QUALIA – a revolution in measuring audience feedback

How do you feel about art and culture? You might know, but how can you transmit your feelings to arts and culture organisations accurately?
Qualia can help measure your mood after seeing a show, exhibition, installation or movie and is set to revolutionise the way in which feedback data is collected.
Evaluating audience feedback is a vital task for culture organisations, giving them important information that can support funding applications or direct future programming. Usually this is done with feedback forms that present culture fans with paperwork just after they’ve experienced a show or a performance.
Organisations may miss out on important data about how the event went down with audiences, because visitors didn’t complete their post-event ‘homework’.
Enter Qualia (stage right). This is i-DAT’s ground-breaking digital technology and research project, which measures the mood of arts and culture audiences using a user-friendly interface that ‘gamifies’ the evaluation process.
Qualia enables users to gain tangible rewards for taking part – such as discounts and exclusive offers – making data collection easy, fun and beneficial.
Meanwhile, venues, organisations and the arts and culture sector generally benefit by receiving accurate feedback that can only improve culture experiences.
Qualia ingredients include:
Smile: Face and smile detection for live video feeds and images:
Web-Engine: Data capture and processing backend powering the rest of the Qualia projects
App: Personal scheduling and feedback mechanism for a visitor’s smartphone.
Probes: Public information kiosks and interactive feedback points
Realtime: Digital art installation
Sentiment: Natural language processing tool to calculate mood and emotion from social media
The analytics engine in Qualia has been collaboratively developed by i-DAT at Plymouth University with the audience evaluation researcher Eric Jensen of the University of Warwick, with designer Nathan Gale from Intercity and with Cheltenham Festivals 2013. The Qualia App was developed by Elixel.co.uk
It received funding from the prestigious Digital R&D Fund for the Arts, which is run by Nesta in partnership with Arts Council England and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.
Qualia has already powered digital evaluation processes for Cheltenham Jazz, Science, Music and Literature Festivals 2013, for Liverpool’s Flux Festival and it is set to underpin Plymouth’s new arts and culture app Artory.
Qualia is to be released as an Open Source platform, enabling  the widest take-up and development of the technology.