How an Engineer Designs a Domino Setup

Domino is an interesting game that is played by laying down tiles with matching ends, and then attempting to score points by connecting all exposed sides of the chain. The first player to connect all four sides of the chain earns the highest value score. Domino is a popular game that has many variations. There are even domino games that involve making words with the tiles!

Dominos can be stacked in straight or curved lines, and when they fall over, it creates an amazing display. Lily Hevesh began collecting dominoes when she was nine years old, and soon started creating her own mind-blowing setups. Now, Hevesh has a YouTube channel with more than 2 million subscribers, and is a professional domino artist who creates spectacular setups for movies, TV shows, and events.

Hevesh uses a version of the engineering-design process to plan each domino setup she creates. She starts by considering the theme or purpose of the design, and brainstorms images or words that could represent it. She then creates a prototype to test out the design. When the prototype is successful, she creates a full-size version.

During the development stage, Hevesh carefully tests each domino to ensure that it is sturdy and accurate. She also pays special attention to the color and finish of the pieces. She believes that a good domino should be able to stand up against the elements and be enjoyed for many generations to come.

When a new domino is added to a layout, it must be positioned so that its two matching ends are adjacent. If the domino is a double, then it must be placed cross-ways across the end that it is connected to. Then, additional tiles may be played against it, forming a snake-line of dominoes that gradually increases in length.

When a domino has a blank side, it can only be matched with another domino that has a corresponding blank side. If no matching side is available, then the blank must be considered “wild,” and the player can ascribe any number to it. Blanks can be useful for scoring very high amounts of points, especially if they are played at the beginning of a line. This strategy is called “stitching up the ends.”