theodp writes "Does it make you sad that you're too grown up to earn Scouting Merit Badges? Well, thanks to the PhDs at Google, you can now start earning Google News badges as you read articles about your favorite topics. The more you read, the higher rank you'll attain; Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and finally, Ultimate. They say, 'Your badges are private by default, but if you want, you can share your badges with your friends. Tell them about your news interests, display your expertise, start a conversation or just plain brag about how well-read you are.'"