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“Departments” of France

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  • #4260
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    I’m finding in my trip research that the Regions of France are rarely used to describe locations. Pretty much everyone uses the Departments to differentiate areas or specify locations.

    Sometime, later, could the Departments be substituted for the Regions as the Subnational Admin Boundaries for France?

    Thanks!

    #5285
    GeoMagikGeoMagik
    Admin
    • Topics: 33
    • Replies: 796

    Not sure I understand.  Are you talking about the entries in the Maps list under France or are you referring to the border lines drawn on the map itself?

    #5289
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    Aaarrrrrgh! I wrote a big long response, and now it’s not here?! I must have done something wrong. Or maybe it will turn up later. But in the meantime,,,

    I am referring to both. I assume the Maps list and the border lines are derived from/based on the same data set from OSM. (Note, I have no idea how this really works!)

    Since no one who writes travel articles or talks about places in France identifies the location of places by French Region, but rather by Departments, it would be helpful to have the Maps list and the border lines (and the labels inside the border lines) be delineated by Departments, not Regions.

    Thank you!

    #5291
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    Oh, and it occurs to me after looking back at the current Map Lists, that the first subcategory lists of France, the U.S. and all other countries I look at have tags under the subcategory names saying “Region.”

    It’s true of France that the heirarchy goes Country > Region > Department > commune (?), I think.

    But in the U.S., it goes Country > State > County/City, etc. Perhaps the “Region” tag in the Map List should just be dropped? It might actually be more confusing than it is correct!

    Thanks!

    #5292
    GeoMagikGeoMagik
    Admin
    • Topics: 33
    • Replies: 796

    The border lines shown on the map are OSM data, and should be pretty comprehensive. But I just checked, it looks like there is some issue preventing the Department lines from appearing. We will look into this further.

    What is listed in the Maps list however is actually coming from another source because it was much easier to work with early on.  We will be moving over to OSM data for this in the future which will be more comprehensive and have better multi-lingual and country specific support.
    #5293
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    Thanks for your consideration! Yes, the borders for French Regions are quite exact.

    I think it’s not the borders, on the map, that are the main concern. Mostly it’s a Search/List function. (And this may be true of other countries, I don’t know!) Since most references to places in France use a Department, it would be handy to have the data listed that wy, or to be able to View-on-Map for a Department.

    And while I have your ear, would it be possible to consider the line styles for borders? It looks to me as if National borders are solid gray, and remain so at all zoom levels.

    In the Unites States, the Regional (state) borders are dashed gray lines, but at some close zoom level they become dashed purple. I think this is the same in France. (There are no Counties for England, Scotland, etc. People almost always refer to counties when giving locations in England.) It would be nice if these admin subboundaries could stay the same style (which should probably also always be gray) at all zoom levels. It gets confusing when they change to a style that looks very much like another type of boundary!

    Thank you very much.

    I’m looking forward to future tweaks!

    #5458
    AvatarOG2404
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 7

    I jump in ­čÖé

    France is organized in 27 “r├ęgions” (22 for metropolitan France) > 101 “d├ępartements” (96 for metropolitan France) > 36681 “communes” (36652 for metropolitan France).
    For everyday life, for accuracy and even for a better repartition of “communes”, using “d├ępartements” is preferred.
    BUT when we travel and for leisure activities we usually use “r├ęgions” (ex: “I visited my family in Brittany last summer”). I also think most travel guides are organised primarily by “r├ęgions” both to simplify access and because they have a stronger cultural identity.
    As Pocket Earth is about travelling, I would recommend keeping “r├ęgions” as the first subcategory. Adding a second subcategory with “d├ępartements” would be a nice touch, but I don’t see it as a priority.
    Olivier
    #5475
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    Dear Olivier,

    Interesting! Thanks for adding to the discussion.

    BUT when we travel and for leisure activities we usually use “r├ęgions”
    (ex: “I visited my family in Brittany last summer”). I also think most
    travel guides are organised primarily by “r├ęgions” both to simplify
    access and because they have a stronger cultural identity.

    OK, that’s interesting. Yes, probably most guides are organized by something like regions. But the Guide Regions don’t always correspond exactly to the official regions!

    As Pocket Earth is about travelling, I would recommend keeping “r├ęgions”
    as the first subcategory. Adding a second subcategory with
    “d├ępartements” would be a nice touch, but I don’t see it as a priority.

    Well, I’m using PE for traveling. But as a user, I’d like to see PE be as successful as possible, and limiting its scope or usefulness to the concerns of travelers is perhaps not the grandest vision possible! PE could be useful to all kinds of people doing things/gathering or generating information “out in the field,” so to speak. I don’t know, archaeologists, or somebody. Although perhaps specialists have specialized software!

    Anyhow, I’m a sometime database developer&user, and my experience is the more ways there are to collect and organize information the better. So long as “the ways” are reasonably easy to understand and use, and the lesser ones don’t interfere with the more common. Hah!

    Along those lines, I’m collecting information from a lot of web sites: Les Plus Beau Villages de France, RandoGPS.net, the Megalithic Portal, etc. All the web sites I visit map and list by d├ępartements. I assume this limits the length of lists, makes map sections smaller and easier to see, etc. It would be handy to be able to use PE to show map areas that correspond to the Lists!

    Thanks for listening!

    #5477
    OzgeoOzgeo
    Moderator
    • Topics: 13
    • Replies: 43

    @buckye
    PE could be useful to all kinds of people doing things/gathering or
    generating information “out in the field,” so to speak. I don’t know,
    archaeologists, or somebody. Although perhaps specialists have
    specialized software! ….. It would be handy to be able to use PE to show map areas that correspond to the Lists!

    I’m with you on this one. Following the Tour de France for many year and now it is another use I put PE to and this event certaily refers to d├ępartements on a day to day basis. And I agree with the analogy in the USA where Countys are very similar to d├ępartements in France.

    #5481
    BuckyEBuckyE
    Moderator
    • Topics: 61
    • Replies: 286

    Thanks, Ozgeo. Geomagik did say “We will be moving over to OSM data for this in the future which will be
    more comprehensive and have better multi-lingual and country specific
    support.” So we’ll see what happens!

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