Earlier this week, Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands attended a presentation of a special initiative of the Anne Frank Foundation and Facebook Netherlands for the International Day against Racism and Discrimination.
There is now a robot that can answer questions posed by visitors at the Anne Frank House about Anne and can tell her story using new software. It can recognise the context in which the questions are asked and answer appropriately. The Anne Frank House is one of the first few museums that is currently using this software.
His Royal Highness told those assembled about the robot that it “is much more than a fun gadget” and was created by a start-up. Prince Constantijn is a Special Envoy at Startup Delta.
The Prince added, “It is a way to reach people all over the world and tell them about the life of Anne Frank.”
His Royal Highness made sure to point out the negative impacts of discrimination and racism saying, “That is where new technology should be used for: to make better our lives and defeat the challenges in society.”
The museum director Ronald Leopold also said, “In these troubling times we live in, the story of Anne Frank is more relevant than ever.
“We are concerned about the fact that more the 70 years after the war, half of the visitors are under 30 and they know less than my generation. So it is important to give more historical context and more historical information to connect with that history.”
Prince Constantijn concurred, “The generations that lived through the horrors are slowly disappearing, so it is important to find new ways to tell a story that should never be forgotten.”
Of course, Anne Frank, born in Frankfurt, Germany, in 1929, was one of the many victims during the Holocaust becoming famous posthumously after the publication of her diary that she wrote in while in hiding in Amsterdam; the diary was, of course, The Diary of a Young Girl which had been saved by Miep Gies – one of those who helped hide her family in the Dutch capital.
The building that housed her and her family while they were hiding from the Nazis now houses the museum about her life. Anne died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp from typhoid in 1945. Her father, Otto, was the only survivor of the family and was responsible for her diary being published to the world.