Some say that in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. But what do we know about our early universe and how we got here? How do we know that our ideas about the early universe are right? What is dark matter and dark energy and why do we think it exists in the first place?
All of the matter in the universe expanded from a single point. It doesn’t matter much what that means, though. To beg the question is to ask what happened before time began. And because of events that happened during the the inflationary epoch, we can no longer see all of the details of how the universe looked at the beginning of time.
But we won’t ask those questions today. Here we will talk about the current state of cosmology given by The Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe — the reigning Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation [CMBR] experiment that gives us our best data from the early universe. Within a year, though, we expect a new and improved data set from The Planck Satellite.