Talk:GEOnet Names Server

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Multiple tagging schemes

It would seem that separate imports invented separate tagging schemes for this dataset. The table below presents the ID tag as a sample of the situation, with data according to Taginfo (note: "UFI" = "Unique Feature ID"):

GNS ID tag Uses Main Region(s) Notes
GNS:id about 55k Nigeria clearly and some other uses elsewhere in Africa UFI
gns_uni about 14k UK, Sweden, Philippines, Peru, Ecuador UNI ("Unique Name ID") used in this scheme instead of the UFI
gns:ufi almost 13k Somalia clearly, also near Estonia and in Canada
gns:UFI about 12k mostly in the vicinity of China, Ireland, and Oman
gns:uni about 7k Canada, part of S. America, India, Philippines, Papua New Guinea About 2k of these also have gns:ufi, which leaves about 5k that might be UNI-only
gns_ref about 2k Israel UFI

Other obvious variations such as gns_id and gns:id have a small number of uses. Mrwojo (talk) 05:19, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

Useful and useless tags

GNS tag example meaning useful?
gns:adm1=* 01
gns:cc1=* CA
gns:dms_lat=* 555500 UTM northing ? unnecessary
gns:dms_long=* -1153900 UTM easting ? unnecessary
gns:dsg=* PPL feature code needs translation
gns:fc=* P class code redundant to feature code
gns:jog=* NN11-03
gns:lat=* 55.916667 latitude duplicated information
gns:long=* -115.65 longitude duplicated information
gns:mgrs=* 11UNB8437597628 Military Grid Reference System unnecessary
gns:n:xx:full_name=* Atikameg duplicated information
gns:n:xx:full_name_nd=* Atikameg duplicated information
gns:n:xx:modify_date=* 1993-12-14
gns:n:xx:nt=* N
gns:n:xx:sort_name=* ATIKAMEG unnecessary
gns:rc=* 1
gns:ufi=* -560391
gns:uni=* -811987
gns:v:xx:full_name=* Utikumasis Lake duplicated information
gns:v:xx:full_name_nd=* Utikumasis Lake duplicated information
gns:v:xx:modify_date=* 1993-12-14
gns:v:xx:nt=* V
gns:v:xx:sort_name=* UTIKUMASISLAKE unnecessary

Minor annoyance: GEOnet's SSL/TLS certificate seems not to work (at least not outside the US)

This is just a minor annoyance, in case someone is wondering: when using the Chrome browser (and possibly any other based on Chrome, such as Brave), at the date of access, the http:// URL will be redirected to https://, but Chrome complains about an invalid certificate. Actually, the certificate seems to be legitimate, it just has been emitted by a military certificate authority, and possibly Chrome has some issues with it (at least, when viewing from outside the US), to the point that it prevents all accesses to GEOnet's servers.

Other browsers (such as Safari or Firefox) will complain (SEC_ERROR_UNKNOWN_ISSUER on Firefox) but still allow access.

GwynethLlewelyn (talk) 10:26, 17 May 2020 (UTC)

What is the point of dsg_string?

What is the point of GNS:dsg_string=populated place added to place=village?

place=village already carries info that it is a populated place, what is the point of repeating it in less specific tag? Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 18:32, 20 January 2021 (UTC)

In GNS `dsg` means Feature Designation Code, it maybe 2-5 characters so it may not be understood. These codes are explained in another tables in https://geonames.nga.mil/gns/html/rest/lookuptables.html#Designation%20Codes so we but the `dsg` code and `dsg name` --حبيشان (talk) 14:33, 18 April 2021 (UTC)

But if something as tagged as place=village then we know it is a populated place. What is being added by GNS:dsg_string=populated place ? Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 15:41, 18 April 2021 (UTC)
Somtimes in GNS same name used for the administrative unit (e.g district or state) (dsg code in GNS is 'ADM1' or 'ADM2') and for town (dsg code in GNS is 'PPL'). The location of the administrative unit is in the center of the area of it. And the location of town is in the center of town. Some previous importing tag administrative unit ('ADM1' and 'ADM2') as (place=locality). If some one else see the name he knows it as town name tagged as (place=locality) will fix it to (place=town) and will move the location to the nearest residential area on the imagery. We got a lot of mistakes because this bad importing. But when the dsg code is tagged we can prevent some of these mistakes.
For villages we have not a good benefit for GNS:dsg_name or GNS:dsg_code beacause most of GNS data are of type PPL (populated place). But there are many of GNS features that have not an equivalent in OSM so importers may tag it as (place=locality) but if he but the dsg_code and dsg_name it will be clearer to understand the feature. --حبيشان (talk) 14:46, 19 April 2021 (UTC)
In that case, maybe add another set of example tags for case where GNS:dsg_code makes sense? Maybe this imports should add skip GNS:dsg_string=populated place and add it in other cases?Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 17:44, 19 April 2021 (UTC)

What exactly is the meaning of dsg=WAD ?

In Arabic Wadi (واد) means just valley, regardless of water running through it or not, while in English it's usually used for a valley or gorge with an intermittent stream. Do we know what meaning is used in the GNS database? I'm asking because there are also dsg=STMI for intermittent stream and dsg=VAL for valley, so probably WAD means neither "just valley" nor "just intermittent stream". --Lyx (talk) 22:56, 19 April 2021 (UTC)

GNS explain 'WAD' as dry, intermittent, or ephemeral drainage course(s) commonly found in North Africa, and the Middle East, the channels of which are commonly shallow and braided and the location of node is at Mouth --حبيشان (talk) 14:11, 25 April 2021 (UTC)