Category talk:Split cities

From Geohashing

Check out Adelaide, Australia, it has a pretty solid layout that I blatantly stole for Twin Cities, Minnesota. Redsai 21:51, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

Split Cities Templates

Hey folks, just thought I'd announce two templates joannac and I created:

They are just like Template:Graticule, but are specially designed for cities that occupy two graticules.

Having just seen that four-graticule straddlers exist, I may consider another template... but not today. -- Matty K 13:08, 21 October 2008 (UTC)

Actually, I couldn't let it just sit there. So, Template:GraticuleQ. The documentation includes a working example for Twin Cities, Minnesota. --Matty K 13:32, 21 October 2008 (UTC)

PROPOSAL: Split the split city graticule pages.

I would like to propose the following:

  • To transform the aggregated split city graticule pages into separate graticule pages.
  • To create separate pages for communities or cities which wish to do a joint planning or have a joint activity report.

Cross-graticule communities may then decide to include the content of the joint planning/activity report page on all graticule pages in question (you can do this with regular pages just as you can do with templates), or alternatively to just set up a link to their community and a note which points interested people in the right direction. Content from active split city pages can be moved to the joint page.

I propose this mainly for the following reasons:

  • Split city pages are not automatically maintained in the case of (formally or factually) inactive graticules.
  • The split city approach stems from a time when there were few active graticules which usually were hosting a single community. I think it is time to separate these concepts.


support, oppose, needs work, and a short comment please.

  • support (ftr) -- relet 11:55, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
  • support --Ekorren 12:11, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
  • support - Danatar 13:01, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Somewhere between support and DNO --aperfectring 13:13, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Needs work -Srs0 14:24, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
    • Switched to somewhere between support and DNO after discussion. -Srs0 14:58, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Undecided : Since I'm basically maintaining the Melbourne, Australia split city, I'll have a think about my opinion --mykaDragonBlue [- i have no sig -] 09:14, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
  • DNO : I think it's fine for some graticule pages to consist merely of redirects to the community. -Robyn 21:06, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose -- Let locals decide, be friendly to newcomers -- Jevanyn 15:37, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose -- While I like the general concept, I currently maintain Adelaide, Australia, and think it's easier for newcomers (I desperately want some) as it is. -- UnwiseOwl 05:17, 10 November 2009 (UTC)


your ideas, rants and questions here

I never saw much sense in combining several graticule pages into one only because there was a city which has parts in both. There usually are lots of towns which get "incorporated" into those combined pages although they are not part of the split city. E.g. there is totally no sense in combining Lübeck and Rotenburg/Wümme into one page, is there? Geohashing is about coordinates and graticules, and not about cities, anyway. So, it might be convenient for a city community to have one combined page, but it's totally against the systematics and, IMHO, also slightly against the spirit of geohashing, and it's totally dumb for the parts of the graticules which are not even close to the city in question. --Ekorren 12:11, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Same here. I live near a graticule border and my city has a part in the graticule east of it, but the graticules have different names and it works fine that way. When I plan to visit a hashpoint e.g. in the eastern graticule, I note it on that graticule's page. If somebody is interested in visiting a certain graticule, he/she can watch that graticule's page and will find the note that way. People from the graticule border on the western side of my graticule will probably not be interested in hashpoints to the east and won't watch that page. That way they won't be bothered by any "graticule page has been changed" emails; If there was only one common page for both graticules, every second expedition would be too far away (= more than 1°) for them to go. - Danatar 13:01, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

First off, I agree with you two. However, there are some cities which are particularly badly affected by being split, e.g. Denver, Colorado. Personally, I could see them splitting it into 2 and I think 4 is overkill in that case, but with the southern 2 graticules of the Denver split, the city is quite evenly cut into two parts. I can definitely see why people in Denver would want to have a single page for planning purposes, but the northern two graticules don't seem to me like they belong in that joint city. I wouldn't go so far as to say that having a split-city page is against the spirit of geohashing in and of itself, but how they are currently used does seem a little against the spirit, in that they tend to be used solely to get the closest point, which will usually end up in the city itself. Having only split-city pages definitely does alienate the far reaches of the graticules involved when a point is always chosen because of its proximity to the city center. My opinion is that split-city geohashers should have normal graticule pages, with the list of residents, and list of expeditions in that graticule. They can combine planning for a set of graticules on another page (I don't think this really solves the problem), or on one of the graticule pages (my preference), and provide a link to where planning goes on. Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, British Columbia are good examples of how to do the latter. I think a split-city approach to planning only would be fine if it wasn't primarily used to go to the easiest/nearest point. --aperfectring 13:13, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

I put in some dividers since my response is quite long...

