Dominoes are an age-old favorite toy. While some enjoy setting them up in long lines and then toppling them over, others use dominoes as an effective way of demonstrating the “domino effect” – the phenomenon whereby one small change leads to chain reactions with large (and often unexpected) effects.
Dominos are rectangular pieces of wood crafted into rectangles with a central line running down their middles, dividing each end into squares separated by this line. One square displays spots called pip markers while the other remains blank – these pieces of furniture have been around for centuries, and are used to play numerous classic games that span across centuries and continents. A typical domino set contains 28 pieces while larger sets may exist for those seeking an extended game experience.
The term “domino” likely comes from its early pieces featuring black surfaces with ivory faces reminiscent of priest’s cloaks worn over white surplices – this name first appearing in France around 1750 when used to refer to long hooded cloaks worn at carnival or masquerade events.
People playing domino usually place tiles in a straight row and then begin pushing over one at a time using either their hands or other objects, until all have fallen over into a “layout.” Whoever creates the best layout wins the game.
Basic domino layouts may be straightforward, yet complex designs can be created using special domino markers with numbers on both sides that indicate their value. There are various rules governing these games as players compete to build intricate domino designs faster than their rivals do.
Many people enjoy setting world records for the most dominoes arranged in a circle. Doing this requires meticulous planning and the perfect combination of factors that allows the entire chain to fall as planned. Hevesh, an accomplished domino artist, notes that when beginning any new installation she always starts by considering its theme or purpose and creating a list of images or words which might fit.
Once her layout has been planned, Hevesh adds the final touches to prepare the dominoes for their big moment. She makes sure all pieces will be placed correctly, matching ends of every domino with its neighbors so when one falls it will fling through and touch others before also falling over immediately. Furthermore, Hevesh takes great care to create an even and smooth chain by spreading out her dominoes as much as possible in her layout – she wants her chain to look uniformed as well!