How to Design a Domino Set

Domino is the most popular board game in the world, and it can be played with any number of players. The game is played by arranging tiles on the table in a line, or a curved line, and then putting one tile onto each end of the line, forming a chain of dominos. Each domino has a number showing on one side and a blank or identically patterned other side, known as a double. There are various suits of dominos, and a domino with a particular suit has a value associated with it.

The first player (usually determined by drawing lots, or by who holds the heaviest hand) places the first tile on the table, usually a double-six. Each subsequent player must place a domino on the table, placing it so that its adjacent ends match one another or form a certain number. As the chain grows, it may be used to score points or create a set of conditions that must be met in order to win.

Dominoes, also known as bones, cards, men or pieces, are a type of rectangular plastic tile with an identifying pattern on each face and a line in the center that divides it visually into two squares, called ends. Each end has a different value, indicated by an arrangement of spots or “pips” like those on a die. There are also some double-ends with no pips at all, and the number of pips on each end determines its rank or “weight.”

In the west, domino was apparently first recorded in Italy and France in the mid-18th century. It was introduced into England by French prisoners toward the end of that same century and spread from there.

Most domino sets contain 28 dominoes, though larger ones exist. Larger sets are used for games that involve many players or for longer chains. There are also a number of variant games, and the exact rules vary by game.

When Lily Hevesh is creating a domino setup, she uses a process similar to an engineering design process. She starts by considering the theme of her work and brainstorming images or words she might want to use.

She then considers the mechanics of the piece she is making. This helps her to plan how the dominoes will be positioned in relation to each other. She then draws a sketch of the layout.

Hevesh then begins the process of laying out the dominoes, which is often a time-consuming and labor intensive job. When the dominoes are all in place, she flicks the first domino and watches it fall, one by one. The potential energy from the first domino is transferred to the next, which then converts to kinetic energy and provides the push necessary to knock over the next domino—and so on.