Posts Tagged ‘street address’

UK Addressing, The Non Golden Rules of Geo or Help! My County Doesn’t Exist (Yahoo!)

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

489px-gray1824middlesex1

[Editor's note: Amusing and practical example of geographic taxonomy, topology with the example of England versus United Kingdom.]

Republished from Yahoo! Geo.
By Gary Gale, Head of UK Engineering, Yahoo! Geo Technologies

George Bernard Shaw once said the golden rule is that there are no golden rules and at Geo Technologies we understand that there is no one golden rule for Geo and so we try to capture and express the world’s geography as it is used and called by the world’s people. Despite the pronouncement on golden rules, a significant proportion of the conversations we have with people about Geo lend themselves to the Six Non Golden Rules of Geo, namely that:

  1. Any attempt to codify a series of geo rules into a formal, one size fits all, taxonomy will fail due to Rule 2.
  2. Geo is bizarre, odd, eclectic and utterly human.
  3. People will in the main agree with Rule 1 with the exception of the rules governing their own region, area or country, which they will think are perfectly logical.
  4. People will, in the main, think that postal, administrative and colloquial hiearachies are one and the same thing and will overlap.
  5. Taking Rule 4 into account, they will then attempt to codify a one size fits all geo taxonomy.
  6. There is no Rule 6, see Rule 1.

I codified these rules after a conversation last week, via Twitter and Yahoo! Messenger, with Andrew Woods, a US based developer who was, understandably, confused by the vagaries of the how addresses work in the UK. Andrew’s blog contains the full context but can be distilled into three key questions:

  • If the country is The United Kingdom, how come the ISO 3166-2 code is GB?
  • If the country is The United Kingdom, is England a country?
  • If England is a country, do I use it in an address?

As a US developer, Andrew is naturally fluent with the US style of addressing, with all of its’ localised and regional exceptions. This is a good example of both Rules 3 and 4 in the real world; most people in the US will use number, street, city, State and ZIP for specifying an address. But how does this transfer to the UK? What’s the equivalent of a State … England, Scotland or Wales? Let’s try to answer some of these problems:

Continue reading at Yahoo! Geo . . .

Family Gets a New Address In Bethesda — Without Moving (Wash Post)

Friday, June 19th, 2009

newbethesdaaddress[Editor's note: Street addresses are just mental convienences, after all. Why don't we all memorize our longitude and latitude coordinates, yo?]

Republished from The Washington Post.
By Miranda S. Spivack. Wednesday, June 17, 2009

It was painful enough for the Beyersdorfer family to learn that Montgomery County had approved a builder’s plans to tear down their neighbor’s house and replace it with two larger ones. But then, on May 29, came a terse form letter with startling news:

Effective immediately, the address for the suburban split-level the Beyersdorfers have occupied for 43 years is no longer 6211 Wedgewood Rd. That address now belongs to one of the two unbuilt houses next door. The Beyersdorfer house has been bumped to 6213.

It was, the letter said, simply a matter of public safety. The numbering system is designed to help emergency vehicle drivers easily find addresses, the letter said, and a sequential system is the best way to do that.

Or, as a county planning official told Anne Beyersdorfer one recent day as she questioned the decision, “sometimes you just don’t have any options.” And no, the county doesn’t allow 6209 1/2 or 6209A and 6209B.

“That’s just rude,” Beyersdorfer said. “How can there be no options?”

Continue reading at The Washington Post . . .