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Abstract. In this paper we give a pedagogical review of the recent observational results in cosmology from the study of type Ia supernovae and anisotropies in the cosmic microwave background. By providing consistent constraints on the cosmological parameters, these results paint a concrete picture of our present-day universe. We present this new picture and show how it can be used to answer some of the basic questions that cosmologists have been asking for several decades. This paper is most appropriate for students of general relativity and/or relativistic cosmology.
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