Dominos are of course a game, but they are more famous for their falling ability. When mentioning Dominos, everyone thinks about those huge setups where millions and millions of Dominos are setup to make the next one fall, all in a synchronized ballet of patterns that makes us all feel ziggy inside. It’s great entertainment to see them executed like that, but few really understand how much work it is setting them all up.
Usually there is a huge team behind the setup of a large scale Domino crashing event. Hundreds, if not thousands, of safety zones are incorporated to make sure nothing starts falling prematurely to ruin the whole process, only for the crew to start over again.
That’s why the genius of Karl Lautman is so mesmerizing. He came up with a small invention that showcases some odd behavior of the Domino brick. He managed to create a small box where the Dominos, about 75 of them, are lined up in a perfect circle. When they are pushed, they of course start falling on the next and the next. Before you know it, they are raised to their starting position by themselves. Just watching it is kind of whimsy and your brain doesn’t wrap around what’s really going on in the beginning. It’s only after watching it for a few times that you really start to see what is happening. It’s great fun and it’s a good way of showcasing how a nice illusion can make us brainstorm to try to figure out how it’s done.