Katie Bouman’s speech at the congress hearing about the formation of the Black Hole images and what is going to be the future of the project was commendable. Bouman who is a computer scientist at MIT whose picture went viral after the black hole images were released, said, “Seeing these images for the first time was truly amazing, and one of my life’s happiest memories.” The panel had Shep Doeleman who is an astrophysicist at Harvard University and director of the Event Horizon Telescope project, France Córdova, director of the National Science Foundation, which funded the project; and Colin Lonsdale, director of MIT’s Haystack Observatory. Panelists also shared their views on how they got interested all of a sudden in science and how such discoveries can contribute to the future generation.
Bouman conveyed during her speech, “I think that getting that interest in science to students at a young age will help them enter the STEM [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics] fields and make contributions to many different projects.” Her speech was commendable as she was focused on the importance of collaborating with the experiences level and discipline to achieve something that big which proved to be career changing for her as she conveyed, “Early-career scientists have been a driving force behind every aspect of the EHT, no one algorithm or person made this image; it required the talent of a global team of scientists and years of hard work to develop not only imaging techniques but also cutting-edge instrumentation, data processing, and theoretical simulations.”
After Bouman, it was Doeleman who conveyed, “[Being] bound by a common science vision, it really helps when you want to prevent a leak, We had 200 people from around the globe and nobody broke the code, nobody broke the silence, and I think it’s because we all understood the impact that it would have. We wanted to be able to tell our story, the scientific story, after the peer-reviewed publication of our results, so that’s a key part of it.” But the plan was not to stop the EHT any time soon because nobody knows what can come next.