A domino is a small rectangular block with one or more sets of dots on each side, used for playing various games. Its size makes it an ideal choice for use in children’s toys and education. In the past, dominoes were made from bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell, ivory or ebony with black or white pips inlaid in them. Now they are typically made from wood, though they may also be made of plastic or other materials. A domino set includes a variety of shapes and sizes, with each type having different rules for playing.
Each domino has a number written on it in either Arabic numerals or traditional dots (also called “pips”). A full set of 28 dominoes contains all the numbers from one to six. Some dominoes are blank, while others show a single number on each side. Traditionally, each domino represented one of the 21 possible results of two thrown dice. This set of rules led to a variety of games, from simple blocking and scoring ones to intricate trick-taking or solitaire variants, many of them adaptations of card games designed to circumvent religious proscriptions against the play of cards.
Dominoes are also commonly used as a form of art and can be arranged into straight lines, curved lines, grids that form pictures when they fall or stacked walls. Some artists use them to create intricate works of architecture. When they are stacked correctly, the ends of the dominoes can be connected together to make long chains.
When the first domino is tipped ever so slightly, it triggers a chain reaction, and all of the other dominoes tip over at once. This is sometimes referred to as the Domino Effect, because it can lead to a shift in behavior and beliefs. For example, when Jennifer Dukes Lee began making her bed each day, she became committed to the idea that she is the kind of person who keeps a clean house.
A game of domino involves players taking turns selecting and playing a domino, which is placed so that its end touches one of the ends of another domino in a line. The player who has the least combined sum of all the spots on all their remaining dominoes wins the game. The game can continue until the dominoes are all played or a player can no longer play.
In some games, if the player who plays a domino cannot match an existing domino, they must choose a different one from the boneyard to start the next turn. This can be a difficult task, especially if the player is not able to find a domino that matches the value of the last domino played.
The speed at which a domino falls depends on the amount of energy in the original domino. This energy is converted into kinetic energy as the domino moves forward, and is transmitted from domino to domino until it reaches the end of its line. This type of energy transfer is similar to a nerve impulse in the body, which travels at a constant rate independent of the size of the triggering stimulus and only travels in one direction.