and will edit the wiki documentation
for each tag, pointing to the other tags.  They'll tell $STEVEC and
he'll check to see if one use is dominating (e.g. yes), and if so, ask
that people not use the uncommon tags (e.g. true and 0).

 > Of course, I simply invented something to express this,

And did you document it in the wiki?  If not, then how is anybody else
to discern your meaning?  By reverse-engineering the tags into your
meaning?  But they weren't at your traffic island and don't know
exactly what you're trying to model.  Chances are good that they'll
think of something else whose attributes match your tags.  So they'll
be modelling one thing and you'll be modelling something else using
the same tags.

--my blog is at    http://blog.russnelson.com
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