Illustration of a badger with a laptop

Introducing Azure Heroes

A new and fun way to earn digital collectibles for meaningful impact in the technical community.

Our Mission

Our mission is to empower technical practitioners of all backgrounds and in every organisation to achieve more. In that spirit, we created something unique to inspire you to learn, coach and build on Azure and to promote healthy and inclusive behaviours within the community.

Azure Heroes aims to reward individuals for verifiable acts of impact such as coaching, creating demos, building sample code, blogging about Azure or completing certain challenges​. Community members that have demonstrated their contributions will be recognised with badges across a number of categories.

Become an Azure Hero!

You could be recognised with your very own digital badgers for the real contributions you make in the community. Our Azure developer community engagement managers will be on the lookout for individuals that volunteer, mentor or teach others and who are contributing to strong and sustainable communities.

How it works:

1. Nominate yourself or a community hero around you. Community members that have demonstrated verifiable impact in one of several categories will be chosen to receive a badge

2. Selected recipients receive a personalised QR code which can be scanned with your phone - follow the simple instructions to claim your digital badger

3. You are now an Azure Hero! Be sure to share your digital badger by posting the link you received in your wallet to your favourite social media using the hashtag #azureheroes

Badgers

Illustration of inclusive leader character

Inclusive Leader

[Limited supply 100]


The Inclusive Leader badger has worked to ensure that the communities and events they are involved in are inclusive and have adopted a code of conduct which promotes a diverse line-up of speakers and audience members.

Illustration of content hero character

Content Hero

[Limited supply 250]


The Content Hero badger is a true contributor to the community and has created original content including the development of sample code or collections of learning resources. Additionally, they've documented and shared their experiences and lessons learned to help others to build their solutions on Azure.

Illustration of community hero character

Community Hero

[Limited supply 550]


The Community Hero badger is recognised for sharing their knowledge at conferences, meetups or other relevant events. Contribution can be made through speaking at or organising meetups/ conferences or by being an active member of the community who are sharing content.

Illustration of mentor character

Mentor

[Limited supply 800]


The Mentor badger is recognised as one who shares their knowledge and empowers the more junior members of the community by guiding and coaching them to acquire more hands-on skills. Mentoring is critical to career development and for building skills and achieving long-term career goals.

Illustration of maker character

Maker

[Limited supply 10k]


The Maker badger is recognised as being a source of innovation and for using tools to improve the world around them. We give this recognition to people who complete specific challenges as makers in OpenHacks, bootcamps and hackathons or for hands-on work with Azure without guided instructions.

Under the hood:

Microsoft and Enjin have collaborated in a local pilot to create a blockchain based recognition programme. The Azure Heroes badgers were created in a number of original and unique designs which have been tokenised into a digital asset on the Ethereum public blockchain. Here are some key things to know:

• Each season, our badgers will be minted in verifiably limited quantities and recorded on the public blockchain

• We will continue to issue badgers to the community for various achievements until supplies are depleted

• Blockchain technology is being used for issuance and transactions which means that as a recipient of a tokenised badger, you take ownership of a digital collectible in the form of a non-fungible token (NFT)

• Some badgers are more difficult to earn than others and have a verifiably fixed supply which you can see for yourself on the public ledger.

• Because each badger is scarce with its own transaction hash, and not simply a copiable image stored on a central server, they require a blockchain wallet to safely store them

• Distribution of badgers is done with a QR code which after scanning will present the recipient with the option to install the wallet

• After initial receipt of the NFT Badger in the Enjin wallet, the owner can send the token to any public Ethereum address, or destroy it if it's no longer desired

Follow #azureheroes for more information. Available in selected Western European countries.

1. Content Hero badger
  • Created at least three valuable Azure content pieces within 6 month for blogs, webinars, podcasts or events 
  • Created tutorials, how-to guides, or sample code that’s being shared to others for free in an open GitHub repo 
  • Have generated at least three pull requests that have been merged into our workshop repos (MCW and others) 
  • Core-contributor of an Azure related open-source project (including readme, license, latest activity on project "one month ago", code of conduct)"
2. Community Hero badger
  • Co-hosted a local Azure related meetup 
  • Hosted free workshops or trainings on Azure related technology 
  • Delivered at least one talk or presentation on Azure at a Meetup or conference in the last 6 months 
  • Mentored and recruited new people to join the community meetups and events as a speaker
3. Inclusive Leader badger
  • Organisers and core-contributors of programmes and events which regularly target under-represented communities 
  • Seek out speakers which come from under-represented communities at least 50% of the time 
  • Have actively shared assets, guides and other resources that in turn help other organisers make their events and communities more inclusive 
  • Have organised Azure related events that have a diversity scholarship that secures free entrance to the events 
  • Has regularly offered video streaming with closed captioning or other accessibility options
4. Mentor badger
  • Coach, proctor or mentor who has dedicated at least three days to support others in their learning at a an OpenHack, hackathon or bootcamp 
  • Actively coaching an up-and-coming developer, for example someone from under-represented communities in tech 
5. Maker badger
  • Any participant who completes a specific challenge at a hackathon, OpenHack or bootcamps and hands-on or for hands-on work with Azure without guided instructions
  • Applicable also to hardware hackathons, IoT projects, 3D, Mixed Reality and others in the broader maker scope

  • We're using Ethereum, a public platform that can be used to create any type of smart contract including those which represent digital assets called tokens 
  • A token is an Ethereum smartcontract that represents an asset or a service  
  • Specifically, when you receive a cute badger in your wallet, you're actually taking ownership of Non-fungible Tokens (NFT) which is unique and one-of-a-kind.  
  • NFT's are not interchangeable with other tokens of the same kind and usually have different values.  
  • Our NFT's, though they have no monetary value, are digital assets which represent the various badges we have created, some in verifiably limited quantities 
  • NFT’s are ideal for the minting and issuance of badges which have a unique set of parameters. We chose to use the ERC1155 token which has unique properties which allows its metadata to be modified over time and is the new accepted standard for minting both fungible and non-fungible assets on the public Ethereum platform

Microsoft is a member of the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance and also chairs the Token Taxonomy Initiative that created the token framework.

Learn more about The Token Taxonomy Framework which bridges the gap between blockchain developers, line of business executives and legal/regulators allowing them to work together to model existing and define new business models and networks based on tokens. 

Azure Blockchain Tokens Preview makes deploying and managing standard tokens easier than ever. It’s built on the standards developed by the Token Taxonomy Initiative, an open consortium of blockchain industry leaders. Confidently use tokens across blockchain networks in Azure, choosing from a growing set of initiative-compliant templates developed by Microsoft and partners.

Some examples of how Microsoft is building on public blockchain infrastructure like Ethereum and Bitcoin: 

  • Project ION (Identity Overlay Network), is a sidetree-based DID network which runs atop the Bitcoin blockchain 
  • Decentralized & Collaborative AI on Blockchain is being used by engineers at Microsoft to democratise AI and machine learning on Ethereum, making these typically centralised and costly systems more accessible to everyone