The Queen gets Insta-savvy with first-ever Instagram post
Image credit: Simon Dawson/PA Wire
Queen Elizabeth II has passed another social media milestone by posting an image on Instagram for the first time as she announced the Science Museum’s new summer exhibition, Top Secret, on Thursday – 43 years after she sent her first email.
Rather than opting for the always-popular selfie as her inaugural update, she used the official royal family account to share a letter sent by 19th-century mathematician Charles Babbage to Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert.
Known as the pioneer of the computer, Babbage wrote to Albert in 1843 about his Analytical Engine – a machine which could perform calculations using punched cards and had a memory unit to store numbers.
“Today, as I visit the Science Museum I was interested to discover a letter from the Royal Archives, written in 1843 to my great-great-grandfather Prince Albert,” she wrote in the post on The Royal Family Instagram account, using a touch screen iPad at the museum to send the message.
“Today, I had the pleasure of learning about children’s computer coding initiatives and it seems fitting to me that I publish this Instagram post at the Science Museum which has long championed technology, innovation and inspired the next generation of inventors,” she added to the account.
To conclude, Her Majesty signed the post “Elizabeth R.”
Standing in the Science Museum’s new Smith Centre – located at South Kensington in London – the Queen was applauded after she shared the post on the royal Instagram account, which was launched in 2013 and now has 4.6 million followers.
Commenting on the image shared by the Queen, the Science Museum wrote, “We are honoured that while opening the Smith Centre at the Science Museum, Your Majesty shared a post on Instagram for the first time.”
“We’re thrilled that the image is of correspondence from the Royal Archive between Charles Babbage and Your Majesty’s great-great-grandfather Prince Albert about the Difference Engine No.1 on display in our Making the Modern World gallery.”
Throughout her reign, the Queen has encountered a rapidly-changing world of technology, from the introduction of colour television to touch smartphones and the internet.
Science Museum director Sir Ian Blatchford commented on this experience seen by Queen Elizabeth II and said, “[Her Majesty] has seen more technological change than any of us can imagine. She is remarkably well-informed about big trends, things like miniaturisation”.
“She is also very well-informed about computing power, because what she has seen is vast computers shrink to a smaller scale,” Sir Blatchford added.
Throughout the years, the Queen has undergone many technological milestones, which includes personally uploading a video onto YouTube during a visit to the Google offices in London in 2008. In 2014, she posted her first tweet under her own name to declare the opening of the new Information Age Galleries.
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