[SPHEREON-005] Factom® Badges

Secured
#3
Factom Badges update

This is an intermediate update for the grant we were awarded in May 2019 to create Factom® Badges.

Factom® Badges are visual tokens of achievement, affiliation, authorization, or other trust relationships, sharable and verifiable across the web.

Because Factom® Badges are based on an open standard (https://openbadges.org/), recipients can combine multiple badges from different Issuers to tell the complete story of their verifiable achievements—both online and offline.

The intended solution will be comprised of three parts:
  • The Issuer application will enable an Issuer to define and create badges. The Issuer will also issue a badge to a User.

  • The User application will be able to receive (open standard) badges and to store these on their own device (Smartphone; iOS and Android). The User will be able to share the badges with third parties.

  • The Validation application will be able to receive badges and read the embedded data. The Receiver will be able to verify who issued the badge and that it was issued to the User.

The first sprints we dived further in researching this and evaluating possible approaches. We discovered that OpenBadges solution Badgr (https://badgr.org/) is pretty far along and complete and would serve a good basis for our proposed solution.

We started by creating an issuance application for Factom badges, this is the application that can be used by the school to issue badges to their students.

Badges can be issued to an email, URL or phone number. For now, we can intercept the badge before it is sent to a user. The next step is to be able to send an issuance request (unbaked badge) to the student. When a student confirms an issuance request, the badge will get “baked” (=created) and is registered on the Factom blockchain. When this step is completed the baked badge gets send to the student.

For the student we are currently creating a rudimentary mobile application where badges can be collected and kept.

We started on the user registration and logging in to the app. There will be separate roles for students and their caregivers respectively. Currently we are working on the main screens, one with an overview to see the issuance requests, a page that shows all badges that have been received and a detail page to view badges.

The next steps will be to actually bake and receive badges.
 
Secured
#13
The Factom Badges project is part of a bigger project on national and EU level and has been progressing slowly.

We have created a basic prototype that currently is being used to present as a proof of technology to different stakeholders – schools, students, employers and regulators – in order to collect feedback. This is an important step, but obviously takes time, more time than anticipated.

We have an educational institute, a larger group of schools for young adults (somewhat comparable to a group of high schools) that wants to run a pilot with this solution. They are currently looking for a budget to improve the UX/UI of the Apps.

Based on the feedback we’ll refactor the App and finish the APIs for creating and managing these OpenBadges based Factom Badges.

We expect to share the results of this with the community in the next month.
 
Secured
#18
Hi @Niels Klomp, @mboender
I think more than 2 weeks have passed since you promessed during the grant round to give an update and to publish the public repo about this grant.

I know you are certainly busy. That is why people have been patient (first question from me is from beginning of October). I think we can all consider we have provided enough time to answer all of this particularly if we consider Marteen's post about an update in November which did not happen. I have also understood that you were promoting this solution during an event in Spain. Therefore I wonder what prevent you to publish an update and the solution repo.


As a reminder the questions are:
- status of the Factom badges development?
- Did you complete the refactor work?
- Can you publish (even in the case the refactor work has not been completed) the repo publicly? As an extra question what prevent you from doing it from the start of the project since it intends to be an open source one?

Thank you
 
Secured
#19
I will leave the rest of the update to @mboender as he is the Product Owner together with Abe in our company.

Factom Badges will see a milestone roughly around the holidays. Both some press and other interested parties will get a demo of the MVP on January 13th. This sprint and next sprint (so 4 weeks), should get us ready to make that happen.

The reason why we cannot open-source everything from the start is that we have to make decisions on the commercial parts versus the open-source parts. Up until now we have made decisions to make more available open-source than we initially envisioned. I do not expect that to change.

The fact we cannot share everything right from the start is that we have more stakeholders than only the community. I know that is not what you want to hear probably, but it is a reality and it sometimes puts us in the position we cannot disclose everything at every point in time.

You can hold this grant on MVP and completion halfway January.
 
Secured
#21
Just to give a quick update. Next week there is a demo for the Blockchange/education project for interested parties. We are doing some final touches on it this sprint. After that we will make the Factom specific changes and will host a Factom Protocol Badge solution for everybody to use, to both issue and receive badges using Factom. We will create a video and medium post about the solution.

Part of the solution is a verification application, that can be run completely independently by any party. This is very much similar to our document-verify.com and some other community members proprietary solutions. Except we will be making this fully open-source, fully configurable and templatable using generator, for any interested party to run it independently. It will support badges, DIDs, the new signature spec, OpenAPI, Sphereon's proprietary APIs etc. The design has been paid by Sphereon and created by another company in the community (user: Losmilos). To give a bit of insight. The above grant roughly pays for the design/generation of that single small webapp alone (not any code).

