Gamification Open: Using Fun & Engagement to Build Great Software

Tools and Techniques
Location: Portland Ballroom
Average rating: ****.
(4.67, 33 ratings)

Gamification is transforming business and technology. As developers and business leaders master the power of game mechanics like points, badges, levels, challenges and rewards, they are increasing consumer and enterprise engagement in unprecedented ways.

As developers and architects, harnessing the power of gamification can make the difference between good and great user experiences.

In this open-source focused session, Author & Industry Expert Gabe Zichermann will present the key patterns and pitfalls of gamification, providing a technology and strategy-focused session that covers the most critical things you need to know about this trend, including:

  • What gamification can and cannot do
  • Designing for user motivation, not features
  • Onboarding users, and the importance of the first 60 seconds
  • Major failures in gamification and what we can learn from them
  • How to make the process of developing software itself more fun and engaging

Key takeaways will include actionable opportunities and threats to leveraging gamification in software and open source environments.

Photo of Gabe Zichermann

Gabe Zichermann

Gamification.Co & Gamification Summit

Gabe Zichermann is an author, highly rated public speaker and entrepreneur. He is the chair of the Gamification Summit and editor of the industry’s leading publication, The Gamification Blog. His most recent book, “Game-Based Marketing” (Wiley, 2010) has achieved critical and industry acclaim for its detailed look at innovators who blend the power of games with brand strategy. His next book, “Gamification by Design” (O’Reilly, 2011) looks at the technical and architectural considerations for designers in this burgeoning field. A resident of NYC, Gabe is a board member of, advisor to a number of startups and Facilitator for the Founder Institute in Manhattan. For more information about Gabe and Gamification, visit http://Gamification.Co

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Picture of Estelle Weyl
Estelle Weyl
08/01/2011 3:23am PDT

Great talk with good energy. Made me think. Areas for improvement: the overuse of sexual innuendo became distracting, really detracting from your message.

Picture of Ricardo Signes
Ricardo Signes
07/31/2011 11:55pm PDT

Without a doubt, this was one of the most interesting and useful talks that I attended. It covered what gamification is and is not, along with the history of the concept and how it’s being used and misused today. Gabe was a fantastic speaker, and I enjoyed listening him present per se almost as much as I enjoyed hearing his take on the topic.

Through the reset of the conference, I heard this talk mentioned as one of the best, and a number of conversations erupted concerning gamification and whatever other topic was at hand. Just great.

Dave Cohoe
07/31/2011 11:00pm PDT

Awesome talk! This has got me excited about the application of gamification in a number of areas – anywhere we need better engagement with our customers.

Picture of Jessamyn Smith
Jessamyn Smith
07/30/2011 3:34am PDT

Entertaining and informative!

Picture of Peter Banka
Peter Banka
07/29/2011 7:11am PDT

Funny, inspiring, informative. Everything you want from a talk.

Doug Carter
07/29/2011 5:45am PDT

Awesome presentation! The best not-specifically-technical presentation I’ve ever seen at an OSCON.

sarah stanger
07/29/2011 4:48am PDT

Great speaker! Very engaging with good examples, good use of humour.

Picture of Augustina Ragwitz
Augustina Ragwitz
07/28/2011 9:16am PDT

Enjoyed the talk immensely! Loved the descriptions of the personality types, focus on motivation, and great sense of humor. Could have more concrete examples of how to apply the principles discussed in apps, that’s the only reason for 4 stars instead of 5.

Jennifer Cohen
07/28/2011 4:28am PDT

Interesting topic, VERY engaging speaker. Thanks!