Dominoes  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Dominoes (or dominos) is a game played with rectangular "domino" tiles. The domino gaming pieces make up a domino set, sometimes called a deck or pack. The traditional Sino-European domino set consists of 28 dominoes, colloquially nicknamed bones, cards, tiles, tickets, stones, or spinners. Each domino is a rectangular tile with a line dividing its face into two square ends. Each end is marked with a number of spots (also called pips, nips or dobs) or is blank. The backs of the dominoes in a set are indistinguishable, either blank or having some common design. A domino set is a generic gaming device, similar to playing cards or dice, in that a variety of games can be played with a set.

The earliest mention of dominoes is from Song Dynasty China, found in the text Former Events in Wulin. Dominoes first appeared in Italy during the 18th century, and although it is unknown how Chinese dominoes developed into the modern game, it is speculated that Italian missionaries in China may have brought the game to Europe.

Other uses of dominoes

Besides playing games, another use of dominoes is the domino show, which involves standing them on end in long lines so that when the first tile is toppled, it topples the second, which topples the third, etc., resulting in all of the tiles falling. By analogy, the phenomenon of small events causing similar events leading to eventual catastrophe is called the domino effect.

Arrangements of millions of tiles have been made that have taken many minutes, even hours to fall. For large and elaborate arrangements, special blockages (also known as firebreaks) are employed at regular distances to prevent a premature toppling from undoing more than a section of the dominoes while still being able to be removed without damage.

Dominoes are also commonly used as components in Rube Goldberg machines.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Dominoes" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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