On most stringed instruments (violin, bass, etc) playing positions are counted by scale degree and not half-steps. On Guitar, you count frets and this makes for 12+ positions to play in, each with limited use.
It would be much simpler if positions were counted by scale degree. So for example, if your first finger is on G (on low E string), that would be second position - whether it's flat, sharp or natural. And in turn, if your first finger is on A, it would be third position. This way there's fewer positions, and you can play in any key in each position.
Why is the convention on Guitar to count playing positions by fret number?