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The bronze tag badges were introduced. I (and many others) have received a plethora of them. While truly cool, they are however right now all grouped and arranged at the very top of the badge list.

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It looks off. I received the bronze Java/JSP/JSF badges after the gold ones! Can't all those badges be rearranged on real (calculated) receiving date like follows?

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YOU will get other badges soon enough and then things would look right again =) – polygenelubricants Sep 7 '10 at 11:45
Badges are always listed in the order they were received. Mortarboard is another example, as would Copy Editor and Electorate if you'd already met the criteria for those badges by the time they were introduced. – ChrisF Sep 7 '10 at 11:55
@poly: but this doesn't put the gold/silver ones after the bronze ones. @chris: that's indeed how it currently works, my request is just to rearrange the badges by the real/calculated receiving date. I already considered more than once before to post this question. But the "offness" was not striking enough. Right now it is. – BalusC Sep 7 '10 at 11:58
Yerp on my list for tomorrow, Im actually going to post a question on SO for this, the query is nasty – waffles Sep 7 '10 at 13:26
Since it has been fixed now, here's a snapshot of the wall for posterity. – Grace Note Sep 8 '10 at 13:07
@Balus your list looks fine to me ... first badge it bottom right ... most recent is top left. 10th badge is top right. – waffles Sep 8 '10 at 23:35
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Just deployed a fix on (Meta/SO/SF and SU)

Some of the more complicated SQL I wrote in the last few weeks :)

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How will deletions affect the recalc? Can someone earn their badge "retroactively" LATER than the original date, or worse, have it completely taken away from them due to deletions? I'm really worried that a badge recalc will open up a whole can of worms. – polygenelubricants Sep 8 '10 at 6:49
And what about retagging? That may also cause all sorts of pains and headaches. – polygenelubricants Sep 8 '10 at 6:55
@poly retagging a badge that already got 200 answers is kind of rare. if the system does the retagging it simply replaces everything so badges are not affected. deletions totally affect the new "daily" tag badge recalc though. we now strip badges which do not apply see:… – waffles Sep 8 '10 at 7:08
Where's the SO question related to the SQL? – BalusC Sep 8 '10 at 12:31
@BalusC the SQL I used is here: ... the question is :… – waffles Sep 8 '10 at 23:49

A full badge recalc would solve this, by wiping everyone's badge record and replaying the badge awards chronologically against the current codebase. This would achieve the effect of receiving a badge sometime in the past, when one really qualified for it (if the current codebase was in effect at the time).

A while back Jeff suggested a badge recalc would be coming -- is this still planned?

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According Waffle's comment on the question, it's going to come! He yet has to sanitize/improve the nasty/complex SQL query responsible for this :) – BalusC Sep 7 '10 at 17:44

I kind of like this "feature", actually. Now and forever we can jealously witness that Jon Skeet got a whole ton of bronzes in one day. That looks FAR more impressive than if it were scattered around.

That said, I think this will make SEDE queries for tag badges tricky, since tag badges have the exact same name, and as far as I know, the only way to distinguish which one is silver and which one is gold was by looking at their timestamp. We can't do this now with the bronze badges introduced much later, e.g. some user's first tag badge may be a silver, or it may be a bronze.

I think we can keep the badge timestamp the way it is (i.e. let these bronzes be clustered the way they are, chronologically after their corresponding gold/silver if any), but "fix" SEDE so that bronze/silver/gold tag badges can be queried timestamp-insensitively.

The simplest solution for the SEDE problem is probably to introduce an additional column for badge "color", which can be useful even for other badges as well. It'd make queries like e.g. "how many gold badges do I have?" simple and natural.


  • Keep the timestamps the way it is
    • As a public display, it looks far more impressive to cluster all these bronze tag badges together
    • It's also impressive when you consider that this phenomenon is reserved exclusively for those who earned the badge "in the past", and is a feat that can never be duplicated in the future
    • Awarding badges retroactively is probably complicated/expensive, and there are far more important things to do for the platform right now
  • DO fix SEDE so we can easily distinguish bronze/silver/gold badges
    • Otherwise things are a huge mess
    • Should be very easy to fix
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Jon's badge page is indeed terrific! – BalusC Sep 7 '10 at 12:23

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