Leave it to those gosh darn Harvard brainiacs to come up with another way to combat the doldrums of a blistering Boston winter. As The Harvard Gazette reports
, the university has recently launched a collaboration
with Foursquare, the social networking mobile app, in an apparent effort to get kids out of the library, and into the campus and greater Cambridge area. Students can now use Foursquare to find, rate, and share their favorite hangouts, and to, ideally, become more active within the community in the process. Perry Hewitt, of Harvard's Public Affairs and Communications office, believes that the initiative "will allow [the] community to engage with friends, professors, and colleagues in new ways."
And, since it's Harvard, there's a mini competition involved with the whole scheme, as well. Foursquare users can accumulate points by "checking in" at each place they frequent, and can eventually earn a special badge to honor their
devotion. Big-dreaming future politicians can even get their start on the service; the person who goes to a single place more than anyone else becomes its official Foursquare "mayor."
Harvard's apparently the first school to use Foursquare in this kind of way, but it probably won't be the last. Not that we ever had a remote chance of getting into Harvard, but, if we had been accepted, we would've probably dug this idea -- if only to witness the inevitably bloody race to become mayor of Mr. Bartley's Burger Cottage
. [From: Harvard Gazette