My current lifestyle changes comes with the ability to exercise a lot more. I'm logging in serious hours on foot these days much to the hopeful happiness of my future booty and belly. As part of my monitoring, I decided to indulge in a FitBit. I chose one that checks my heart rate constantly and has cute features, one of which is being a watch. I really needed the watch.
With the american shopping Holiday here, I decided to wait for a sale. The sale came and I picked up my expensive gadget at a little less expensive. Everything arrived today and I chortled to myself while I synced it to my phone, told it that I was indeed very fat. All set with my device, I've spent the day trying and failing to ignore my arm. I've not worn a watch in about ten years so having one has been very disorienting. However, its more then a watch and occasionally I look at the various stats and chortle while hoping I don't become a bad review on Amazon in a week or two.
I'm coming into the Eve stuff, honest.
This evening, after the evening dog walk my wrist buzzed. I giggled a bit and checked it. To my amazement, my phone was congratulating me on my first 5k steps and gave me a reward badge for it. It then emailed me and told me I was an amazing person and to keep going, I was only halfway to the 10k steps.
I explained to my new toy that this was a day off and that I was not going to do another 5k steps. I was going to sit on my butt in my chair and vegetate in bliss. I also thought the entire badge thing was stupid and I went to seek a way to turn it off. After an hour, I started to come to the conclusion that in fact, I cannot turn off the badges. My device will continue to reward me for these things.
The interesting bit was along the way I found that everyone else was looking to make sure their rewards where turned on. There was a bug at some point and people couldn't delete accidental badges. There was much sadness about it.
That leaves me staring at my wrist and realizing that badges motivate people a lot. Arbitrary goals contain a value that I do not understand.
It makes me think of Eve. We've had the badge discussion many, many times. The new Opportunity system lays down bread crumbs in little feel good success completions. CCP says that they are more appealing to new players then the old drop into tutorial missions. When I spend time learning that I cannot turn off rewards and that everyone else around me is charting them, I understand that I may be the strange one here.
I don't find myself liking the idea of badges anymore. I also don't want a pink Stratios. Yet, Mynxee who I dearly love, would adore one. It makes us different and nether of us wrong. It is not that I will suddenly jump and advocate for badges in Eve (if one ignores that Opportunities already are).
But, as I look at my wrist and press the button again (because its blue!) I do find myself questioning motivation.