Help us develop a generic badge system for Discourse

We (Greenheart Games) are looking for someone who can design and develop a generic badge plugin for Discourse and then integrate it with our own systems.

If you’re interested please refer to the job posting on oDesk:

If you have any questions, feel free to comment or send me a PM.


Hello @pakl,

I could probably help with this. Just a random question: how far are you in the process? Like do you have a specific idea of what you want to do and how it should work? Do you have Mockups and a Designer (badges are design intense things)? And eventually, what are your plans for the plugin aka shall it be open-sourced?


@lightyear we are looking for someone who can go through the entire design process with us. We have some high level goals and some ideas but we still need to go through mockups and concepts before we can lock down a spec. We are not trying to define the badges themselves by the way, we are more interested in designing a generic system that would allow different use cases. One of the use cases is a manually assigned badge so the system should support that.

Oh, very interesting.

Have you, by any chance, looked at OpenBadges? It’s a great (technical) specification of a distributed and federated Badge-System created by Mozilla. The specs looks highly complicated though it is actually quite simple, but it makes some major remarks on the structure a badge-system needs to have (Issuer, Owner and “wallet”) and makes one focus on the really important question: Who’s issue Badges and for what? Is it automatic? On what grounds?

We were looking into how to do badges at OpenTechSchool, too. And found that is the actual issue one should be thinking about – because technically badges are trivial. And we found the way that P2Pu does badges, is by far the best (it is implemented on top of OpenBadges): you can submit a project to receive a badge and a peer reviews it. If the reviewer says, this proves you have the skills the Badge describes, you get awarded that badge. Which is a very great process and they have a great tool set developed for there.

Raising the question though: which part of the implementation do you want Discourse to be for? The simplest case would be to just display badges a user has at a third-party (similar like Gravatar works), another would be to have discourse also be the Wallet, where users can store their Badges and a third would be to also have Discourse be the Issuer/host of Badges. But the last one is also - use case and user experience-wise - the hardest to think of and get right.

Or short, yeah, I’d love to discuss with you, how to support badges in Discourse!


We’ll be talking more about this soon!