Nature.com, PhysicsWeb, and the BBC all report on the latest results from the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search. ‘The most powerful search yet for the Universe’s missing matter has come up empty handed, contradicting an earlier study that claimed to have seen new particles.’ ‘A favoured theory is that the dark matter consists of Wimps (weakly interacting massive particles) about a thousand times more massive than a proton, one of the particles found in an atom’s nucleus… on the rare occasions a Wimp strikes an ordinary atom, the effect should be noticeable.’ ‘Writing in the Physical Review Letters, the team says that while a detection has yet to occur, there is now a better idea of how much dark matter must exist.’ They ‘hope to improve the sensitivity of the experiment by another factor of 20 over the next few years.'” — timothy (http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=04/05/05/2039206&mode=thread&tid=126&tid=134)

“The theory of dark matter is based on the assumption that the basic properties of the Universe have never changed over time. If the intrinsic properties of space itself HAVE changed significantly, then there is no need to postulate such a thing as dark matter. Scientists are very reluctant to accept new data that shakes their preconceived pet ideas to their foundations. It took over 200 years after Roemer first measured a finite light speed, for the majority of scientists to accept the fact that light did not get instantaneously from point A to point B, as was the belief for centuries. In the same way, the majority of scientists today refuse to even consider the idea that some very fundamental “constants” may have changed dramatically since the beginning of time. For example, the cause for the “Red Shift” of distant star light is traditionally attributed to the Doppler effect, and in light of that INTERPRETATION of the cause for an observed fact, (the shifted light) all sorts of cosmological observations are very difficult to explain. Humans (including scientists) like to assume that certain things stay the same for all time, but that is a fervently desired wish based on faith, not observed fact. It seems that in the physical universe, there is nothing as constant as change! AAW” — arminw Arminw, You point out the huge assumption whenever historical facts are attempted to be gleened from current data which is called Uniformitarianism. (Uniformitarianism, is the belief in the Uniformity Principal which states: that everything observed today is uniform with the past and therefore experiments done in the present can give answer to the past.)I believe that another fundamental assumption has been overlooked with regards to Dark Matter and that is: the Big Bang.

“Now, wait a minute!” says the crowd “we know the Big Bang occurred.” That’s right – of course we know the Big Bang occurred because A) we looked and discovered Universe was expanding and B) we used Uniformitarianism to roll back the clock so to speak. Unfortunately, recent observations (with newer, more accurate instruments) have replaced the old ones and they don’t fit the model quite as well. The universe is expanding but differently than originally thought and – well – it seems to make it all work we would need about 70% more mass than we can currently observe. The answer? Dark Matter.

That’s right, Dark Matter. We can’t see or observe it, but it must be there because our (theoretical) model says so and we’re quite sure that a model created by scientists couldn’t be flawed or even slightly askew.

Now this is that part that amuses me. If we are honest for a moment the theory of the Big Bang exists to remove the necessity of a supreme being. All religious issues aside, something had to get this crazy top spinning (Don’t forget the Law of Conservation of Matter and Energy) so either A) a God/Higher Power/Supreme Being/Q (for the Star Trek fans out there) at least got the ball rolling or B) It got rolling by itself. Enter the Big Bang: there was nothing, then there was something, and then it exploded (because the something was RREEAALLYY dense).

If you don’t see the humor yet, I’ll lay it out here. Scientists are currently spending time and quality research brains, not to mention Millions of dollars trying to find something that can’t be seen or observed so that they can rest assurred that something that they can’t see or observe doesn’t exist. :D