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Going along with my suggested implementation for Generalist, since the specialist badges have a gold level, I propose that the Generalist badge should too, called Polymath and, under an awarding mechanism like the one I describe in that other suggestion, requiring 5x the threshold of score that Generalist does. (So if Generalist were implemented with the 500 point threshold I just threw out there, Polymath would have a 2500 point threshold.)

The way Generalist wound up implemented, the wording for Polymath would be: "Provided non-wiki answers of 75 total score in 20 of top 40 tags".

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Polyglot would probably be a more accurate name. –  Bill the Lizard Aug 5 '09 at 13:11
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Ooh, that'd be a good one if we could specifically identify language tags. –  chaos Aug 5 '09 at 13:11
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Bill: Polyglot means multiple languages, but polymath means expertise in different subject areas. I would say polymath is the more accurate form, but polyglot is the more known word. –  TheTXI Aug 5 '09 at 13:12
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Yes, on second thought (since we can't target languages only) polymath probably would be better. –  Bill the Lizard Aug 5 '09 at 13:12
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polymath is for polynerds :P –  Kip Aug 5 '09 at 13:16
    
A female with no food = Polly No Meal –  TheTXI Aug 5 '09 at 13:19
    
Polly wants a cracker; maybe she would like more food... –  Shog9 Aug 5 '09 at 16:07
    
Y'all crazy as hell, yo. –  chaos Aug 5 '09 at 17:42
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Clearly, we should avoid polymath and go with polyhistor, to avoid bias towards the more math-oriented SO users. –  Pops May 23 '10 at 16:39

4 Answers 4

up vote 18 down vote accepted

Since generalist badge is already implemented, let me suggest for gold version.

Current Generalist badge is -

Provided non-wiki answers of 15 total score in 20 of top 40 tags

More strict one should be added for Gold for example -

Provided non-wiki answers of 75 total score in 50 of top 100 tags

Note: values could/should be tweak a bit more.

I am not sure PolyMath is good name or not, I was tried to post new question, but I found this question, so just posting as answer

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It's possible to get Polymath before Generalist with this setting. –  KennyTM May 23 '10 at 17:22
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@KennyTM - Possible, but very odd. It's also possible to get Great Answer before getting Good Answer, depending on how fast the voting went, and when the badge task runs. I don't think it makes this option less valid. In the olympics you aren't expected to get a bronze and silver before you're allowed to get gold. –  Adam Davis May 25 '10 at 14:06
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Incidentally... There are 6 people who meet this criteria right now on SO. It is considerably harder to have significant activity in 50 tags than it is in 20. –  Shog9 Feb 21 '13 at 19:36

I like the idea, but would suggest increasing the number of tags instead of the depth of score in those tags. Otherwise a Polymath is not anymore general than a Generalist. Example:

Generalist requirement:

Provided non-wiki answers of 15 total score in 20 of top 40 tags

Polymath requirement:

Provided non-wiki answers of 15 total score in 35 of top 40 tags

Also, another option for the name of the badge might be: Sage.

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It would be interesting to see the distribution of how many people meet the criteria as the "35 of" and "top 40" change. –  marcog Feb 1 '11 at 13:11
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@marcog, 30 out of 40 might be better, I agree that looking at the distribution would help determine where to draw the line. –  jzd Feb 1 '11 at 14:37
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"35 of top 40" is nearly an omnimath (e.g. one who knows everything important). –  Paŭlo Ebermann Jul 8 '11 at 1:48
    
@PaŭloEbermann This should be pantomath, not omnimath. –  Phira Jan 9 at 11:16

Assuming the Generalist badge ever gets implemented, I wouldn't mind seeing something like this.

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I had the idea for a "polymath" badge today and was happy to see that it had already been suggested, but I think that our ideas are slightly different (correct me if I'm wrong please). Suppose that polymath was an inter-site level badge - do those exist? Basically, some way of pointing out that a particular user is significantly active not only on a selection of several tags on one StackExchange site, but that the user is significantly active over a spectrum of sites.

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I believe that cross-site badges have been discussed before, though I think it's a cool in principle / challenging from the server backend idea. What good behavior does it promote? Visiting / Contributing to multiple stack exchange websites (which I think is a very good thing). –  M. Tibbits Jul 7 '11 at 17:24

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