I know we’re at the “make it actually not be down a deep dark well” phase of getting Badges into better shape still, but there’s no harm in looking optimistically at the future, right?
Right now, we have groups of badges, and there are some which are a sequence – but just because they share a group and are given numbers. There’s no real link. However, there are several things we could do by defining explicit sequences. Here’s an example, from the Discourse project (yes, this is a little… meta):
Basically, this gives direction towards some goal. In this case, towards their rating as an expert in the software. DIscourse’s badges can be labled bronze, silver, or gold, so it’s easy to do a three-badge path. But I’d love for teams to be able to define more complicated paths of existing and new badges. For example, “these are the things to follow in the Join Fedora process”. Or “to become a Fedora Ambassador, meet these requirements”.
In the Join example, it’s about showing the new Fedorean what to do next. Guidance.
In the Ambassadors one, it’s a little different — completing that badge path could signify that you’re ready for official induction into the group, so it becomes a way to clearly encode requirements — almost like a kind of certification.
This could also be used to make fun “treasure hunt” chains, and… I’m sure others have ideas too.
There is a pathways/badge group feature in Tahrir, but we never fully rolled it out or tested it in Fedora. Alas! But the motivation to build that feature years ago matches the motivation you describe for badge paths here.
Is it limited to bronze/silver/gold or can a badge path have more than three paths? For example, what about the Bodhi testing badges, which have a sequence of ten?
With a more robust badges system and enhanced rule-matching in fedora-messaging, I can think of several use cases where this is a helpful tool for recognition of good work. Sometimes we forget about the formal recognition part. Which actually might say a good thing about our community, that anyone can do good work and lead things in Fedora without a bureaucratic-ish appointment or permission. But the formal recognition is still valuable and has a place too.
But with the big revamp of badges gaining momentum, documentation should be on the list, preferably in the mid section. In the meantime, I might play around with the staging instance to see what other items are for.