Trash Tycoon: Gamifying Recycling

Games have great potential to educate people and encourage them to solve large-scale social problems. An obvious example was World Without Oil, which required players to work together on simple, practical ways to adapt to a world without oil. The value of the game was to get players to apply collective intelligence and imagination to develop realistic, alternative solutions to dependence on oil.

More recently less-ambitious Facebook games like Trash Tycoon are trying to educate and change people’s behaviours in relation to reducing waste and recycling. Players have to clean their city by collecting piles of litter, create fertilizer, learn what can be composted and what can be upcycled.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is interesting is that Trash Tycoon is an initiative by TerraCycle, a fertilizer company that also produces products made from recycled materials. In order for TerraCycle to continue growing they need more people to recycle so Trash Tycoon enables them to increase awareness about both the environmental benefits and uses of recycled materials and expand awareness about TerraCycle.

It is not going to nudge people to make a holistic change in their recycling / waste management behaviour, but it will at least make people aware of how products can be used after we finish them. It will hopefully make us think before throwing things away, but stronger incentives are needed to solve waste problems.

Talent Losers and Winners

This is a great graph from Top Prospect that shows how Silicon Valley companies are hiring talent from each other.

There are some limitations with the data (the data comes only from Top Prospect’s database, it doesn’t give a total workforce number) but what is interesting is that it shows where these companies fit in the hierarchy of ¬†preferences for engineers. ¬†Facebook and Linkedin are clearly the hottest at the moment just as Microsoft and Yahoo were previously. This isn’t a surprise: people look for good work and the excitement of being in a fast-growing company that is making a difference.

 

Does Facebook Hurt Relationships?

This is an infographic on the affect Facebook has on relationships. What I find most interesting are the high number of potential stressors that people are exposed to by using Facebook – status updates, friends and contacts, etiquette, and your mood and status. Sharing so much information publicly makes us more conscious of how we are perceived.

Like most things in life, it suggests that a little exposure is better than a lot.

Facebook and Relationships
Collaboration between All Facebook and Online Dating University