Posted Sep 29, 2009 22:23 UTC (Tue) by roelofs
Parent article: TomTom unveils OpenLR location-referencing format
OpenLR seems remarkably automobile-centric for a standard proposed by a European company. Virtually everything refers to roads; there is no concept of a bicycle-only, bike/pedestrian-only, or pedestrian-only path. (The only almost-exception is the TRAFFICSQUARE form of way, which describes "an open area ... which is used for non-traffic purposes," but even that is "(partly) enclosed by roads" and obviously doesn't capture the bike- or pedestrian-path concept.)
One of the major mapping services (Google, I think) recently noted several of the problems with such an approach: there are roads and bridges on which pedestrians and/or bicycles are banned (e.g., freeways); roads on which vehicles are restricted to a single direction but pedestrians (and possibly bikes) aren't; and obviously paths, walkways, etc., on which vehicles are banned (and perhaps also on which bicycles are banned or impractical, such as stairways, trains/subways, or the Pacific Crest Trail). If you're explicitly looking for a bike route to work or a pedestrian path in a remote tourist location, vehicle-oriented GPS receivers and mapping services are often useless.
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