Meet Katie Bouman, the Genius behind the Blackhole Photograph!

James Marshall
December 1, 2019

An image of a black hole captured much of the internet and the world on Wednesday, and now we know a 29-year-old woman was behind it. She shared her pure moment of excitement watching the image being reconstructed on Facebook yesterday.

Katie Bouman's work was key to the first ever photograph of a black hole, taken by Event Horizon.

What she and a team of 200 global scientists did is unbelievable. Katie Bouman, the photogenic face of the algorithm reached the front page multiple times with over 100,000 upvotes. Despite the tall order, an worldwide team of more than 200 researchers unveiled the first-ever image of a black hole on Wednesday.

Bouman has named the algorithm CHIRP (Continuous High-resolution Image Reconstruction using Patch priors) and it was needed to combine data from the eight radio telescopes around the world working under EHT, and turn it into a cohesive image.

"The Black Hole photo is very impressive, but I'm more interested in where they got these 80TB drives", said one Redditor.

Katie Bouman led development of the computer programme while she was still a student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Congrats on this wonderful contribution to science, Katie!

According to Science Alert, the first image of the black hole by the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) proves that Einstein was right about his general theory of relativity.

But because we can't celebrate a woman in history without a few flubs, several media outlets neglected to acknowledge that she is no longer a graduate student but a professional with her Ph.D., which she received in 2017.

"We've taken a number of steps to address this including surfacing more authoritative content across our site for people searching for news-related topics, beginning to reduce recommendations of borderline content and showing information panels with more sources where they can fact check information for themselves", a YouTube spokesperson told Business Insider. Some did call it out, though.

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably come across the new black hole image at least a couple times this week.

"So while I appreciate the congratulations on a result that I worked hard on for years, if you are congratulating me because you have a sexist vendetta against Katie, please go away and reconsider your priorities in life", he said.

- Dr. Lauren Drogos (@LDrogosPhD) April 11, 2019Say her name!

Katie Bouman has been celebrated as a female STEM icon this week after pictures of the black hole were made public. "She wanted vitality and got it".

Bouman says that most of the time she's not focused on the fact that she's in a field where women are the minority.

Dr Bouman's method of processing this raw data was said to be instrumental in the creation of the striking image. It's nearly like seeing one pixel in an image (but it's in a different kind of domain).

Indeed, it soon did.

Munn is very active on social media and uses it for a little of everything, including speaking out when she learned a registered sex offender had been given a role in The Predator, slamming the parents involved in the college admissions scandal and even clearing up plastic surgery rumors.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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