The webapp can both register and verify files. For the badges solutions it will be hosted by us and only verify badges. Right now it only displays that a badge is valid and has been registered on Factom. In the future it will also display metadata about the badge, like you will see in another component in this thread.

Don't mind the colors, these can be changed by anybody running the app.


Introduction page for badge verification:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.29.33.png

Upload file for verification:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.30.23.png

Verification result for the badge:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.34.28.png
 
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Secured
#23
Creating a badge is done using a modified version of Badgr, an open badges compatible Badge Server, which now has integration into Factom. We will be hosting an instance for the protocol to use. Anybody can register to issue badges and receive badges.

A new badge has been created:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.19.44.png

Award the badge to a recipient:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.22.50.png

Received by email:
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.36.54.png

Independently verify the badge using a centralized service (badgecheck.io)
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.27.34.png
Screenshot 2020-01-08 at 11.26.46.png
 
Secured
#24
Then there is the standalone backpack mobile app for Android and IoS:

Importing the badge into the App from e-mail (other possibilities like whatsapp etc also available)
1.jpg 2.jpg


Entering the pin as a parent:
4.jpg

Earned badges/competences/certificates:
5.jpg

Badge/certificate details:
7.jpg

Sharing the badge with others for verification:
8.jpg 9.jpg 10.jpg
 
Secured
#26
Just to give a quick update. Next week there is a demo for the Blockchange/education project for interested parties. We are doing some final touches on it this sprint. After that we will make the Factom specific changes and will host a Factom Protocol Badge solution for everybody to use, to both issue and receive badges using Factom. We will create a video and medium post about the solution.
The webapp can both register and verify files. For the badges solutions it will be hosted by us and only verify badges. Right now it only displays that a badge is valid and has been registered on Factom. In the future it will also display metadata about the badge, like you will see in another component in this thread.
Hi Niels and thanks for the update! It will be exciting to see badges on Factom go live!

One question regarding the above: you say that you still need to make the Factom specific changes and will then host the Factom Protocol Badge solution, but then you mentioned that the web app can already verify badges, which are registered on Factom.

Is the demo that you will be doing (and hence the current version of the app) already registering badges on Factom or is it not yet the case? I understand that for the purposes of the demo you can also have a fully centralized solution for storing issued badges and validating them, but in case badges are already being recorded on mainnet or testnet, could you point me to some example entries, as I'm curious to have a look.
 
Secured
#28
Thanks @Niels Klomp for this update.

When you say it is using Factom right now do you mean that Factom is used as a timestamp proof or the Badges are litteraly recorded on Factom? As Valentin, I am also interested in an example entry.

Moreover, you mention an open source verify application supporting different standards (this is nice in order to integrate over time the different solutions developed in our community and to promote interoperability of the platforms) and specifally the new signature spec. Is this standard already in place through a FIP or is it still to be defined? In this latter case, where are discussions taking place? I did not see anythin in the Factom Core Developement Discord. Am I looking at wrong place?
 
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Secured
#29
Yesterday we had a successful presentation of our MVP for BlockChange.EU based on Factom and OpenBadges.

There were about 25 people present from school-, government- and employer organizations.
_IMG5162_small.JPG


We explained the background of the project and the 3 main applications. Two young students were proud to show of their first badges:
_IMG5156_small.JPG


We did a live demo in which we created and issued a new badge, as well as did the verification through the new portal as well as the standard OpenBadges verification site.
_IMG5196_small.JPG


For those who want to check out the actual Badge and verification sites:

The Badge:
1578911351913.png

Verification:
https://verify.blockchange.dev.sphereon.com/verifieren

OpenBadges verification:
https://badgecheck.io/
(use demo.sphereon@gmail.com as the address in the email field and click the [Add another] button. Then click [Verify] )


Next steps
This presentations was an important milestone for the project. Using this MVP we can now lobby and pitch for additional funding from relevant stakeholders. The next weeks we'll start discussions on this and how to extend the MVP in co-creation with other software companies in the educational domain and roll this out to other students and schools.


Community
We can make the 3 applications (as is) available to interested parties upon request to 'play' with. No general release yet, as there is no documentation released yet. We'll continue further development (mainly APIs for now) and documentation.
 
Secured
#30
Thank you for the thorough update @Sphereon.

I do realize that it is not easy to "wrap up" this grant at the current point in time, due to the development still being ongoing, the issues with what parts can be open sourced and the lacking documentation at this time.

However, having too many "open grants" is an issue for the standing parties and broader community as it becomes hard to keep up with the awarded but incomplete grants, and I would appreciate if you could outline which steps needs to be taken at the current time to wrap up the Factom Badges grant.

I.e what I would like to see is a revised timeline of activities and milestones.