The Basics of Domino

Domino is a type of game in which players arrange dominoes on end in long lines. When one domino is tipped, it triggers the next domino to tip, and so on until all the dominoes in the line are knocked over. This simple action can lead to complex designs when dozens or hundreds of dominoes are arranged in careful succession. It can also create an effect known as the domino effect, which describes a sequence of events that starts small and rapidly grows into something larger.

The dominoes used in games are usually rectangular blocks, thumbsized with a surface of dots or pips (similar to those on a die). Each domino has two parts, the identity-bearing face and the blank or identically patterned face. The pips on the dominoes are normally painted or inlaid to make them more distinctive. Some sets of dominoes are made from different types of natural materials such as stone (e.g., marble, granite, or soapstone), other woods such as ebony; metals (such as brass or pewter); and ceramic clay. In modern times, dominoes are often made of polymer, which provides greater durability than the natural materials.

A single domino has a number of different pips or dots on each side, with some sides having more than others. Each domino is named for the number of pips on each of its sides, and a pair of dominoes are called doubles when they have the same number of pips on both faces. Most dominoes have open ends, which allow additional tiles to be placed against them in a particular direction. However, a few dominoes have closed ends, which limit the directions in which additional tiles can be placed.

Traditionally, dominoes have been used for positional games that involve placing a domino edge to edge against an adjacent domino. This allows players to build positions with specified totals. The player with the highest total score wins the game. Depending on the rules of the game, the pips on an opposing player’s tiles may count as zero or as two (a double with one pips counts as one and a double with two pips counts as two).

Some people use dominoes to create art. This can be as simple as creating straight lines of dominoes or more elaborate, such as curved lines, grids that form pictures when the dominoes fall, or even 3D structures such as towers and pyramids. Some artists use the resulting fallen dominoes to make sculptures that are then displayed in museums or galleries.

Dominos are also used in business, particularly for demonstrating leadership. This is sometimes accomplished through the TV show Undercover Boss, in which a company CEO goes into a company to observe how employees interact with each other and customers. This is an effective way for a company to determine what changes need to be made in order to improve performance.

The Domino Effect is a popular phrase that describes a series of events, starting with one small event, that leads to larger and often more catastrophic results. It can be used to describe a negative situation in which one problem leads to another, or it can be applied to a positive situation in which one thing influences several other things, sometimes in unexpected ways.