Example BadgesToday we are announcing Ushahidi’s Open Source Badges initiative. This project makes it easy for developers to find badge image resources to include in their projects and Ushahidi deployers to create cool badges to award their users. These are badge images in a variety of categories which can be used in Ushahidi or Crowdmap deployments or other services.

These badges are broken down into “badge packs”. For example, the Locations pack is a simple grouping of badges that follow a travel theme, with badges highlighting landmarks from countries around the world. The Ushahidi pack is a group of generic badges that the Ushahidi team has put together. New packs are expected soon, with contributions from the community and designers from other projects as well.

How can you use this as an Ushahidi administrator? Deployers of newer versions of the Ushahidi Platform and current users of Crowdmap have access to all of these badges already. Simply log into your admin panel and browse to the Manage->Badges settings page to get started. As an example, you may award the 25 Star badge to a user who has sent in 25 approved reports. This can be a manual process where you assign badges to users or set up Action Triggers to do this automatically. Just experiment with the platform to come up with interesting achievements to award your users.

We need your help! This collection of open source badges belongs to the community. If you’re a designer, developer or just interested in all things badgy, you can support this initiative. Your efforts will impact a multitude of projects, ranging from projects that crowdsource information in crisis and disaster situations to projects that reward people for submitting delicious pictures of cheeseburgers. Please check out our badge site for more information.

We’re really excited to see what everyone comes up with. We hope to see the badge image repository grow so other projects can get some value out of our open source badge initiative. Let us know in the comments what you come up with!