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Re: Address formatting functionality


Structure is an important problem with addresses generally.  We think of addresses as being structured and they are, but they aren't structured the same way everywhere.  Consider the Nicaraguan addressing system, for example, where you have no street names and instead reference places relative to landmarks and directions (and some directions are location-dependent, like "El Calvario 1c al lago 1/2c Abajo" (i..e start at El Calvario, go one block towards the lake, and 1/2 block down, i.e. West).  Also in Ecuador you have cross streets (1889 Manosca #105 y Occidental, Occidental here is the nearest cross-street) as a part of a well-formed address.

(I wasn't sure about the Nicaraguan address problem until I checked web sites of restaurants in Nicaragua for their addresses.  See the address at the bottom of http://www.restaurantedoncandido.com/).

In general these pose problems as I see it.  The simple way to address this is just to put the whole address in a text field except for the country.  Of course if you do this it becomes hard to do reporting on this by post code or city, or province/state.

This is part of the reason why we adopted the idea of three free-form lines along with city, province, post-code, and country.  As I understand it xNAL allows this sort of structure, and I'd prefer to keep it simple (take a look at some of the examples).

Of course these areas are not ordered the same way in different places so I think the key question is on formatting of the fields we use at this point.

Best Wishes,
Chris Travers