Clarifying the term "elements"
The links in the "semantic elements" row are inconsistent in English: "point" and "area" are nouns, while "linear features" is a noun phrase and "relational" is an adjective. Furthermore, the distinction between "relation" and "relational" is unclear. The terms "linear features" and "relational" are rarely used this way in OSM contexts. (I'm also having difficulty translating these links into a language that lacks a good word for "features" and doesn't distinguish between "relation" and "relational".)
This wiki doesn't discuss the semantic feature types very often, other than perhaps areas. If we're going to start with this template, I'd recommend using iD's user-facing terminology as a starting point, since it has been translated successfully into many languages:
|Node||Point or vertex|
|Way||Line or area|
|Relation||Multipolygon, route, restriction, etc.|
- The Semantic elements page is about geometric elements in a more general way. You basically have a 1-dimensional element, a coordinate. Then, you can have an ordered collection of 1-dimensional elements, in some environments/markup languages referred to as line string. Thirdly, there is a 2-dimensional element, describing a polygon. Lastly, there is a collection of polygons to describe a set of polygons resembling an object. I tried to avoid any OSM terms because I am trying to make a connection between the general concept to be described on Semantic elements page and the very specific OSM elements. OSM relations mix up geometry (type=multipolygon) and relationships between objects (type=route). I am getting confused all the time, because I use OSM very often ;-). I need to think about this and I guess I should elaborate the semantic elements page first. --Tigerfell (Let's talk) 14:15, 4 November 2020 (UTC)
- Not every relation type is clearly geometric. Some relation types are more abstract, like Relation:enforcement (interactions between objects that may be laid out geometrically), Relation:network (non-geometric collection of coordinated routes), and Relation:destination_sign (temporal sequence of maneuvers and signs). Relation types layer semantics atop the data model in the same way that "line" and "area" are interpretations of the raw elements. – Minh Nguyễn 💬 23:35, 21 November 2020 (UTC)