[OSM-talk] Fwd: Nav4All navigation shut down by Navteq

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Mon Feb 1 21:48:49 GMT 2010


Richard Fairhurst wrote:
> It's beginning to happen already.
> As OSM's data structures (principally "creative and unexpected uses of
> relations") and tags become more complex, and as the project expands beyond
> the initial audience of geeks, the editing tools are inevitably starting to
> abstract away the nitty-gritty. In two years' time, most users won't know or
> care what the cycleway tags are; they'll just click the cycleway icon(s) in
> their editor and tick the appropriate options, and the editor will invisibly
> sort the tags out.

I don't think that will make the "we need fixed rules" fraction happy. 
We have renderers with fixed rules today - several of them - but that 
kind of fixed rules is not what they are looking for.

If we have several different editors with different icons, I don't think 
that will help.

You'll only move the fight to somewhere else. People will discuss 
endlessly about what should be on the tool tip of the cycleway button. 
"Use this only if there is a blue sign with a bicycle on it" - "But my 
country has no blue signs with bicycles".

Ulf wrote:
> Seems a lot of mappers would be quite happy to follow an at least more 
> fixed tagging scheme than what we currently have today.

You make this sound as if this is about the freedom of the new mappers. 
But they are, even today, free to follow any ruleset, cheatsheet, or 
book that they want to use. It's just that they don't get a guarantee 
that everyone else is using the same ruleset but that's ok - there might 
be rulesets much too complex for a newcomer, or the newcomer ruleset for 
rural Peru might be different from the one for urban Japan. Trying to 
make them all the same will needlessly reduce OSM's richness. These 
rulesets are unlikely to be devised by the same body; it would be too 
complex and the result would be less than optimal for everyone involved.

(In my OSM talks I like to show a communist-era poster about a five-year 
command economy plan. Command economy sounds like a good idea on paper 
but it turns out that the amount of planning required to get it to work 
is more than mankind can muster. The same, I think, is true for a 
world-wide OSM Ontology.)


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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