The Slayer and Ever-Changing Moods
Buffy was once a seemingly ordinary girl. She didn't choose to be the Slayer--the responsibility was thrust upon her. I hope you will excuse Buffy for occasionally being combative or showing attitude. Slayers have to defend ourselves.
Another fascinating book picked up at AAAS was "Brave New Universe" by Paul Halpern and Paul Wesson. This is an entertaining book suitable for the general reader. One chapter is entitled: "Ever-Changing Moods: Did Nature's Constants Evolve?" How the world has changed!
"If signals once traveled from one part of the universe to another faster than they do now, that could explain why space is so uniform. Through a rapid and far-reaching process of thermal equilibrium, temperatures in the early universe would have had ample opportunity to even out. Also, any significant pockets of high or low-density matter would tend to even out over time through either the release or accumulation of energy. Although such processes would violate standard conservation laws, they would be permitted of the speed of light could vary. This levelling out would lead automatically to a flat cosmos. Hence, the horizon and flatness issues would vanish, with no inflationary smoothing needed to accomplish these feats.
"Furthermore, alterations in the speed of light would affect astronomers' measurements of the velocities of distant galaxies. The supernova results of Schmidt's and Perlmutter's groups, among other measurements, would require re-interpretation. Consequently, the universe might not be accelerating after all."
The odds are a thousand to one against, but we are winning!