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Manuel Gómez creates virtual tour of Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial

sculpture of Anne Frank at sunset
The Anne Frank Memorial at sunset, photo by Manuel Gómez.

The Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial is a well-known place for Boiseans to visit, learn about human rights, or simply reflect and enjoy the ambient sounds of geese and the nearby Boise River. Those fortunate enough to live in Boise can bike, walk or drive to the memorial. But now, thanks to Manuel Gómez, a Spanish lecturer in the Department of World Languages, anyone can enjoy a virtual tour of the memorial.

Gómez, who also is a researcher in the design and application of virtual reality to teach Spanish and culture, is a frequent memorial visitor, and wanted to make this experience available to everybody while maintaining, and even enhancing, its pedagogical component.

Over several days, Gómez visited the memorial with a 360 camera and an ambient microphone to capture the essence of the space. Later, using 3DVista Pro virtual tour creation software, he put all of the pieces together – panoramas, 2D photos, sound, texts, URLs, etc. – to recreate and enhance the virtual visit to the memorial. The tour includes 20 panoramas and more than 40 photos; ambient sound and informative audio recordings; links to the UN Declaration on Human Rights; a link to Greg Stone’s website, who sculpted the Anne Frank statue; and translations into a few of the languages taught by Boise State’s world languages department, thanks to several world languages faculty members.

The virtual tour is available online here and can be experienced on a computer (recommended), a smartphone, or even as a virtual reality experience.

The project was awarded a grant by the Idaho Film Collection, and has been donated to the Wassmuth Center to be added to their website soon.