I agree that a large number of "split cities", such as Würzburg (for Danatar and I) are best dealt with as two individual graticules, but I don't think that applies everywhere. I also agree that Vancouver should remain as "Vancouver" and "Surrey". However, there are some graticules where it doesn't make sense. Calgary is one example. In fact, we recently had a vote on the naming of the four graticules, but it was decided to leave them as Calgary NW, NE, SE, and SW.

The downtown portion of the city is in all four graticules, and there has been recent expansion (especially NE) that's not fully shown on google maps. I'd estimate that the divisions are:

  • NW: 40% of Calgary
  • NE: 15% of Calgary
  • SE: 15% of Calgary
  • SW: 30% of Calgary

The idea of switching to any of the other towns in the area was decided against as there are no other large towns. The largest one is in the NW graticule, which is the largest chunk of Calgary.

Now you may say that's just naming, and fine, leave the four graticules as NW/NE/SE/SW, but split them all to their own pages. Again, due to the location, this doesn't make much sense. Calgary is the only major population center in a large area, and all the other notable-sized towns are outskirts of Calgary itself, and are thus located nearby. Calgary isn't even that large land-wise, and the large majority of the four graticules is farmland. Anyone geohashing in Calgary is likely to look at all four graticules already. As such it makes more sense for any expeditions in the area to be displayed at one location for all four quadrants.

I do believe that most split cities should become multiple pages, but I also believe that there are exceptions. Calgary being one, and the one I'm most familiar with, hence why I'm using it as an example. Addressing the previous comments:

  • Ekorren:
    • Yes, it's about coordinates. It's also about meeting people though, and you're a lot more likely to meet people in Calgary if you announce an expedition to the city instead of a small portion of it.
    • Even in Würzburg I'll go to the neighbouring graticule (Bamberg) if it makes more sense. Maybe the Würzburg one is farther, but it might also be in an area that appears to be inaccesible, or no-tresspassing, or the like. There are many reasons, but the fact remains that I'm going to coordinates in a different graticule. Is that against the spirit of geohashing too? Yes, some people will undoubtedly use it to just go to the shortest geohash every time, but that's their choice. Again, using my example, it's still uncommon to have a hashpoint inside Calgary, even if you include all four graticules.
  • Danatar:
    • A good point, and it makes a lot of sense somewhere like in Germany where there are lots of towns. However, in Alberta, most of the area is farmland or unused or the like, and the population centers, like Calgary, are where you'll find people. Anyone interested in geohashes in any of the four graticules is almost assuredly (though not necessarily) either from Calgary, its suburbs, or another city in a neighbouring graticule. The closest neighbouring city would be Red Deer, Banff, or Lethbridge, all three of which are approximately 0.5° from the border of any of the four Calgary graticules. As such, the large, large majority of people conducting geohashes in any of those four graticules will be from Calgary (assuming normal statistics). As such, watching one page for all four graticules is easier than all four individually.
  • APR:
    • As I mentioned at some point above, it's still unlikely to get a point in Calgary even with all four graticules. The four graticules are more likely to be used for finding a hashpoint that's not in the middle of a gigantic field (good luck, the graticules are mostly farms), or in the case of the SW graticule, remotely accessible (as the Rocky Mountains take up around 50% of the graticule).
    • I do agree that most people will use it to simply get the closest point or get points only in the city, but the same people will do that regardless of if the four graticules have on page or not. Splitting the city into separate pages isn't going to remove that result.

I know that I probably sound like a jerk right now, but I just want to point out that some cities, in my opinion, should be left as split cities. I do agree that most should probably be split, but I think that what's proposed is overkill. There are some cities, like my now overused example of Calgary, that will function much better as a split city.

Before anyone points it out, I know Calgary is inactive. In fact, I hope to take some virgin graticules over the winter break there. However, just because it's currently inactive doesn't mean it will stay that way (Edmonton has got a few people recently), and there's no need to make it confusing for new people too. If I was new to geohashing, I'd look for my city by searching for "Calgary". I'd also expect all four to be displayed, as there's a substantial chunk of the city in each of the four graticules.

