My Badges and I


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A first-pass meditation on the use of badges in everyday life

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My Badges and I

  1. 1. My Badges and IRichard Vahrman, LocoMatrix
  2. 2. Why Badges• Dislike “gamification” – why?• Like badges – Huge potential in education – Interesting in comunities – Self-analysis• But lots of things I need to understand• Made more useful with Open Badges
  3. 3. Where to Begin• Started to think about how I might describe me and my life in badges• On next page you will see my results. Who do you think I am?• Take a few moments to have a look, before going onto following pages• Would like to see another 50 people try this
  4. 4. The Real Me• Image always been qualified by how much I look like others• Early: Frank Zappa (never had the under lip bit)• Middle: Ron Jeremy (nsfw)• Older: Einstein• Could have several other “Confused With” Badges e.g. John Oates, Carlos Santana• Bear with me on the next few pages – the interesting bits come at the end
  5. 5. What does it mean?• Thinking about early life and real badges• First badge – learning to swim and doing 25 yards at Butlins• Made prefect / cycling proficiency (now Bikeability!)• Later driving test / HGV• Also piano grades (but no badges)• More to say on these later
  6. 6. School and Work• Most of this you can guess• Raises question about badges and timelines• Raises question about drilling down within badge• E.g. Small scroll = O levels: how many / grades / subjects / which failed• Raises questions about relevance – what use can I make of it now• Says little about why career has gone the way it has / decision made / bits left out
  7. 7. The Sporty Bits• What have I done to keep fit• Swimming / judo / tai chi• The dumbbells represent gym stuff (but I don’t go to the gym – do it at home)• Plus they represent “smart swords”• Walking – both hobby and fitness – added GPS because links in with work interests
  8. 8. Health• There has to be huge potential in health badges• Represents – age /4 x in hospital / dieting / and, no not drug user, but it’s a happy pill meaning I don’t take any medication• There’s a lot more that could go here – links in with Self-Managed Healthcare• Links with Sport /Exercise (see previous)
  9. 9. Things I Like• Used to play chess (more on this later)• TED talks relates to a whole field of things – finding out about stuff• Films –but don’t like going to cinema• The book button could be added to in so many ways
  10. 10. Music• Playing the piano (grades?)• Performing – playing in bands• Building own synthesiser• Instruments – piano/accordion/cajon• Vintage instruments – Hammond organ
  11. 11. My Community• Where I live• I like where I am – I like my house• Sense of community – badges here are important and will discuss later• 3 icons to right are DEB / BOB / HOG and are my contribution to doing stuff in community for Education / Older People / Community projects• See also CityCamp
  12. 12. Politics and Beliefs• CND – says so much in one small badge• No religion• Essentially green• Became vegetarian but not so now (but not huge meat eater)
  13. 13. Everything Else• Personal Status• I think a lot – and as I am thinking about thinking a lot, maybe should have Myers-Briggs or other personality measures here• Built and own 3D printer (more on this in a bit)• Go in for social media in a big (but erratic) way
  14. 14. So That’s Me …• … but I still keep thinking of things to add• … but not the point of the exercise• Point is ???• What value to a badge?• Digging down into a badge – sub badges• Lifetime of a badge• What it might mean to me – way of personal development• What it might mean to others – mentoring / employment
  15. 15. Thoughts about My Badges• Swimming badge might reflect – I could swim at the age of 6 – I still swim – I do breast stroke / front crawl and butterfly / back stroke. The first two are my best – I swim in the sea even during the winter (with wetsuit) – I prefer open water to pools – I was pretty good (school captain / local champion / national marathon finalist at 40) – I had life-saving training and saved 4 people
  16. 16. Badges with Measurable Value• I like the link between badges and martial art belts. Maybe rim of badge colour-coded from white to black• I lied about doing judo – but wanted to bring this concept in• I do Tai Chi which is not graded … so maybe a badge has a measure of how long studied• Easy to measure chess skills and get rating (e.g. online here)• Not as good at chess as I was as don’t play but would be good to find others with similar rating• Rating of piano playing skills by grades – can’t make up my mind about the value of this. Maybe useful to select music one wants to play or others to play with
  17. 17. Books and Films• Watching films, and reading are hobbies• Like the idea of a badge for each book I read• Would like to add a rating for each• Might be useful in finding other books that I would like• Do the same for films or restaurants or holidays – link with review sites
  18. 18. Some Badges Seem to Say it All• A single badge can say a lot about you• Could there be a time in the new badge society where one can look at a group of badges associated with a person and “know” them?• Exercise: ask 50 people to describe themselves in 5 badges
