Turning Urban Nightlife Into A Game

The New York Times and Bright report about a new, free, smartphone application by Dennis Crowley called Foursquare. Foursquare seeks to turn the urban nightlife into a game by letting you earn points and unlock badges for discovering new places, doing new things and meeting new people. It’s one of those apps which demonstrate that the mobile Internet revolution increasingly determines the way people perceive physical space.

Through the application, a text message or the web, you can check in at a location. This can be everywhere. Foursquare tells you which of your friends are nearby. Every check-in earns you points, and every interesting check-ins earn you badges. According to the makers, “the more you explore, the more you unlock…” You can leave your friends tasks at certain locations. ‘Flirt with the bar lady’, for example. Foursquare is an interesting game, as it allows you to track all the cool things to do in town by providing the opportunity to both fill in a top 12 and a ‘to do’ list.