Dominoes are small, clay-like playing pieces that feature either a number or a blank (zero) on each end. They are stacked on top of one another and are usually twice as long as they are wide, which makes them easy to fit in a hand. The value of a domino is represented by the number or blank on each end, called pips. The more pips a domino has, the higher its rank and value. Each domino also belongs to a suit, which are the different numbers in a set; for example, a double-six domino has six pips, while a zero-pip domino is of no particular value.
A domino can be played in many ways, but the most common type of play is positional games where a player places a domino edge to edge against another so that the adjacent sides are identical or form some other specified total. There are a wide variety of games that can be played this way, and each has its own rules and strategy.
The most popular type of domino set is the traditional double-six set with 28 tiles, though larger sets are available for players seeking a more expansive game. When playing with the traditional double-six set, the first player is determined either by drawing lots or by whoever has the heaviest domino. Then, in turn, each player draws a new tile and places it on the table, positioning it so that its exposed ends match. This creates a chain that may grow in length until a domino with matching ends is played, at which point the remaining tiles in each player’s hand are revealed.
Dominos are fun to play, but they can also be used to create beautiful, intricate arrangements. When creating such designs, it is important to consider the laws of physics. “One of the main things I use is gravity,” says Lily Hevesh, who has worked on projects that involve more than 300,000 dominoes. Her YouTube channel, Hevesh5, features more than 2 million subscribers, and she’s helped set the Guinness World Record for a circular domino arrangement. Hevesh has created spectacular domino setups for movies, television shows, and events, including the album launch of pop star Katy Perry.
Once Hevesh has finished setting up her designs, she has to wait for them to fall, and this requires a great deal of patience. But once the dominoes tumble, they’re almost always spectacular. “It’s very satisfying when you’ve been able to accomplish a project,” she says.
Dominoes are a versatile tool that can be used in many different ways, from educational activities to promoting businesses and causes. For example, Domino’s Pizza has partnered with drone company Volocopter to develop a pizza-delivery vehicle that flies through the air instead of driving on streets. The company is experimenting with other delivery methods, as well, including robotic and autonomous vehicles. Domino’s is betting on these new delivery technologies to help expand its market. The company has a vision of using technology to make itself more efficient and convenient, and this partnership is just the beginning.