How do you judge a trip? Was it good or bad? Did you learn anything or explore something new? How would you know and how do you remember? I think it all comes down to badges. Yes, I’ve started to judge the value of recent trips based on the number of badges that I’ve earned.
In August, I was in Boston for #satechBOS. These are the badges I earned on that trip.
Then just last week I was in Denver for the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference. And I gained more badges.
You may recognize these badges from Foursquare and Untappd, so they aren’t really related to the primary purpose of these trips. But what if conferences started awarding their own badges for specific accomplishments? Would that make attending the conference more fun? Would you learn more, or at least be encouraged to try new things? I attended SXSW in 2011 and earned different Foursquare badges based on the types and number of sessions I attended. I’d like to see a large conference work with the Mozilla Open Badges project to give this a try. You could earn badges by attending a given number of sessions in each track, by attending a total number of sessions, by attending multiple years, or by any number of ways. That would be a conference worth attending.