A decade ago, astronomers discovered that what is true for your car keys is not true for the galaxies. Having been impelled apart by the force of the Big Bang, the galaxies, in defiance of cosmic gravity, are picking up speed on a dash toward eternity. If they were keys, they would be shooting for the ceiling.
“That is how shocking this was,” Dr. Livio said.
But what I just don't quite understand is this kind of reaction:
It is still shocking. Although cosmologists have adopted a cute name, dark energy, for whatever is driving this apparently antigravitational behavior on the part of the universe, nobody claims to understand why it is happening, or its implications for the future of the universe and of the life within it, despite thousands of learned papers, scores of conferences and millions of dollars’ worth of telescope time. It has led some cosmologists to the verge of abandoning their fondest dream: a theory that can account for the universe and everything about it in a single breath.
Forget about the fact that I don't quite believe that such a thing is possible (i.e. "account for the universe and everything about it in a single breath") due to my view that the "TOE" is a fallacy. But why are they giving up so quickly? I mean, the discovery of dark energy has only been about 10 years old! This is a blink of an eye! Condensed matter physicists had dealt with the mysteries of high-Tc superconductors for 20 years already, and you don't hear them giving up! And they have more data and more discoveries to content with.
If the Dark Energy Survey really gets off the ground, there's a good chance that more evidence on the nature of dark energy will be revealed. Aren't people just salivating for that kind of information? I don't know what is there to be discouraged about. If I were in this field, I'd say that this might be some of the most exciting time to be alive!