One of the interesting things about Stack Exchange is the badge system. I think it makes things more fun and competitive, while encouraging users to work and help the community.
I was wondering where this idea came from, and if our badge system was inspired by some other group/technology. I know that this is an old reward system within the military, but I wonder who first brought it to a virtual community.
FourSquare, Empire Avenue and other social networks have implemented their own badge systems that work very similarly to ours, and I can't help thinking that they were influenced by Stack Exchange.
Did we copy this system from somebody else?