NASA astronaut 'checks in' on Foursquare from space

NASA astronaut and International Space Station Commander Doug Wheelock became the first person to "check in" on Foursquare from space, doing so on Friday when he registered his location at the space station.

Foursquare is a social-networking application that allows users to broadcast their location coordinates to their friends. The check-in unlocked a NASA Explorer Badge for Wheelock. Foursquare users earn badges as they visit new places or frequent a site.

"You are now 220 miles above Earth traveling at 17,500 mph and unlocked the NASA Explorer Badge! Show this badge and get a free scoop of astronaut ice cream," Foursquare notified Wheelock.

Wheelock's "check in" was designed to begin a partnership between NASA and Foursquare aimed at promoting NASA achievements and data to Foursquare users.

Dennis Crowley, chief executive officer and co-founder of Foursquare, said the cosmic check-in "blew my mind." 

A social-media adviser for NASA, the company JESS3, said the effort also made NASA locations on earth Foursquare-ready, so that when users check in, they can learn more about the agency. 

JESS3 president Leslie Bradshaw's take: "They may need to rethink the term geosocial after this check-in."