Explore for FREE at Techtopia


All ages welcome - learn about what activities are on offer

30 May - 3 Jun

All Ages

During the festival Polka will be taken over by technology. All ages can come and have fun exploring the building  for FREE!

  • GestureTek Interactive Floor

Come play on Sensory GroundFX – an accessible virtual reality play environment for people of all ages and abilities. This was designed to give opportunities for everyone, including those with limited mobility, to experience video games that might be inaccessible on other platforms. The technology is designed to track body movement, responding to even the slightest gesture with dynamically changing images and effects.

More than 25 applications are included with the system. Designed to spark natural curiosity, applications allow the participator to experience activities such as setting off fireworks, cracking ice on a virtual frozen pond, swimming amongst sealife in a virtual pond or playing a virtual sport. Themed applications are also available to celebrate holidays, and to teach children about concepts such as numbers, weather, geography and animals.

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  • Art coded Wallpaper

Easy to draw, playful and poetic, the artcode puts the human back into Computer Human Interaction. Images are programmed by observing some simple drawing rules, which once mastered enable the designer to create all manner of interactive imagery. The artcode points to a future, where interactive devices such as smart phones and tablets are triggered by artwork, patterns, motifs and tags that adorn our built environment, our public spaces, our homes, our clothes and our objects.

Download the app and simply point your phone at the pictures….see what Polka productions it links to!

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  • Prediction Machine

The Prediction Machine is an interactive artwork that marks ‘moments of climate change’ in our everyday lives, tracked and recorded by a machine that prints out predictions based on end of the pier fortune telling machines. Next to it stands the Promises Machine inviting you to write your own promise or wish for the future, find out more about the science behind the predictions and take part in the new addition, the Future Machine where you can sign up to receive messages from the future as your prediction unfolds.

The Prediction Machine has been created by Rachel Jacobs, in collaboration with Matt Little, Ian Jones (Sherwood Wood), Matthew Gates, Robin Shackford, Juliet Robson, Dr Candice Howarth, Prof Rob Wilby and Dr Carlo Buontempo, Lucy Veale, Upesh Mistry, Thomas Steffen, Chris Sweetman, Stephen Flood and John Barton, and participants in all of the parallel workshops. Developed with the ‘Performing Data’ research team and Dominic Price at the Mixed Reality Lab/Horizon Digital Economy Research, University of Nottingham. With financial support from the Arts Council of England, University of Nottingham, EPSRC Impact Acceleration Account, EPSRC, RCUK and Radar LU Arts.

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  • Synchronicity Table

“Synchronicity” is part of the AniMotion touring exhibition

It’s an interactive table developed using a depth camera to track hand movements and trigger video animations mapped onto paper structures on the table surface. Created in collaboration with AYE AYE – Currently in Mansfield Museum & Art Gallery until April 2017.

A big thanks to Applecart and London Sculpture Workshop for being part of the process in various different ways. And Obviously thanks to Darts Doncaster, 20-21 Visual Arts Centre and The Civic, Barnsley for this amazing opportunity!

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  • Screen Time for Babies discussion area

How does the use of touchscreen devices affect our little ones?

This is a question that has probably crossed the mind of many recent parents given the sudden increase in touchscreen devices in our lives and the enthusiasm most children show for using them. According to a recent survey, family ownership of touchscreens has increased from 7% in 2011 to 71% in 2014 (OfCom, 2014). This is a huge change in a child’s early media environment and as Developmental Scientists it made us wonder how early exposure to such devices might influence the way our children are developing. Currently there is very little scientific research investigating this topic. This project is the first attempt to fill this gap.

Join us at Polka theatre to become part of the discussion and answer questions on how much your little one might be affected by touch screen devices. Watch out for further ongoing projects to sign up for.

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Ticket Prices

Admission to these installations and events are FREE

Age Policy

All ages welcome