Gamification, or using game mechanics in non-game applications, is the new black. It has become fashionable as game designers turn their talents from creating fun games to creating fun web sites and other cool experiences for major brands. But it’s definitely not a new idea, said Gabe Zichermann (right), organizer of the first-ever Gamification Summit , which took place yesterday in San Francisco. He said that many of the ideas about loyalty and reward programs have been repackaged in a better form with the latest craze around the topic. But many of those ideas have met with varying success over the past decades. Certainly, gamification has buzz.