tourist, with iphone
I tried out Foursquare as we were showing Rod around North Hordaland a couple of days ago. Foursquare is a location-aware social network and game – you use your GPS-enabled phone to “check in” at interesting places, you can leave tips about interesting stuff to do for other people to see, and you can collect points and earn badges by checking in at particular places. Although every tenth Norwegian apparently now has an iPhone, there aren’t too many Foursquare users, it seems. I was the first person to tag Bergen Public Library, for instance. And we drove along the coast an hour or two out of Bergen with nary a tag in site – until we got to Mongstad Oil Refinery, which had a mayor and everything. (As an aside, there’s a great photo op at the parking lot between the industrial park and the actual refinery at Mongstad – awesome postindustrial views there. Someone should shoot their wedding photos there.) I tagged HÂkon the Good’s burial mound, the coastal heath museum and a good restaurant we found tucked away by the waterside – but I would have LOVED to see other peoples’ finds as we drove around exploring.
Anyway, I poked around a bit to see what there is for Chicago, since we go there pretty often. Turns out ExploreChicago has set up a whole game on Foursquare where you can earn specific badges in Foursquare by checking in at specified locations. Here’s their Foursquare profile. I’m thinking of going for the hotdog badge.
Sadly, I won’t be using Foursquare when I visit Chicago, because of exorbitant data roaming prices. Unless some of those hotdog restaurants have wifi, I suppose.
I would love for the Norwegian tourist board to launch a Foursquare campaign (or several!) – but those data roaming prices mean that foreign visitors simply wouldn’t want to use it. However, Norwegians would – and if digi.no is right that every tenth Norwegian has an iPhone, there’d surely be a market for it.