[OSM-talk] What3words

Colin Smale colin.smale at xs4all.nl
Wed Jul 13 09:35:13 UTC 2016

On 2016-07-13 10:23, Lester Caine wrote:

> W3W and OLC both have the same problem. They are trying to fix something
> which is not really broken.

I disagree with this... They are not trying to replace / fix up lat/lon,
they are providing a lingua franca for people to use when communicating.
It's an alternate form of address, not an alternate form of location.
They are intended for use by humans - so being short, memorable and
reliable is an advantage. This is where W3W wins it from OLC as
accurately remembering three words is easier than remembering a "random"
sequence of symbols, and when you read it out over the phone the chances
of a misunderstanding producing an existing but wrong result are

They are like postcodes, whereby pretty much all other components of an
address are redundant (except for maybe apartment numbers). 

Us westerners are spoilt with our wonderful postal addressing systems...
There are many, many areas in the world which don't have street names or
even house numbers. Telling someone where you live means a whole chunk
of descriptive text like "second red building on the left". 

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