[OSM-talk] handling street names in speech

Jo winfixit at gmail.com
Tue Jul 16 17:23:48 UTC 2019

When using OsmAnd in the streets of Brussels, it doesn't matter what the
language is set to, the French - Dutch combo is consistently pronounced

IPA would indeed solve that.

Editor support would be very welcome to enter the proper characters and to
listen to the result, both in JOSM and iD. And maybe even to help mappers
get started with the most likely pronunciation for a given language.

It would need to be used for ALL tags that contain names, not only the ones
that have 'deviant' pronunciation. In a mutlilingual system it's almost
impossible to define what is and what isn't 'deviating', as the
pronunciation rules are different across almost all languages.

For JOSM, should I propose this as GSoC project for next summer, or would
it not be that hard to implement by our overworked core developers? Or
would it make sense I
give it a go myself?


On Tue, Jul 16, 2019 at 7:10 PM Nuno Caldeira <nunocapelocaldeira at gmail.com>

> also on the the standard mapping convetions, its mentioned in bold :
> Don't use abbreviations
> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Editing_Standards_and_Conventions
> A terça, 16/07/2019, 18:05, Stefan Baebler <stefan.baebler at gmail.com>
> escreveu:
>> I think IPA (
>> https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Phonetic_Alphabet ) would address
>> that problem, but that would require many more tags, which are not trivial
>> for mappers to write.
>> Br,
>> Štefan
>> V tor., 16. jul. 2019 17:55 je oseba Colin Smale <colin.smale at xs4all.nl>
>> napisala:
>>> The reason for wanting to expand abbreviations in OSM is surely to avoid
>>> ambiguity, not specifically to aid pronunciation or recognition. In the
>>> case of "1e ..." in a certain language context, would that not be
>>> unambiguous? Would a speech synthesiser not know how it should be spoken in
>>> its working language?
>>> Slight digression: The question does arise of which rules to use to
>>> pronounce foreign names. If I am in Warsaw for example and my satnav
>>> started pronouncing street names in pure Polish I might not recognise any
>>> of them (apologies to any Poles in the audience). But how would it speak
>>> such that I would recognise it, if I was looking for a string with loads of
>>> Ws and Zs that means nothing to me? Use English rules to pronounce a Polish
>>> word?
>>> On the other hand, if I was in Paris, I would expect it to use French
>>> rules, because I understand French and using English rules would sound
>>> weird although it might well give a lot of laughs...
>>> On 2019-07-16 17:36, John Whelan wrote:
>>> This approach I like.  Name:expanded perhaps?
>>> To go back to earlier ideas.
>>> Expanding the name sounds sensible but unfortunately the street signs
>>> are posted with the abbreviation and some local mappers have a what is on
>>> the sign goes in the map mentality.  Also we have had discussions about
>>> street names in Canada before and the decision was what the municipality
>>> declares the street name is correct.  That was to do with either "rue
>>> Sparks" or should it be "Rue Sparks" in Quebec it would be one way but in
>>> Ontario the other.
>>> Thoughts
>>> Thanks John
>>> Colin Smale wrote on 2019-07-16 11:30 AM:
>>> On 2019-07-16 16:54, John Whelan wrote:
>>> One or two are problematic usually as the street name is an
>>> abbreviation.    For example 1e Avenue in French meaning First Avenue.
>>> Any suggestions on how these should be handled?  This particular
>>> application is aimed at partially sighted people but I feel we should be
>>> able to come up with a generic solution.
>>> Some kind of phonetic (IPA?) representation would be the ultimate
>>> generic solution. Here in NL (and I guess in many other countries) there
>>> are street names which are partially or entirely in other languages, and
>>> the expectation is that they are pronounced as such. For example, Boeing
>>> Avenue would sound completely weird if it were pronounced according to
>>> Dutch rules. Truly multi-lingual countries like Belgium and Switzerland
>>> should be able to make use of name:XX.
>>> If we had name:XX:ipa=* we would have a place to put it, but the client
>>> app would need to have a way of turning that into sounds. It will only be
>>> needed if the pronunciation deviates from the standard for the language in
>>> question, but speech synthesisers are never perfect and often make
>>> mistakes....
>>> https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/264239/is-there-any-online-tool-to-read-pronounce-ipa-and-apa-written-words
>>> Of course we will also need a way of entering IPA symbols....
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