  19. 19. Immediate Areas of Interest• Education - how badges might work in a Gove- free regime• Community – House of Games and a new local democracy• Personalised health care (thinking about this at present – no further comments)
  20. 20. The New Education1. Education is for life. Independent of age. Not fixed spells of junior, senior, university, then work.2. Education is personalised. Everyone makes their own plan. No curriculum just paths to follow.3. Change wont begin in school, but inward from home schooling, after-school, science and maker fairs. This is fun learning for C214. Tablet is the key to personalised learning (at moment - will change in future). The first personal/portable device to enable a new learning.5. Mentoring throughout life. Mentors rather than teachers. We need to learnt to be both mentored and be mentors. And from an early age.6. 4 Stages of Education. Children pass from one stage to the next like levels in a game. It is not strictly age related and a child can stay at one level until comfortable to move on.7. Cubs: Learning for young children – like animal cubs through play – but also picking up basic skills in numeracy and literacy (it has to be done). But if you don’t get it, you have access to better and better ”teachers” rather than being given up on. Once you are there, you move on to Explorers8. Explorers: Learn to work using internet, use of tablet with video, camera, voice recorder for documentation. Badges to show where been, and what can be done next. Small project and team work9. Directors: Teamwork becomes more important and should be able to lead. Mentoring younger people. Good project skills. Making big things - build a computer, plane, boat, building, write a book, direct a play - on own or as part of something bigger. Work experience very important. Training to learn how to work. Spending time in community.10. Apprentices: Preparing for work Universities are for research - not teaching. The best route for learning is through working with other - need to have a university “experience” – being away from parents, but maybe better ways of doing it (and prepared for earlier on)
  21. 21. Role of Badges in New Education• Awarding of badges for tasks achieved. How do we measure quality/what has been learnt?• For some projects, the mere fact that have been completed will show competence – e.g. make a 3D printer, would show everything from electronic, computing, mechanical and design skills• Getting a badge leads to suggestions of other topics to follow. Either follow a subject deeper, or adjacent topics or something complementary• Companies like LocoMatrix will issue badges for their games. Games can be tweaked so can come back to at a later age with more content, greater difficulty• Any company can add a game, but review system will deem whether people play it – plus opportunity for open source, tweaking• Some material around a subject won’t have badges attached, but students will learn to read around to improve understanding.• A system for having a view of the bigger picture – how games etc. relate to each other – and how learning paths could be created. Maybe it would become apparent as things took shape.
  22. 22. Specific to LocoMatrix• Invisible Buildings is a play-only game for 7-9 year olds – dig up a virtual Roman villa• Extend at that age for children to create their own objects for metal detection• Extend at a later age, to create other building genres e.g. Tudors or Pirate Ship• Extend later still to create other games – learn GPS programming• Extend later for more realistic archaeology field trips• Extend into other fields such as dig up dinosaur and palaeontology.• Award badge for playing simple game and then add colours (martial arts belt) for more advanced use
  23. 23. What is the House of Games?• Where to start? Its so many things, but I guess it all comes back to one place - the place where you live and how you can make it a better place. But here are some other views.• LinkedIn is for your professional network, FaceBook is for your friends. House of Games is your social network for your volunteering activities.• Youre keen to help improve your neighbourhood but your residents association is a bunch of Moaning Minnies dedicated to banning everything. House of Games is your positive action group.• Your MP is useless: they have done nothing to improve your area. Get political and join the House of Games: become a local hero.• If you are interested or have a skill in a certain problem (e.g. dementia), who else is involved locally? Find out at the House of Games.• Want to get involved locally but dont know what to do? Someone at the House of Games will help you, mentor you or just point you in the right direction.• The House is a Game. As you progress in your activities, you can move up levels. And, of course, there are badges…
  24. 24. House of Games + Badges• This was where I first got excited about badges• But not about rewards• House of Games is an inverted hierarchy where the people at street level are the most important – they are carrying out the projects• This means when you “rise” to a higher level you become less important but you have skills to offer so you can: organise / mentor / project manage• Badges become a way of identifying your skills and usefulness to others• Currently working with DemSoc and iPublic to prototype locally
  25. 25. Anything Else About Badges?• Nope. Badged out! Richard Vahrman –