Throughout the past week of Olympic sports, races and emotional medal ceremonies it’s been really interesting to log onto Twitter and see how your friends are reacting to the events on screen. Well now a new project called Emoto aims to capture all of our emotions from Twitter about the games and turn them into dynamic data visualisations that move about in real time. Bear with us here…
The Emoto project was designed by Mortiz Stefaner, a data artist based in Germany, but it was funded by the British Arts Council to offer viewers a different angle of the events over the next few weeks.
If you visit the project now over at www.emoto2012.org you’ll see a series of topics and coloured ribbons, which are visualisations of sentiment. Tiffany O’Callaghan from New Scientist explains how it works:
“The system scans English-language Twitter accounts for tweets about the games and sifts for words that convey emotion, revealing some interesting insights about the way the world’s biggest sporting event is driving public conversation. In the swarm visualisations, for a given subject, the total number of tweets is indicated by a dotted grey circle. Whether feelings are positive or negative about the topic is shown by the size of the coloured ribbons that extend out of the circle.”
It’s no surprise that Stefaner was influenced by innovative, real time human emotion project We Feel Fine, which has been literally bouncing around the web tracking our emotions for a few years now. However, Emoto is unique in that it attempts to visualise emotions around just the one particular event.
Although some question whether there are issues with sentiment analysis, including sarcasm or regional words, the Emoto project is a really fascinating accompaniment to the Olympics.[Via New Scientist]
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