## The Domino Effect

When a domino falls, much of its potential energy converts to kinetic energy, the energy of motion. This pushes the next domino over, and the process continues, until all the dominoes have fallen. This is the domino effect in action, and it’s the reason you see videos of massive chains toppling in slow-motion until they reach the end.

Dominoes have a long history of cultural significance in many societies. They’re a universal symbol of our innate human need to connect with one another and to build community. Dominoes are often played at social gatherings, in bustling city squares, or quiet village homes.

While the rules of different domino games may vary slightly from region to region, there are some general principles that apply to all of them. The way a domino is placed on the table has a significant impact on how that domino will be used in the game. The way the dominoes are arranged on the table also has an impact on how the chain of dominoes will be formed.

To start a domino game, each player draws the number of tiles permitted to him or her according to the rules for that particular game and places them in front of him or her. Then, he or she begins placing the dominoes on the table, arranging them so that each side of the tile matches up with the adjacent face of the existing domino chain or row of tiles. If a tile has a double, then it must be played crosswise, with the two matching ends touching each other. Singles must be played lengthwise.

As the first domino is played, it sets up a chain of dominoes that will be followed by all subsequent players in turn. Each subsequent domino that is played will add to the size of the chain, and it’s up to the players in a game to decide how to use the chain. For example, they might play it so that the chains form a pattern or shape, or they might try to achieve a specific total in the chain.

The dominoes that are in play at any given time are called the “stock.” In some games, a player is allowed to bye or take tiles from the stock, adding them to his or her own set of dominoes. In most games, the tiles in a domino set must be joined to the line of play either by touching a single or by touching a double.

When a player plays a domino that has a matching end to the other end of the chain, it is said to be a “spot.” This type of domino is referred to as a “single” or “non-spinner.” The most common set of dominoes is known as a double-nine. However, a few sets of larger dominoes exist that contain more than 100 tiles.