Just a week after competitor Gowalla teamed up with NASA to give users a few new check-in badges to chase, popular mobile game Foursquare has taken the idea to the next level, announcing it too is working with the government agency.
Yesterday, Expedition 25 Commander Douglas H. Wheelock checked in to Foursquare 220 miles above Earth from space (see image). The astronaut checked in from the International Space Station and unlocked the new NASA Explorer Badge, according to Foursquare’s blog. Check-in services allow users to give their location via a smartphone in real-time and share with their social networks.
Similar to Gowalla, Foursquare worked with Jess3, a creative agency, for the project’s visual and social media components. Jess3 explains the project on its website, noting that astronaut Wheelock checked in at 11:09 am EST and that the agency created the visual header for the NASA Foursquare page and did the animation wrap for the NASA TV official coverage (see video below).
When I asked Foursquare cofounder Dennis Crowley last week about working with government agencies, such as NASA, he told me, “Maybe we’ll do something like that someday.” Who would have thought he meant it was just a week away. Or perhaps we sparked his interest so much that he decided he wanted is own astronaut.