All that said, I'm open to other suggestions. I just don't think the current proposal would work in every case. Wow, I think I wrote too much. -Srs0 14:24, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the comments. No, it's not too much. :) I'm just not sure that my proposal has been clear. The idea would be to have the graticule pages named Calgary NW/NE/SE/SW as the graticules are named now. But to split off the whole planning part to a community page (containing categories like "Active geohashers", "Official Meetup" etc. - possibly another category "Planned expeditions") to a joint page (possibly named Calgary, Alberta as you have it now - which may then be included (as in a template) into the others, or just linked to, as you prefer).
I don't mind leaving a few pages as split cities if we should reach that conclusion. I am just hoping we can find a solution that's viable for all graticules and the people that live therein. -- relet 14:41, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
That makes more sense now, thanks. Switched my vote. -Srs0 14:58, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Srs0, I totally agree with your point that there exist some locations (like Calgary) where a joint community makes sense, and that was my reason for using Denver as an example. That is also the reason I didn't go fully in favor of the proposal. However, I think many places went too far with the "joint-cities" aspect (again Denver is a good example). I think that in the very few cases where there is an issue (like Calgary, or the southern two grats of Denver), the graticule pages should still remain singular with a link to a unified page for community-wide planning. I think this proposal should be more of a "we have way too many inappropriate split-cities" thing, rather than a wholesale "no more split-cities at all" thing.
We have graticule pages which are manually maintained, and any actually appropriate split-cities should also be done that way, but the individual graticule pages should exist, in my opinion. In the end, each splitup should be addressed on all appropriate talk pages, and discussed with the local community there before any action is taken. --aperfectring 14:53, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Agreed on all points. -Srs0 14:58, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Arrg, I never saw Denver before, that page is horrible... My ideas are:
  • Each graticule has its own page with its own description ("Calgary NW includes the NW part of Calgary + other towns. Other parts of Calgary are <link> and <link>"). The name "Calgary NW" is okay if it's the largest settlement, it's "Calgary 4in1" what I don't like.
  • Expeditions to graticule A should be listed on the page "graticule A", same for graticule B etc., not combined on the split city page (monday: graticule A; tuesday: graticule B; thursday: graticule D ...)
  • I'd prefer to do planning for each graticule separated on the respective page, but an additional "<city> inhabitants combined planning page" would be okay.
  • Watching all individual pages is done by clicking "watch" two/four times instead of only once, that should not be too hard for anybody who got as far as on the internet, and you have to look at all four graticules anyway to find out which hashpoint is best. And "almost nobody lives in that graticule except in the large city, so statistically..." doesn't say much. Statistically there should be ten times as many geohashers in New York City than in Vancouver, but there aren't.
  • In my opinion it's not at all against the spirit of geohashing to always choose the nearest hashpoint to go to. I do that all the time (except when a hashpoint farther away is much more interesting or better reachable) because of my limited possibility to cover large distances without spending money. - Danatar 17:04, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Although in a sense NOMB, as I'm not even on the same continent and haven't attempted my first geohash yet, another suggestion added to the Calgary talk page, which seems somewhat tidier... ISTM that a 1 degree square is likely to be more than big enough for most people, and also allows some certainty for someone with a copy of the algorithm and the required raw data to know where to go! - maybe the "split" required is between the concept of a graticule and the concept of a local group who want to co-ordinate their activities, but who might be near the edge or corner of a graticule. SteveL 16:54, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

For a long time I have been maintaining/updating the Newark, New Jersey page, and for a while I updated Atlantic City and Cape May as well. For a while I was the only one active on the wiki in the state. There were a couple of times where I have been tempted to either 1) merge the three into a single page, and post all NJ geohashes together in one place, or 2) merge the two "New York" graticules into one (NYC has surprisingly low activity for a variety of reasons). Having a "community page", e.g. for NYC and/or NJ, is an idea I would support. NJ is a small state, sometimes there is only one land geohash in the entire state, while other days there are three or four. (On 2009-07-28, there were none at all, though two were close to shore.)

But geohashing really comes down to what distance a hasher, especially a newbie, is willing to travel. I'm personally minesweeping, but what's a new person going to do when they come to the wiki? Search for the nearest city, and find out which graticule it's in? Or do they already own a GPS and therefore know their graticule first? I think most would know the city better than the graticule.

-- Jevanyn 17:08, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

Robyn - on iPod

Calgary and probably Denver are always going to plan as a city, but every graticule must have its own name and own page. I don't care whether that page is a mere redirect or a riotous mess of planning pages and subpages with see also links to half the neighbouring graticules. Vancouver-Surrey-Victoria could surely have a more elegant relationship, but it gets it done. I think most graticules will eventually replace the exhaustive list of completed grohashed with a link to the category, and any combined community page will feature maps of all the graticules in its catchment area, so why enforce putting them on separate unused pages? DNO.